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Electrochemical synthesis of nanostructured metal-doped titanates and investigation of their activity as oxygen evolution photoanodes

DOI: 10.1021/acsaem.8b00873 DOI Help

Authors: Matthew J. Lawrence (University of Birmingham) , Veronica Celorrio (UK Catalysis Hub, Research Complex at Harwell) , Xiaobo Shi (Southern University of Science and Technology) , Qi Wang (Southern University of Science and Technology) , Alex Yanson (ASML) , Nicholas J. E. Adkins (University of Birmingham) , Meng Gu (Southern University of Science and Technology) , Joaquín Rodríguez-lópez (University of Illinois at Urbana−Champaign) , Paramaconi Rodriguez (University of Birmingham)
Co-authored by industrial partner: Yes

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Acs Applied Energy Materials

State: Published (Approved)
Published: September 2018
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 15151

Abstract: Mixed and doped metal oxides are excellent candidates for commercial energy applications such as batteries, supercapacitors, solar cells and photocatalysis due to their activity, stability, tailorable band edge and bandgaps, and low cost. However, the routes commonly employed in their synthesis present synthetic bottlenecks with reliance on sacrificial materials, the use of high temperatures, long reaction times, and little ability to control morphology, thus compromising their scale-up. Herein, we present the single pot, electrochemical synthesis of high surface area, doped metal titanate nanostructures, including Na2Ti3O7 (NTO), 25 wt.% Sn:NTO, 5 wt.% Fe:NTO and 3 wt.% Cu:NTO. The synergic use of the cathodic corrosion method with suspended droplet alloying (SDA) led to materials with excellent homogeneity, presenting a promising route for the screening, production and discovery of electroactive materials. As proof of concept of the synthetic control and impact on reactivity, we found that the photoanodic oxygen evolution activity of the nanomaterials was adversely affected by Fe and Sn doping into NTO while Cu doping, at 3 wt.% displayed significant improvement. This work demonstrates the ability of the cathodic corrosion method to obtain compositionally- and structurally- controlled mixed-metal oxides in a rapid fashion, thus creating new opportunities in the field of materials engineering and the systematic study of compositional gradients on the (photo)electrochemical performance of metal oxide nanoparticles.

Journal Keywords: Electrochemical synthesis; titanate nanowires; mixed metal oxides; photoelectrochemistry; oxygen evolution reaction

Subject Areas: Chemistry, Materials, Energy


Instruments: B18-Core EXAFS