Ultrathin Nanosheets for Photocatalysis

  • Author: Hayley Charville
  • Published Date: 09 February 2015
  • Source / Publisher: ChemCatChem/Wiley-VCH
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
thumbnail image: Ultrathin Nanosheets for Photocatalysis

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Photocatalytic H2 production attracts much attention and there are numerous semiconductors that are capable of this photochemical reaction. For example, two-dimensional perovskite niobate nanosheets prepared by the exfoliation of bulk layered AB2Nb3O10 (A = H, Rb, K, Cs; B = Ca, Pb, Sr) have attracted great interest. However, the exfoliation of niobates is a time-consuming process and the low yields restrict the mass preparation and applications of these exfoliated perovskite nanosheets.

Yuchao Hu and Liejin Guo, Xi'an Jiaotong University, China, have developed a high-powered ultrasonic method for the rapid and high-yielding exfoliation of HPb2Nb3O10 into (TBA/H)Pb2Nb3O10 (TBA = tetrabutylammonium) nanosheets. These nanosheets were used as a photocatalyst for H2 production from methanol solution under visible light irradiation and showed increased activity when compared with bulk HPb2Nb3O10. This enhanced performance is mainly because of a shortened migration distance for the photoexcited electrons.

The described ultrasonic-assisted exfoliation method could also be applied to the preparation of other niobate nanosheets.

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