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Sensitization of Pt/TiO2 Using Plasmonic Au Nanoparticles for Hydrogen Evolution under Visible-Light Irradiation

Author:
Wang, Fenglong, Wong, Roong Jien, Ho, Jie Hui, Jiang, Yijiao, Amal, Rose
Source:
ACS applied materials & interfaces 2017 v.9 no.36 pp. 30575-30582
ISSN:
1944-8252
Subject:
3-mercaptopropionic acid, aqueous solutions, catalysts, electrons, energy-dispersive X-ray analysis, gold, hydrogen, hydrogen production, ions, irradiation, lighting, methanol, nanogold, nanoparticles, photocatalysis, titanium dioxide
Abstract:
Au nanoparticles with different sizes (10, 20, 30, and 50 nm) were synthesized using a seed-assisted approach and anchored onto Pt/TiO₂ employing 3-mercaptopropionic acid as the organic linker. The sizes of the Au nanoparticles were controlled within a narrow range so that the size-dependent surface plasmonic resonance effect on sensitizing Pt/TiO₂ can be thoroughly studied. We found that 20 nm Au nanoparticles (Au₂₀) gave the best performance in sensitizing Pt/TiO₂ to generate H₂ under visible-light illumination. Photoelectrochemical measurements indicated that Au₂₀-Pt/TiO₂ exhibited the most efficient “hot” electrons separation among the studied catalysts, correlating well with the photocatalytic activity. The superior performance of Au-supported Pt/TiO₂ (Au₂₀-Pt/TiO₂) compared with Au anchored to TiO₂ (Au₂₀/TiO₂) revealed the important role of Pt as a cocatalyst for proton reduction. To elucidate how the visible-light excited hot electrons in Au nanoparticles involved in the proton-reduction reaction process, Au₂₀/TiO₂ was irradiated by visible light (λ > 420 nm) with the presence of Pt precursor (H₂PtCl₆) in a methanol aqueous solution under deaerated condition. Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy mapping analysis on the recovered sample showed that Pt ions could be reduced on the surfaces of both Au nanoparticles and TiO₂ support. This observation indicated that the generated hot electrons on Au nanoparticles were injected into the TiO₂ conduction band, which were then subsequently transferred to Pt nanoparticles where proton reduction proceeded. Besides, the excited hot electrons could also participate in the proton reduction on Au nanoparticles surface.
Agid:
5801945