Special Issue "Advanced Nanomaterials for Water Splitting"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991). This special issue belongs to the section "Energy and Catalysis".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2022) | Viewed by 4581

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Chung-Li Dong
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Physics, Tamkang University, Tamsui 25137, Taiwan
Interests: synchrotron X-ray spectroscopy; in situ/operando X-ray spectro-microscopy; atomic/electronic structures of nanomaterials and energy materials

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The research on solar hydrogen generation by water splitting is growing rapidly. This special issue will focus on the recent progress and latest advanced research on photocatalysts, electrocatalysts, photoelectrochemical cells, which have great potential for clean and sustainable energy. For this special issue, we solicit original research manuscripts on, but not limited to, the following research areas:

  • Emerging photocatalysts, electrocatalysts, or photoelectrochemical cells for water splitting;
  • Advanced in situ/operando characterizations;
  • Synthesis and characterization of novel nanoscale photoelectrodes for solar energy materials;
  • Plasmonic nanostructures for solar energy applications;
  • Defect engineering and surface passivation for efficient water splitting redox reactions;
  • Electronic structures and physicochemical properties of surface and interface of hybrid nanostructures for solar energy conversion;
  • Charge carrier dynamics in photocatalysts and photoelectrodes;
  • New concepts and modelling of materials and devices for efficient water splitting.

Prof. Dr. Chung-Li Dong
Guest Editor

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 submissions that pass pre-check are 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. Nanomaterials 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 2400 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

  • Photocatalyst
  • Electrocatalyst
  • Photoelectrochemical cell
  • Surface passivation
  • Defect engineering
  • Local surface plasmonic resonance
  • Electronic structures
  • Atomic structures

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Article
Synthesis, Physical Properties and Electrocatalytic Performance of Nickel Phosphides for Hydrogen Evolution Reaction of Water Electrolysis
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(17), 2935; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano12172935 - 25 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 388
Abstract
Nickel phosphides have been investigated as an alternative to noble metals and have emerged as potential catalysts that can efficiently catalyze the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). However, the impacts of facet morphology and crystal structure of the nickel phosphides on their catalytic reactivity [...] Read more.
Nickel phosphides have been investigated as an alternative to noble metals and have emerged as potential catalysts that can efficiently catalyze the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). However, the impacts of facet morphology and crystal structure of the nickel phosphides on their catalytic reactivity have not been systematically investigated. Herein, nickel phosphides with different crystalline states were prepared through a facile calcination treatment. It was found that the calcination treatment had important effects on the phase compositions, morphologies, and crystallinity of nickel phosphides, which are closely related to their HER activity. Generally, the crystallized Ni-P catalysts exhibited faster kinetics than the amorphous Ni-P. In particular, the Ni-P 300 showed remarkable HER performance with η10 of ca. 65 mV, along with a very low Tafel slope of ca. 44 mV dec−1 due to the increased catalytically active sites. Furthermore, the Ni-P 300 exhibited negligible decay during the 140 h galvanostatic electrolysis, showing better catalytic stability than the commercial Pt/C catalyst. Compared with the amorphous Ni-P, the boosted HER activity of the Ni-P 300 could benefit from the mixed nanocrystalline Ni2P and Ni3P, which could contribute to the Hads adsorption/desorption abilities and helped provide more activity sites, promoting the HER performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Nanomaterials for Water Splitting)
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Article
Tuning Surface Plasmonic Resonance and Surface Wettability of Au/CrN Films Using Nitrogen-Containing Gas
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(15), 2575; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano12152575 - 27 Jul 2022
Viewed by 370
Abstract
The surface plasmonic resonance, surface wettability, and related mechanical nanohardness and of face-centered-cubic (fcc) chromium nitride (CrN) films have been successfully manipulated via the simple method of tuning nitrogen-containing gas with different nitrogen-to-argon ratios, varying from 3.5 (N35), to 4.0 (N40), to 4.5 [...] Read more.
The surface plasmonic resonance, surface wettability, and related mechanical nanohardness and of face-centered-cubic (fcc) chromium nitride (CrN) films have been successfully manipulated via the simple method of tuning nitrogen-containing gas with different nitrogen-to-argon ratios, varying from 3.5 (N35), to 4.0 (N40), to 4.5 (N45), which is directly proportional to argon. All of the obtained CrN films showed that the surface wettability was due to hydrophilicity. All of the characteristics were mainly confirmed and explained by using X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns, including plan-view and cross-section SEM images, with calculations of the average grain size performed via histograms accompanied by different preferred grain orientations. In the present work, not only the surface plasmonic resonance, but also the surface wettability and the related mechanical nanohardness of CrN films were found to be tunable via a simple method of introducing adjustable nitrogen-reactive-containing gas during the deposition process, while the authors suggest that the crystal orientation transition from the (111) to the (200) crystalline plane changed significantly with the nitrogen-containing gas. So the transition of the preferred orientation of CrN’s cubic close-packed from (111) to (200) varied at this composite, caused and found by the nitrogen-containing gas, which can be tuned by the nitrogen-to-argon ratio. The surface plasmonic resonance and photoluminescence quenching effects were coupled photon and electron oscillations, which could be observed, and which existed at the interface between the CrN and Au metals in the designed heterostructures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Nanomaterials for Water Splitting)
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Article
Solvent Etching Process for Graphitic Carbon Nitride Photocatalysts Containing Platinum Cocatalyst: Effects of Water Hydrolysis on Photocatalytic Properties and Hydrogen Evolution Behaviors
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(7), 1188; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano12071188 - 02 Apr 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 692
Abstract
In this study, we synthesized Pt/g-C3N4 photocatalysts modified by a solvent etching process where ethanol (Pt/CN0), water (Pt/CN100), and a 50:50 mixture (Pt/CN50) were used as a solvent, and investigated the optimal properties of g-C3N4 to prepare [...] Read more.
In this study, we synthesized Pt/g-C3N4 photocatalysts modified by a solvent etching process where ethanol (Pt/CN0), water (Pt/CN100), and a 50:50 mixture (Pt/CN50) were used as a solvent, and investigated the optimal properties of g-C3N4 to prepare the best Pt/g-C3N4 for photocatalytic hydrogen evolution. From diverse characterizations, water was proven to be a stronger solvent agent, resulting in not only the introduction of more O-functional groups onto the g-C3N4 surface, but also the degradation of a regular array of tri-s-triazine units in the g-C3N4 structure. While the addition of O-functional groups positively influenced the oxidation state of the Pt cocatalyst and the hydrogen production rate, the changes to g-C3N4 structure retarded charge transfer on its surface, inducing negative effects such as fast recombination and less oxidized Pt species. Pt/CN50 that was synthesized with the 50:50 solvent mixture exhibited the highest hydrogen production rate of 590.9 µmol g−1h−1, while the hydrogen production rates of Pt/CN0 (with pure ethanol solvent) and Pt/CN100 (with pure water solvent) were 462.7, and 367.3 µmol g−1h−1, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Nanomaterials for Water Splitting)
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Article
Attraction in Action: Reduction of Water to Dihydrogen Using Surface-Functionalized TiO2 Nanoparticles
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(5), 789; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano12050789 - 25 Feb 2022
Viewed by 677
Abstract
The reactivity of a heterogeneous rhodium(III) and ruthenium(II) complex-functionalized TiO2 nanoparticle (NP) system is reported. The ruthenium and rhodium metal complexes work in tandem on the TiO2 NPs surface to generate H2 through water reduction under simulated and normal sunlight [...] Read more.
The reactivity of a heterogeneous rhodium(III) and ruthenium(II) complex-functionalized TiO2 nanoparticle (NP) system is reported. The ruthenium and rhodium metal complexes work in tandem on the TiO2 NPs surface to generate H2 through water reduction under simulated and normal sunlight irradiation. The functionalized TiO2 NPs outperformed previously reported homogeneous systems in turnover number (TON) and frequency (TOF). The influence of individual components within the system, such as pH, additive, and catalyst, were tested. The NP material was characterized using TGA-MS, 1H NMR spectroscopy, FTIR spectroscopy, solid absorption spectroscopy, and ICP-MS. Gas chromatography was used to determine the reaction kinetics and recyclability of the NP-supported photocatalyst. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Nanomaterials for Water Splitting)
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Review

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Review
Development and Functionalization of Visible-Light-Driven Water-Splitting Photocatalysts
Nanomaterials 2022, 12(3), 344; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano12030344 - 21 Jan 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1912
Abstract
With global warming and the depletion of fossil resources, our fossil fuel-dependent society is expected to shift to one that instead uses hydrogen (H2) as a clean and renewable energy. To realize this, the photocatalytic water-splitting reaction, which produces H2 [...] Read more.
With global warming and the depletion of fossil resources, our fossil fuel-dependent society is expected to shift to one that instead uses hydrogen (H2) as a clean and renewable energy. To realize this, the photocatalytic water-splitting reaction, which produces H2 from water and solar energy through photocatalysis, has attracted much attention. However, for practical use, the functionality of water-splitting photocatalysts must be further improved to efficiently absorb visible (Vis) light, which accounts for the majority of sunlight. Considering the mechanism of water-splitting photocatalysis, researchers in the various fields must be employed in this type of study to achieve this. However, for researchers in fields other than catalytic chemistry, ceramic (semiconductor) materials chemistry, and electrochemistry to participate in this field, new reviews that summarize previous reports on water-splitting photocatalysis seem to be needed. Therefore, in this review, we summarize recent studies on the development and functionalization of Vis-light-driven water-splitting photocatalysts. Through this summary, we aim to share current technology and future challenges with readers in the various fields and help expedite the practical application of Vis-light-driven water-splitting photocatalysts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Nanomaterials for Water Splitting)
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