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Title: Enabling unassisted solar water splitting by iron oxide and silicon

A solution for large-scale solar energy storage is photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting. However, its development has been impeded by the poor performance of photoanodes, particularly in their capability for photovoltage generation. Many examples employing photovoltaic modules to correct the deficiency for unassisted solar water splitting have been reported to-date. We show that, by using the prototypical photoanode material of haematite as a study tool, structural disorders on or near the surfaces are important causes of the low photovoltages. We develop a facile re-growth strategy to reduce surface disorders and as a consequence, a turn-on voltage of 0.45 V (versus reversible hydrogen electrode) is achieved. In conclusion, this result permits us to construct a photoelectrochemical device with a haematite photoanode and Si photocathode to split water at an overall efficiency of 0.91%, with NiFeOx and TiO2/Pt overlayers, respectively.
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [4] ;  [3] ;  [5] ;  [1]
  1. Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA (United States)
  2. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Univ. of Science and Technology, Hefei (China)
  3. Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States)
  4. Univ. of Science and Technology, Hefei (China)
  5. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nature Communications
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 6; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States