Next Article in Journal
Protective Effects of Costunolide against Hydrogen Peroxide-Induced Injury in PC12 Cells
Next Article in Special Issue
Photoelectrochemical Behavior of Electrophoretically Deposited Hematite Thin Films Modified with Ti(IV)
Previous Article in Journal
Using Low Temperature Photoluminescence Spectroscopy to Investigate CH3NH3PbI3 Hybrid Perovskite Degradation
Previous Article in Special Issue
Doping-Promoted Solar Water Oxidation on Hematite Photoanodes
Article Menu
Issue 7 (July) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessReview
Molecules 2016, 21(7), 900;

Photocatalytic Water Splitting—The Untamed Dream: A Review of Recent Advances

Institute of Materials Science, University of Connecticut, 91 North Eagleville Road, Storrs, CT 06269-3222, USA
Department of Chemistry, University of Connecticut, 55 North Eagleville Road, Storrs, CT 06269-3060, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Nick Serpone
Received: 27 May 2016 / Revised: 30 June 2016 / Accepted: 5 July 2016 / Published: 9 July 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photocatalytic Water Splitting—the Untamed Dream)
Full-Text   |   PDF [2222 KB, uploaded 9 July 2016]   |  


Photocatalytic water splitting using sunlight is a promising technology capable of providing high energy yield without pollutant byproducts. Herein, we review various aspects of this technology including chemical reactions, physiochemical conditions and photocatalyst types such as metal oxides, sulfides, nitrides, nanocomposites, and doped materials followed by recent advances in computational modeling of photoactive materials. As the best-known catalyst for photocatalytic hydrogen and oxygen evolution, TiO2 is discussed in a separate section, along with its challenges such as the wide band gap, large overpotential for hydrogen evolution, and rapid recombination of produced electron-hole pairs. Various approaches are addressed to overcome these shortcomings, such as doping with different elements, heterojunction catalysts, noble metal deposition, and surface modification. Development of a photocatalytic corrosion resistant, visible light absorbing, defect-tuned material with small particle size is the key to complete the sunlight to hydrogen cycle efficiently. Computational studies have opened new avenues to understand and predict the electronic density of states and band structure of advanced materials and could pave the way for the rational design of efficient photocatalysts for water splitting. Future directions are focused on developing innovative junction architectures, novel synthesis methods and optimizing the existing active materials to enhance charge transfer, visible light absorption, reducing the gas evolution overpotential and maintaining chemical and physical stability. View Full-Text
Keywords: water splitting; solar fuels; hydrogen; photocatalysis; photocatalysts; semiconductors; nanomaterials; metal oxides; nanotechnology water splitting; solar fuels; hydrogen; photocatalysis; photocatalysts; semiconductors; nanomaterials; metal oxides; nanotechnology

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Jafari, T.; Moharreri, E.; Amin, A.S.; Miao, R.; Song, W.; Suib, S.L. Photocatalytic Water Splitting—The Untamed Dream: A Review of Recent Advances. Molecules 2016, 21, 900.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Molecules EISSN 1420-3049 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top