A Caltech Library Service

Protection of inorganic semiconductors for sustained, efficient photoelectrochemical water oxidation

Lichterman, Michael F. and Sun, Ke and Hu, Shu and Zhou, Xinghao and McDowell, Matthew T. and Shaner, Matthew R. and Richter, Matthias H. and Crumlin, Ethan J. and Carim, Azhar I. and Saadi, Fadl H. and Brunschwig, Bruce S. and Lewis, Nathan S. (2016) Protection of inorganic semiconductors for sustained, efficient photoelectrochemical water oxidation. Catalysis Today, 262 . pp. 11-23. ISSN 0920-5861. doi:10.1016/j.cattod.2015.08.017.

Full text is not posted in this repository. Consult Related URLs below.

Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Small-band-gap (E_g < 2 eV) semiconductors must be stabilized for use in integrated devices that convert solar energy into the bonding energy of a reduced fuel, specifically H_2(g) or a reduced-carbon species such as CH_3OH or CH_4. To sustainably and scalably complete the fuel cycle, electrons must be liberated through the oxidation of water to O_2(g). Strongly acidic or strongly alkaline electrolytes are needed to enable efficient and intrinsically safe operation of a full solar-driven water-splitting system. However, under water-oxidation conditions, the small-band-gap semiconductors required for efficient cell operation are unstable, either dissolving or forming insulating surface oxides. We describe herein recent progress in the protection of semiconductor photoanodes under such operational conditions. We specifically describe the properties of two protective overlayers, TiO_2/Ni and NiO_x, both of which have demonstrated the ability to protect otherwise unstable semiconductors for >100 h of continuous solar-driven water oxidation when in contact with a highly alkaline aqueous electrolyte (1.0 M KOH(aq)). The stabilization of various semiconductor photoanodes is reviewed in the context of the electronic characteristics and a mechanistic analysis of the TiO_2 films, along with a discussion of the optical, catalytic, and electronic nature of NiO_x films for stabilization of semiconductor photoanodes for water oxidation.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Lichterman, Michael F.0000-0002-0710-7068
Sun, Ke0000-0001-8209-364X
Hu, Shu0000-0002-5041-0169
Zhou, Xinghao0000-0001-9229-7670
McDowell, Matthew T.0000-0001-5552-3456
Shaner, Matthew R.0000-0003-4682-9757
Richter, Matthias H.0000-0003-0091-2045
Crumlin, Ethan J.0000-0003-3132-190X
Carim, Azhar I.0000-0003-3630-6872
Saadi, Fadl H.0000-0003-3941-0464
Brunschwig, Bruce S.0000-0002-6135-6727
Lewis, Nathan S.0000-0001-5245-0538
Additional Information:© 2015 Elsevier B.V. Received 3 July 2015; Received in revised form 18 August 2015; Accepted 20 August 2015; Available online 25 October 2015. This work was supported through the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) under award no. DE-SC0004993 to the Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, a DOE Energy Innovation Hub, as well as by the Moore Foundation. The Advanced Light Source is supported by the Director, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, of the U.S. Department of Energy under Contract no. DE-AC02-05CH11231. The authors thank Van Seebass for assistance in the preparation of this manuscript.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Department of Energy (DOE)DE-SC0004993
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Department of Energy (DOE)DE-AC02-05CH11231
Subject Keywords:Artificial photosynthesis; Photoelectrochemistry; Corrosion; Catalysis
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20151106-151700406
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Michael F. Lichterman, Ke Sun, Shu Hu, Xinghao Zhou, Matthew T. McDowell, Matthew R. Shaner, Matthias H. Richter, Ethan J. Crumlin, Azhar I. Carim, Fadl H. Saadi, Bruce S. Brunschwig, Nathan S. Lewis, Protection of inorganic semiconductors for sustained, efficient photoelectrochemical water oxidation, Catalysis Today, Volume 262, 15 March 2016, Pages 11-23, ISSN 0920-5861,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:61970
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:06 Nov 2015 23:52
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 22:56

Repository Staff Only: item control page