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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Photoelectrochemical Reduction of CO2 to Syngas by Reduced Ag Catalysts on Si Photocathodes

1
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea
2
School of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Chung-Ang University, Seoul 06974, Korea
3
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Korea University, Seoul 02841, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(10), 3487; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10103487
Received: 9 April 2020 / Revised: 8 May 2020 / Accepted: 12 May 2020 / Published: 18 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials Boosting Solar Water Splitting)
The photoelectrochemical reduction of CO2 to syngas that is used for many practical applications has been emerging as a promising technique to relieve the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere. Si has been considered to be one of the most promising materials for photoelectrodes, but the integration of electrocatalysts is essential for the photoelectrochemical reduction of CO2 using Si. We report an enhancement of catalytic activity for CO2 reduction reaction by Ag catalysts of tuned morphology, active sites, and electronic structure through reducing anodic treatment. Our proposed photocathode structure, a SiO2 patterned p-Si photocathode with these reduced Ag catalysts, that was fabricated using electron-beam deposition and electrodeposition methods, provides a low onset-potential of −0.16 V vs. the reversible hydrogen electrode (RHE), a large saturated photocurrent density of −9 mA/cm2 at −1.23 V vs. RHE, and faradaic efficiency for CO of 47% at −0.6 V vs. RHE. This photocathode can produce syngas in the ratio from 1:1 to 1:3, which is an appropriate proportion for practical application. This work presents a new approach for designing photocathodes with a balanced catalytic activity and light absorption to improve the photoelectrochemical application for not only CO2 reduction reaction, but also water splitting or N2 reduction reaction. View Full-Text
Keywords: photoelectrochemical; CO2 reduction reaction; Ag catalysts; Si photocathode; syngas production photoelectrochemical; CO2 reduction reaction; Ag catalysts; Si photocathode; syngas production
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kim, C.; Choi, S.; Choi, M.-J.; Lee, S.A.; Ahn, S.H.; Kim, S.Y.; Jang, H.W. Photoelectrochemical Reduction of CO2 to Syngas by Reduced Ag Catalysts on Si Photocathodes. Appl. Sci. 2020, 10, 3487.

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