Plasmonic Au nanoclusters dispersed in nitrogen-doped graphene as a robust photocatalyst for light-to-hydrogen conversion

Dung Van Dao, Luis A. Cipriano, Giovanni Di Liberto, Thuy T.D. Nguyen, Sang Woo Ki, Hoki Son, Gyu Cheol Kim, Kang Hyun Lee, Jin Kyu Yang, Yeon Tae Yu, Gianfranco Pacchioni, In Hwan Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Supported plasmonic Au nanoclusters (NCs) consisting of a few tens of atoms can potentially offer great advantages for the light-driven hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). Here, we report on the synthesis of well-dispersed and stable plasmonic Au NCs of 0.5-1.0 nm size on nitrogen-doped high surface area graphene (N-Gr)viafreeze-drying and pyrolyzing in argon. The Au NCs/N-Gr photocatalyst exhibits under visible-light an impressive HER achievement (3.16 μmol mgcat−1h−1) compared to Au single atoms/N-Gr (2.06 μmol mgcat−1h−1) and Au nanoparticles (20 nm size)/N-Gr (0.92 μmol mgcat−1h−1), with a maximum apparent quantum yield of 14.30%. These performances are synergistically attributed to two effects: (a) the strong surface plasmon resonance stimulated by light absorption and transferred near the surface of Au NCs, where the N-Gr conductive support can prolong the plasmon-produced hot electrons and direct the light-to-hydrogen conversion; (b) a high catalytic efficiency of Au NCs/N-Gr nanocomposites.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22810-22819
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry A
Volume9
Issue number40
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Oct 28

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Materials Science(all)

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