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Tandem Cuprous Oxide/Silicon Microwire Hydrogen-Evolving Photocathode with Photovoltage Exceeding 1.3 V


Vijselaar, Wouter; Kunturu, Pramod Patil; Moehl, Thomas; Tilley, David; Huskens, Jurriaan (2019). Tandem Cuprous Oxide/Silicon Microwire Hydrogen-Evolving Photocathode with Photovoltage Exceeding 1.3 V. ACS Energy Letters, 4(9):2287-2294.

Abstract

Large research efforts have been devoted to optimizing the output of earth-abundant photoabsorbers in solar-to-fuel (S2F) devices. Here, we report a Cu2O/Ga2O3 heterojunction/Si microwire photocathode with an underlying buried radial Si p–n junction, which achieves efficient light harvesting across the visible spectrum to over 600 nm, reaching an external quantum yield for hydrogen generation close to 80%, with a photocurrent onset above +1.35 V vs RHE, a photocurrent density of ∼10 mA/cm2 at 0 V vs RHE, and an ideal regenerative efficiency of 5.51%. We show step-by-step the effects of every photocathode design element (i.e., Si p–n junction, Cu2O layer thickness, microwire length, microwire pitch, etc.) on the overall efficiency of our final microwire Si/Cu2O photocathode by comparing every addition to a baseline Cu2O photocathode. Lastly, we show a stable operation exceeding 200 h at a bias potential of +1.0 V vs RHE, with an average current density of 4.5 mA/cm2.

Abstract

Large research efforts have been devoted to optimizing the output of earth-abundant photoabsorbers in solar-to-fuel (S2F) devices. Here, we report a Cu2O/Ga2O3 heterojunction/Si microwire photocathode with an underlying buried radial Si p–n junction, which achieves efficient light harvesting across the visible spectrum to over 600 nm, reaching an external quantum yield for hydrogen generation close to 80%, with a photocurrent onset above +1.35 V vs RHE, a photocurrent density of ∼10 mA/cm2 at 0 V vs RHE, and an ideal regenerative efficiency of 5.51%. We show step-by-step the effects of every photocathode design element (i.e., Si p–n junction, Cu2O layer thickness, microwire length, microwire pitch, etc.) on the overall efficiency of our final microwire Si/Cu2O photocathode by comparing every addition to a baseline Cu2O photocathode. Lastly, we show a stable operation exceeding 200 h at a bias potential of +1.0 V vs RHE, with an average current density of 4.5 mA/cm2.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Department of Chemistry
08 Research Priority Programs > Solar Light to Chemical Energy Conversion
Dewey Decimal Classification:540 Chemistry
Language:English
Date:13 September 2019
Deposited On:07 Feb 2020 16:01
Last Modified:12 Mar 2020 09:34
Publisher:American Chemical Society (ACS)
ISSN:2380-8195
OA Status:Hybrid
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1021/acsenergylett.9b01402
Project Information:
  • : FunderSNSF
  • : Grant IDPYAPP2_160586
  • : Project TitleSolar Water Splitting: Photovoltage, Surface Dipole, and Catalysis Strategies
  • : FunderFOM
  • : Grant ID13CO12-2
  • : Project Title

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