Codoping titanium dioxide nanowires with tungsten and carbon for enhanced photoelectrochemical performance

In Sun Cho, Chi Hwan Lee, Yunzhe Feng, Manca Logar, Pratap M. Rao, Lili Cai, Dong Rip Kim, Robert Sinclair, Xiaolin Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Recent density-functional theory calculations suggest that codoping TiO 2 with donor-acceptor pairs is more effective than monodoping for improving photoelectrochemical water-splitting performance because codoping can reduce charge recombination, improve material quality, enhance light absorption and increase solubility limits of dopants. Here we report a novel ex-situ method to codope TiO2 with tungsten and carbon (W, C) by sequentially annealing W-precursor-coated TiO2 nanowires in flame and carbon monoxide gas. The unique advantages of flame annealing are that the high temperature (>1,000°C) and fast heating rate of flame enable rapid diffusion of W into TiO2 without damaging the nanowire morphology and crystallinity. This is the first experimental demonstration that codoped TiO2:(W, C) nanowires outperform monodoped TiO2:W and TiO2:C and double the saturation photocurrent of undoped TiO2 for photoelectrochemical water splitting. Such significant performance enhancement originates from a greatly improved electrical conductivity and activity for oxygen-evolution reaction due to the synergistic effects of codoping.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1723
JournalNature communications
Volume4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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    Cho, I. S., Lee, C. H., Feng, Y., Logar, M., Rao, P. M., Cai, L., Kim, D. R., Sinclair, R., & Zheng, X. (2013). Codoping titanium dioxide nanowires with tungsten and carbon for enhanced photoelectrochemical performance. Nature communications, 4, [1723]. https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms2729