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Issue 41, 2015
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Earth-abundant NiS co-catalyst modified metal-free mpg-C3N4/CNT nanocomposites for highly efficient visible-light photocatalytic H2 evolution

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Abstract

In the present work, the earth-abundant NiS co-catalyst modified mesoporous graphite-like C3N4 (mpg-C3N4)/CNT nanocomposites were prepared via a two-step strategy: the sol–gel method and the direct precipitation process. The mpg-C3N4/CNT/NiS composite photocatalysts were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), UV-vis absorption spectroscopy, photoluminescence spectroscopy (PL), photoelectrochemical (PEC) and electrochemical impedance spectra (EIS) experiments. The photocatalytic H2-production activity over the composite catalysts was also evaluated by using an aqueous solution containing triethanolamine under visible light (λ ≥ 420 nm). The results showed that the loading of earth-abundant NiS co-catalysts onto metal-free mpg-C3N4/CNT nanocomposites can remarkably enhance their photocatalytic H2-production activity. The optimal loading amount of NiS on metal-free mpg-C3N4/CNT nanocomposites was about 1 wt%. The as-obtained mpg-C3N4/CNT/1% NiS ternary composite photocatalyst exhibits the best H2-evolution activity with the highest rate of about 521 μmol g−1 h−1 under visible light (λ ≥ 420 nm), which is almost 148 times that of a pure mpg-C3N4/CNT sample. The enhanced photocatalytic activity can be mainly attributed to the synergistic effect of effectively promoted separation of photo-generated electron–hole pairs and enhanced H2-evolution kinetics. The co-loading of nanocarbon materials and earth-abundant co-catalysts onto metal-free mpg-C3N4 photocatalysts offers great potential for practical applications in photocatalytic H2 evolution under visible light illumination.

Graphical abstract: Earth-abundant NiS co-catalyst modified metal-free mpg-C3N4/CNT nanocomposites for highly efficient visible-light photocatalytic H2 evolution

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Publication details

The article was received on 16 Jul 2015, accepted on 10 Sep 2015 and first published on 15 Sep 2015


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C5DT02693H
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Citation: Dalton Trans., 2015,44, 18260-18269

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    Earth-abundant NiS co-catalyst modified metal-free mpg-C3N4/CNT nanocomposites for highly efficient visible-light photocatalytic H2 evolution

    Y. Zhong, J. Yuan, J. Wen, X. Li, Y. Xu, W. Liu, S. Zhang and Y. Fang, Dalton Trans., 2015, 44, 18260
    DOI: 10.1039/C5DT02693H

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