Issue 8, 2016

Bismuth oxyhalides: synthesis, structure and photoelectrochemical activity


We report the synthesis and photoelectrochemical assessment of phase pure tetragonal matlockite structured BiOX (where X = Cl, Br, I) films. The materials were deposited using aerosol-assisted chemical vapour deposition. The measured optical bandgaps of the oxyhalides, supported by density functional theory calculations, showed a red shift with the increasing size of halide following the binding energy of the anion p-orbitals that form the valence band. Stability and photoelectrochemical studies carried out without a sacrificial electron donor showed the n-type BiOBr film to have the highest photocurrent reported for BiOBr in the literature to date (0.3 mA cm−2 at 1.23 V vs. RHE), indicating it is an excellent candidate for solar fuel production with a very low onset potential of 0.2 V vs. RHE. The high performance was attributed to the preferred growth of the film in the [011] direction, as shown by X-ray diffraction, leading to internal electric fields that minimize charge carrier recombination.

Graphical abstract: Bismuth oxyhalides: synthesis, structure and photoelectrochemical activity

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Article type
Edge Article
26 Jan 2016
05 Mar 2016
First published
09 Mar 2016
This article is Open Access

All publication charges for this article have been paid for by the Royal Society of Chemistry
Creative Commons BY license

Chem. Sci., 2016,7, 4832-4841

Bismuth oxyhalides: synthesis, structure and photoelectrochemical activity

D. S. Bhachu, S. J. A. Moniz, S. Sathasivam, D. O. Scanlon, A. Walsh, S. M. Bawaked, M. Mokhtar, A. Y. Obaid, I. P. Parkin, J. Tang and C. J. Carmalt, Chem. Sci., 2016, 7, 4832 DOI: 10.1039/C6SC00389C

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