• hydrogen;
  • nanostructures;
  • photochemistry;
  • silver;
  • water splitting


A facile strategy based on the principle of the Kirkendall effect has been developed to synthesize hollow nanoframes and nanoshells of AgI:Ag composites through the controlled anion-exchange reaction between I ions and solid AgBr:Ag (or AgCl:Ag) nanoparticles that serve as templates. Regardless of the morphologies of the template nanoparticles, they can be chemically transformed to hollow AgI:Ag structures with morphologies similar to those of the templates. The synthesized hollow AgI:Ag nanostructures can be used as efficient photocatalysts for H2 generation from water reduction and the decomposition of organic pollutants owing to the enhanced absorption of visible light by the Ag components in the hybrid nanostructures. The hollow nanostructures exhibit a higher photocatalytic performance than the corresponding solid nanoparticles possibly because of the large surface area and unique AgI/Ag interfaces associated with the hollow nanostructures.