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Special Issue "Photo(electro)catalytic Water Splitting for H2 Production"

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "B4: Hydrogen Energy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 December 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Habib Ullah
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Renewable Energy, Environment and Sustainability Institute, College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Science, University of Exeter, Penryn Campus, Penryn TR10 9FE, UK
Interests: Design & Development of Energy Materials; Density Functional Theory; Photocatalysis; Electrocatalysis OER/HER; Organic Solar Cell; Thermal Energy Storage-Phase Change Materials
Dr. Asif Ali Tahir
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Environment and Sustainability Institute,College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Science,University of Exeter, Penryn Campus, Penryn TR10 9FE, UK
Interests: solar to chemical energy conversion; solar hydrogen production; photoreduction of waste plastic to fuel; energy storage; photocatalysis; energy-efficient buildings; wastewater treatment; DSSCS
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We welcome your submission to this Special Issue, which is intended to collect a series of papers on the thematic issue of “Photo(electro)catalytic Water Splitting for H2 Production.”

The energy demand will increase with the increase in human population, and fossil fuels will not be able to fulfill this demand. Hydrogen is a promising alternative to unsustainable fossil fuels due to its vital role in ammonia and clean-burning fuel production. As we know, about 96% of the world’s hydrogen comes from the reformation of fossil fuels, which utilize high energy, followed by serious CO2 emissions. The biggest technological challenges towards realizing sustainable energy production are the development of new materials and devices, capable of harnessing and storing energy cleanly and sustainably. Efficient and sustainable hydrogen can be produced with the help of the state-of-the-art photocatalysis and Electrocatalysis from water splitting. Water Splitting is one of the most efficient and reliable approaches to produce hydrogen from renewable energy, such as solar, wind, and hydropower for large scale energy storage. This is an economically efficient way, where electrolysis of water can be achieved at room temperature, and the only required inputs are water and energy (electricity). The main challenge of water splitting is efficiency, stability, cheap earth-abundant catalyst, and the separation of H2 and O2 during the reaction. Development of efficient, cost-effective, and stable electrocatalysts for water oxidation is very useful in promising energy conversion technologies such as water electrolyzers, integrated solar water-splitting devices, and Li-based batteries. Water splitting is a combination of two half-reactions, where the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) and the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) occur at the anode and cathode, respectively, of an electrochemical cell.

The vision of this Special Issue is to report novel catalysts for (photo) electrochemical conversion processes which can convert water into a high-value chemical product such as Hydrogen. We invite researchers to contribute review and original articles, which covers but not limited to the following topics.

  1. Computational Modelling of Catalysts for Water Splitting
  2. Reaction Mechanism of Oxygen Evolution Reaction & Hydrogen Evolution Reaction Catalysts
  3. 2D materials for Water Electrolysis
  4. Perovskites-based Photo or Electrocatalysts
  5. Metal oxides for Photoelectrochemical process
  6. Z-Scheme Heterojunctions-based Photo(electro)catalysts

Dr. Habib Ullah
Dr. Asif Tahir
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Photocatalysis
  • Electrocatalysis
  • Environment Remediation
  • Density Functional Theory
  • Hydrogen Evolution Reaction
  • Oxygen Evolution Reaction
  • Material Design
  • Z-Scheme Heterojunction
  • Metal Oxides

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Article
Ab initio Study of Hydrogen Adsorption on Metal-Decorated Borophene-Graphene Bilayer
Energies 2021, 14(9), 2473; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14092473 - 26 Apr 2021
Viewed by 688
Abstract
We studied the hydrogen adsorption on the surface of a covalently bonded bilayer borophene-graphene heterostructure decorated with Pt, Ni, Ag, and Cu atoms. Due to its structure, the borophene-graphene bilayer combines borophene activity with the mechanical stability of graphene. Based on the density [...] Read more.
We studied the hydrogen adsorption on the surface of a covalently bonded bilayer borophene-graphene heterostructure decorated with Pt, Ni, Ag, and Cu atoms. Due to its structure, the borophene-graphene bilayer combines borophene activity with the mechanical stability of graphene. Based on the density functional theory calculations, we determined the energies and preferred adsorption sites of these metal atoms on the heterostructure’s borophene surface. Since boron atoms in different positions can have different reactivities with respect to metal atoms, we considered seven possible adsorption positions. According to our calculations, all three metals adsorb in the top position above the boron atom and demonstrate catalytic activity. Among the metals considered, copper had the best characteristics. Copper-decorated heterostructure possesses a feasible near-zero overpotential for hydrogen evolution reaction. However, the borophene-graphene bilayer decorated with copper is unstable with respect to compression. Small deformations lead to irreversible structural changes in the system. Thus, compression cannot be used as an effective mechanism for additional potential reduction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photo(electro)catalytic Water Splitting for H2 Production)
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Article
Sodium Tungsten Oxide Bronze Nanowires Bundles in Adsorption of Methylene Blue Dye under UV and Visible Light Exposure
Energies 2021, 14(5), 1322; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14051322 - 01 Mar 2021
Viewed by 620
Abstract
This paper describes the analysis and characterization of NayWOx bronze nanowires bundles and evaluation of their effective adsorption of methylene blue dye (MB). The Na-doped WOx bronze nanowires bundles were first synthesized via a simple solvothermal method, which were [...] Read more.
This paper describes the analysis and characterization of NayWOx bronze nanowires bundles and evaluation of their effective adsorption of methylene blue dye (MB). The Na-doped WOx bronze nanowires bundles were first synthesized via a simple solvothermal method, which were then fully characterized by using different techniques including TEM, XRD, XPS and UV-Vis, to validate the successful Na+ insertion into the WOx framework. The adsorption activities of the resulting NayWOx bronze nanowires bundles, compared with the undoped WOx form, were investigated by evaluating the adsorption effect on methylene blue under both UV and visible light irradiations. An enhanced adsorption performance of the Na-doped WOx bronze samples was recorded, which demonstrated a 90% of removal efficiency of the MB under different conditions (dark, visible and UV light). Moreover, the NayWOx bronze samples also offered a 4 times better kinetic rate of MB removal than the plain WOx nanowires. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photo(electro)catalytic Water Splitting for H2 Production)
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Review

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Review
A Review of Supercapacitors: Materials Design, Modification, and Applications
Energies 2021, 14(22), 7779; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14227779 - 19 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 919
Abstract
Supercapacitors (SCs) have received much interest due to their enhanced electrochemical performance, superior cycling life, excellent specific power, and fast charging–discharging rate. The energy density of SCs is comparable to batteries; however, their power density and cyclability are higher by several orders of [...] Read more.
Supercapacitors (SCs) have received much interest due to their enhanced electrochemical performance, superior cycling life, excellent specific power, and fast charging–discharging rate. The energy density of SCs is comparable to batteries; however, their power density and cyclability are higher by several orders of magnitude relative to batteries, making them a flexible and compromising energy storage alternative, provided a proper design and efficient materials are used. This review emphasizes various types of SCs, such as electrochemical double-layer capacitors, hybrid supercapacitors, and pseudo-supercapacitors. Furthermore, various synthesis strategies, including sol-gel, electro-polymerization, hydrothermal, co-precipitation, chemical vapor deposition, direct coating, vacuum filtration, de-alloying, microwave auxiliary, in situ polymerization, electro-spinning, silar, carbonization, dipping, and drying methods, are discussed. Furthermore, various functionalizations of SC electrode materials are summarized. In addition to their potential applications, brief insights into the recent advances and associated problems are provided, along with conclusions. This review is a noteworthy addition because of its simplicity and conciseness with regard to SCs, which can be helpful for researchers who are not directly involved in electrochemical energy storage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photo(electro)catalytic Water Splitting for H2 Production)
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Review
Bismuth-Graphene Nanohybrids: Synthesis, Reaction Mechanisms, and Photocatalytic Applications—A Review
Energies 2021, 14(8), 2281; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14082281 - 19 Apr 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1245
Abstract
Photocatalysis is a classical solution to energy conversion and environmental pollution control problems. In photocatalysis, the development and exploration of new visible light catalysts and their synthesis and modification strategies are crucial. It is also essential to understand the mechanism of these reactions [...] Read more.
Photocatalysis is a classical solution to energy conversion and environmental pollution control problems. In photocatalysis, the development and exploration of new visible light catalysts and their synthesis and modification strategies are crucial. It is also essential to understand the mechanism of these reactions in the various reaction media. Recently, bismuth and graphene’s unique geometrical and electronic properties have attracted considerable attention in photocatalysis. This review summarizes bismuth-graphene nanohybrids’ synthetic processes with various design considerations, fundamental mechanisms of action, heterogeneous photocatalysis, benefits, and challenges. Some key applications in energy conversion and environmental pollution control are discussed, such as CO2 reduction, water splitting, pollutant degradation, disinfection, and organic transformations. The detailed perspective of bismuth-graphene nanohybrids’ applications in various research fields presented herein should be of equal interest to academic and industrial scientists. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photo(electro)catalytic Water Splitting for H2 Production)
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Review
Preparation, Functionalization, Modification, and Applications of Nanostructured Gold: A Critical Review
Energies 2021, 14(5), 1278; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14051278 - 25 Feb 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1613
Abstract
Gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) play a significant role in science and technology because of their unique size, shape, properties and broad range of potential applications. This review focuses on the various approaches employed for the synthesis, modification and functionalization of nanostructured Au. The [...] Read more.
Gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) play a significant role in science and technology because of their unique size, shape, properties and broad range of potential applications. This review focuses on the various approaches employed for the synthesis, modification and functionalization of nanostructured Au. The potential catalytic applications and their enhancement upon modification of Au nanostructures have also been discussed in detail. The present analysis also offers brief summaries of the major Au nanomaterials synthetic procedures, such as hydrothermal, solvothermal, sol-gel, direct oxidation, chemical vapor deposition, sonochemical deposition, electrochemical deposition, microwave and laser pyrolysis. Among the various strategies used for improving the catalytic performance of nanostructured Au, the modification and functionalization of nanostructured Au produced better results. Therefore, various synthesis, modification and functionalization methods employed for better catalytic outcomes of nanostructured Au have been summarized in this review. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photo(electro)catalytic Water Splitting for H2 Production)
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