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Issue 6, 2018
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Defect-mediated electron–hole separation in semiconductor photocatalysis

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Defects play important roles in semiconductor photocatalysis, which not only can act as active sites but also serve as recombination centers for electrons and holes. The rational control of defects appears to be particularly important. Defect engineering in semiconductor electron–hole separation is complex but vital for photocatalysis, and the exact control of defects still presents a great challenge. This review endeavors to clarify the inherent functionality of different defects such as bulk defects and surface/interface defects. The common defects such as oxygen vacancies and Mn+ defects have been summarized and discussed. The controllable creation of defects could lead to defect channels via defect–strain coupling, defect–defect and defect–electron interactions, which contribute to the enhancement in electronic conductivity and the separation of photogenerated electron–hole pairs. The deep understanding of defects can consolidate the fundamental photocatalytic theory and provide new insights for rationally designing defect-engineered semiconductor photocatalytic materials with satisfactory performance.

Graphical abstract: Defect-mediated electron–hole separation in semiconductor photocatalysis

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Article information

08 Feb 2018
03 Apr 2018
First published
06 Apr 2018

Inorg. Chem. Front., 2018,5, 1240-1254
Article type
Review Article

Defect-mediated electron–hole separation in semiconductor photocatalysis

W. Zhou and H. Fu, Inorg. Chem. Front., 2018, 5, 1240
DOI: 10.1039/C8QI00122G

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