Water-splitting photoelectrodes consisting of heterojunctions of carbon nitride with a p-type low bandgap double perovskite oxide

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  • Quinary and senary non-stoichiometric double perovskites such as Ba2Ca0.66Nb1.34−xFexO6−δ (BCNF) have been utilized for gas sensing, solid oxide fuel cells and thermochemical CO2 reduction. Herein, we examined their potential as narrow bandgap semiconductors for use in solar energy harvesting. A cobalt co-doped BCNF, Ba2Ca0.66Nb0.68Fe0.33Co0.33O6−δ (BCNFCo), exhibited an optical absorption edge at ∼800 nm, p-type conduction and a distinct photoresponse up to 640 nm while demonstrating high thermochemical stability. A nanocomposite of BCNFCo and g-C3N4 (CN) was prepared via a facile solvent-assisted exfoliation/blending approach using dichlorobenzene and glycerol at a moderate temperature. The exfoliation of g-C3N4 followed by wrapping on perovskite established an effective heterojunction between the materials for charge separation. The conjugated 2D sheets of CN enabled better charge migration resulting in increased photoelectrochemical performance. A blend composed of 40 wt% perovskites and CN performed optimally, whilst achieving a photocurrent density as high as 1.5 mA cm−2 for sunlight-driven water-splitting with a Faradaic efficiency as high as ∼88%.

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    Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International