Solar-driven photocatalytic production of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) requires only sunlight, oxygen, and water, making it a green and sustainable alternative to conventional H2O2 production processes. We present photocatalytic carbon dots (CDs) as a new candidate for high-performance H2O2 production. Owing to the generation of an excellent charge carrier and the presence of various oxygen-containing functional groups, CDs showed an outstanding H2O2 production capability of 609.4 μmol g−1 h−1 even in the absence of an electron donor, demonstrating promising self-electron-donating capabilities. Hydroxyl groups on their surface, in particular, serve a dual role as photocatalytic active sites and as electron and proton donors toward the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). The photocatalytic activity of CDs was significantly improved to 1187.8 μmol g−1 by functionalizing their surfaces with anthraquinone (AQ) as a co-catalyst; it promoted the charge carrier separation and electrochemically favored the two-electron pathway of ORR. These carbon-based metal-free nanohybrids that are a unique combination of CDs and AQ could offer insights into designing efficient photocatalysts for future solar-to-H2O2 conversion systems.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Mr. Taehyung Kim and Ms. Namhee Kim for assisting with the acquisition of solid-state 13 C NMR spectra. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Republic of Korea ( NRF-2021R1F1A1063702 , NRF-2021R1C1C1007706 , NRF-2021M3H4A1A03049662 , NRF-2017R1A2B3012148 , and NRF-2017M3A7B4052802 ) and by ICONS (Institute of Convergence Science), Yonsei University .
© 2022 Elsevier B.V.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Science(all)
- Process Chemistry and Technology