Long-term solar water and CO2 splitting with photoelectrochemical BiOI-BiVO 4 tandems

Virgil Andrei, Robert A Jagt, Motiar Rahaman, Leonardo Lari, Vlado K Lazarov, Judith L MacManus-Driscoll, Robert L Z Hoye, Erwin Reisner

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Photoelectrochemical (PEC) devices have been developed for direct solar fuel production but the limited stability of submerged light absorbers can hamper their commercial prospects. 1,2 Here, we demonstrate photocathodes with an operational H 2 evolution activity over weeks, by integrating a BiOI light absorber into a robust, oxide-based architecture with a graphite paste conductive encapsulant. In this case, the activity towards proton and CO 2 reduction is mainly limited by catalyst degradation. We also introduce multiple-pixel devices as an innovative design principle for PEC systems, displaying superior photocurrents, onset biases and stability over corresponding conventional single-pixel devices. Accordingly, PEC tandem devices comprising multiple-pixel BiOI photocathodes and BiVO 4 photoanodes can sustain bias-free water splitting for 240 h, while devices with a Cu 92In 8 alloy catalyst demonstrate unassisted syngas production from CO 2.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Materials
Early online date26 May 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 26 May 2022

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