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Rational design of photoelectrochemical cells towards bias-free water splitting: Thermodynamic and kinetic insights

journal contribution
posted on 04.05.2020 by Hao Zhang, H Wang, Jin Xuan
© 2020 Elsevier B.V. Photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting offers a promising way to produce hydrogen and harvest solar energy, however, its low efficiency has made it less economically attractive than other hydrogen production methods. Herein we present a numerical model of PEC cells considering quasi-fermi level splitting and interfacial kinetics to understand the charge transfer process and explore the approaches to increase the energy conversion efficiency. The non-linear change of photocurrent with light intensity under concentrated illumination is for the first time captured by a model. Based on the model, the operation regions of a PEC cell are mapped. Pathways to further promote the energy efficiency of PEC are proposed from the aspect of kinetics and thermodynamics. A new method that enables a precise evaluation of the theoretical boundaries of energy conversion efficiency of photocatalysts is developed taking into account the thermodynamics barrier.

Funding

UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) via grant number EP/R012164/2 and EP/S000933/1

History

School

  • Aeronautical, Automotive, Chemical and Materials Engineering

Department

  • Chemical Engineering

Published in

Journal of Power Sources

Volume

462

Pages

228113

Publisher

Elsevier

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Rights holder

© Elsevier

Publisher statement

This paper was accepted for publication in the journal Journal of Power Sources and the definitive published version is available at https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpowsour.2020.228113

Acceptance date

25/03/2020

Publication date

2020-04-18

Copyright date

2020

ISSN

0378-7753

Language

en

Depositor

Prof Jin Xuan. Deposit date: 4 May 2020

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