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Catalysts 2017, 7(11), 350; doi:10.3390/catal7110350

Characteristics of NixFe1−xOy Electrocatalyst on Hematite as Photoanode for Solar Hydrogen Production

1
Department of Physics, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan
2
Institute of Atomic and Molecular Sciences, Academia Sinica, Taipei 10617, Taiwan
3
Department of Mechanical Engineering, National Central University, Taoyuan 32001, Taiwan
4
Department of Physics, National Central University, Taoyuan 32001, Taiwan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 September 2017 / Revised: 15 November 2017 / Accepted: 17 November 2017 / Published: 20 November 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Electrocatalysis)
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Abstract

The use of hematite as the photoanode for photoelectrochemical hydrogen production by solar energy has been actively studied due to its abundance, stability, and adequate optical properties. Deposition of an electrocatalyst overlayer on the hematite may increase kinetics and lower the onset potential for water splitting. NixFe1−xOy is one of the most effective electrocatalysts reported for this purpose. However, the condition and results of the previous reports vary significantly, and a comprehensive model for NixFe1−xOy/hematite is lacking. Here, we report a simple and novel chemical bath deposition method for depositing low-onset-potential NixFe1−xOy electrocatalyst on hematite. With a Ni percentage of 80% and an immersion time of 2 min, the as-prepared NixFe1−xOy overlayer raised the photovoltage from 0.2 V to 0.7 V, leading to a cathodic shift of the onset potential by 400 mV, while maintaining the same level of current density. The dependence of the electrochemical and photoelectrochemical characteristics of the photoanode on the condition of the electrocatalyst was studied systematically and explained based on energy level diagrams and kinetics. View Full-Text
Keywords: pulsed laser deposition; solar water splitting; electrocatalyst; chemical bath deposition pulsed laser deposition; solar water splitting; electrocatalyst; chemical bath deposition
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Yen, C.-P.; Li, Y.-J.; Wang, J.; Chen, S.-Y.; Tseng, C.-J. Characteristics of NixFe1−xOy Electrocatalyst on Hematite as Photoanode for Solar Hydrogen Production. Catalysts 2017, 7, 350.

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