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Unraveling structural properties of Cu2O loaded on gC3N4 for enhanced photocatalytic hydrogen generation


Hanggara Sudrajat

Source title: 
Materials Research Express, 5, 2018 (ISI)
Academic year of acceptance: 

In this study, we load Cu2O into gC3N4 via an ultrasonic reduction method. By doing so, the steady-state electron population is increased by 3 times. Due to the revealed critical role of Cu2O in enhancing the electron population in gC3N4, the structural features of the loaded Cu2O are studied with synchrotron x-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS), including x-ray absorption near edge spectroscopy (XANES) and extended x-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS). Results show that the Cu species are present in +1 oxidation state in the form of nano-sized Cu2O. Each Cu cation is approximately coordinated to 2 O anions with an average length of 1.85 Å. Loading 1 wt% of Cu2O into gC3N4 generates H2 with a rate of 7.53 μmol/g centerdot h, which is more than 5-fold of bare gC3N4 (1.44 μmol/g centerdot h), under visible light irradiation in the presence of methanol as holes scavenger. The examined Cu2O/gC3N4 shows appreciable stability within 5 cycles of H2 generation.