Enhanced Visible-Light Hydrogen-Production Activity of Copper-Modified ZnxCd1−xS

Authors

  • Dr. Jun Zhang,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Advanced Technology for Materials Synthesis and Processing, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan 430070 (P.R. China)
    2. School of Chemical Engineering, The University of Adelaide, SA 5005 (Australia)
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  • Quanlong Xu,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Advanced Technology for Materials Synthesis and Processing, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan 430070 (P.R. China)
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  • Prof. Shi Zhang Qiao,

    Corresponding author
    1. School of Chemical Engineering, The University of Adelaide, SA 5005 (Australia)
    • Shi Zhang Qiao, School of Chemical Engineering, The University of Adelaide, SA 5005 (Australia)

      Jiaguo Yu, State Key Laboratory of Advanced Technology for Materials Synthesis and Processing, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan 430070 (P.R. China)

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  • Prof. Jiaguo Yu

    Corresponding author
    1. State Key Laboratory of Advanced Technology for Materials Synthesis and Processing, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan 430070 (P.R. China)
    • Shi Zhang Qiao, School of Chemical Engineering, The University of Adelaide, SA 5005 (Australia)

      Jiaguo Yu, State Key Laboratory of Advanced Technology for Materials Synthesis and Processing, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan 430070 (P.R. China)

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Abstract

Copper modification is an efficient way to enhance the photocatalytic activity of ZnS-based materials; however, the mechanisms of Cu2+ surface and bulk modifications for improving the activity are quite different. In this work, two different synthetic pathways were devised to prepare surface and bulk Cu2+-modified ZnxCd1−xS photocatalysts through cation-exchange and coprecipitation methods, respectively. Different Cu2+ modifications brought different effects on the phase structure, morphology, surface area, optical property, as well as the photocatalytic H2-production activity of the final products. The optimized Cu2+-surface-modified ZnxCd1−xS photocatalyst has a high H2-production rate of 4638.5 μmol h−1 g−1 and an apparent quantum efficiency of 20.9 % at 420 nm, exceeding that of Cu2+-bulk-modified catalyst at the same copper content. Cu2+ surface modification not only brings a new electron-transferring pathway (interfacial charge transfer), but also produces new surface active sites for H2 evolution, reducing the recombination rate of photogenerated charge carriers.

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