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Open AccessArticle

TiO2 and Fe2O3 Films for Photoelectrochemical Water Splitting

1
Department of Inorganic Technology, University of Chemistry and Technology, Prague, Technická 5, Prague 16628, Czech Republic
2
Joint Laboratory of Optics, Palacky University, RCPTM, 17. listopadu 12, Olomouc 77146, Czech Republic
3
Institute of Physics, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Na Slovance 2, Prague 14800, Czech Republic
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Pierre Pichat
Molecules 2015, 20(1), 1046-1058; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules20011046
Received: 5 November 2014 / Accepted: 9 December 2014 / Published: 9 January 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photocatalysis)
Titanium oxide (TiO2) and iron oxide (α-Fe2O3) hematite films have potential applications as photoanodes in electrochemical water splitting. In the present work TiO2 and α-Fe2O3 thin films were prepared by two methods, e.g., sol-gel and High Power Impulse Magnetron Sputtering (HiPIMS) and judged on the basis of physical properties such as crystalline structure and surface topography and functional properties such as simulated photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting conditions. It was revealed that the HiPIMS method already provides crystalline structures of anatase TiO2 and hematite Fe2O3 during the deposition, whereas to finalize the sol-gel route the as-deposited films must always be annealed to obtain the crystalline phase. Regarding the PEC activity, both TiO2 films show similar photocurrent density, but only when illuminated by UV light. A different situation was observed for hematite films where plasmatic films showed a tenfold enhancement of the stable photocurrent density over the sol-gel hematite films for both UV and visible irradiation. The superior properties of plasmatic films could be explained by ability to address some of the hematite drawbacks by the deposition of very thin films (25 nm) consisting of small densely packed particles and by doping with Sn. View Full-Text
Keywords: TiO2; hematite; film; sol-gel; plasmatic; photocurrent; water splitting TiO2; hematite; film; sol-gel; plasmatic; photocurrent; water splitting
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Krysa, J.; Zlamal, M.; Kment, S.; Brunclikova, M.; Hubicka, Z. TiO2 and Fe2O3 Films for Photoelectrochemical Water Splitting. Molecules 2015, 20, 1046-1058.

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