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Facet Engineering of LaNbON2 Transformed from LaKNaNbO5 for Enhanced Photocatalytic O2 Evolution

Abstract

LaNbON2 absorbs visible light up to approximately 750 nm, one of the longest among Nb-based oxynitrides, but its photocatalytic water oxidation activity remains negligible owing partly to the exposure of inactive facets during thermal nitridation. Herein, LaNbON2 exposing metastable {010} facets was prepared by nitriding plate-like LaKNaNbO5. During nitridation, the transformation of LaKNaNbO5 into LaNbON2 along the [010] direction occurred owing to their matching of crystal structures, resulting in {010} facets exposed on the surface of plate-like LaNbON2. DFT calculations revealed that {010} facets have a higher surface energy than the {100} facets of conventional LaNbON2. The exposure of such metastable {010} facets appears to have improved electron transfer from the interior of LaNbON2 to its surface along the [010] direction. After loading a CoOx cocatalyst, plate-like LaNbON2 exhibited enhanced photocatalytic O2 evolution activity with an apparent quantum yield (AQY) of 0.82% while conventional LaNbON2 was almost inactive. This is probably due to the small effective mass of electrons along the [010] direction as well as the low defect densities in LaNbON2 crystals after a mild nitridation. This work provides a novel transformation strategy yielding LaNbON2 with low defect densitiesies and exposing metastable facets, and thus exhibiting unique photocatalytic activity.

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
07 Feb 2020
Accepted
17 May 2020
First published
18 May 2020

J. Mater. Chem. A, 2020, Accepted Manuscript
Article type
Paper

Facet Engineering of LaNbON2 Transformed from LaKNaNbO5 for Enhanced Photocatalytic O2 Evolution

X. Wang, T. Hisatomi, J. Liang, Z. Wang, Y. Xiang, Y. zhao, X. Dai, T. Takata and K. Domen, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2020, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/D0TA01489C

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