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In-situ growth of triazine-heptazine based carbon nitride film for efficient (photo)electrochemical performance

Abstract

The inherent properties of carbon nitride and its (photo)electrode preparation are essential for the efficient conversion of solar energy or electricity into chemical energy in solar hydrogen production. We report successful in-situ growth of compact carbon nitride polymers (CNPs) 2D film with triazine-heptazine network fragment on FTO (CNPs/FTO) through an evaporation polymerization method at relatively low temperature (450 oC) using melamine and cyanuric chloride as precursors. The CNPs film intimately contacts with FTO substrate via covalent linkage of s-triazine units and FTO, which ensures more efficient interfacial charge transport. The triazine-heptazine network of CNPs allows stronger visible-light harvesting and more effective charge separation and transfer. As such, the prepared CNPs/FTO photoelectrode exhibits excellent PEC performance. Its photocurrent density is around 230 μA/cm2 at 1.23 V vs RHE, which is 7.5, 176.9 and 67.6 times of that of CN-Me/FTO, CN-CC/FTO, and g-C3N4/FTO, respectively, under simulated solar irradiation (1 sun, AM 1.5) without sacrificial regents and cocatalysts (CN-Me/FTO and CN-CC/FTO were prepared using melamine and cyanuric chloride alone as precursor, respectively, and g-C3N4/FTO was fabricated by gluing bulk g-C3N4 powders onto a FTO). Compared with previously reported metal-free carbon nitride photoanodes, our CNPs film shows the best PEC performance and lower preparation temperature. Further, the prepared CNPs/FTO film can be used as an economic and potential metal-free material for electrocatalytic hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). The CNPs/FTO electrode shows higher activity in the HER with low overpotential and acceptable current densities as compared to g-C3N4/FTO, CN-CC/FTO, and CN-Me/FTO electrodes, which is attributed to the strong contact of compact CNPs film with FTO and the increased terminal amino groups of CNPs.

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Publication details

The article was received on 10 Oct 2018, accepted on 04 Dec 2018 and first published on 04 Dec 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8CY02105H
Citation: Catal. Sci. Technol., 2019, Accepted Manuscript
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    In-situ growth of triazine-heptazine based carbon nitride film for efficient (photo)electrochemical performance

    Q. Gu, Q. Jia, S. Zhang, Z. Gao and P. Yang, Catal. Sci. Technol., 2019, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8CY02105H

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