The study realized efficient photocatalytic production of hydrogen peroxide by simulating blades

Recently, the team of Liu Jian, a researcher at the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and the team of Zhang Xiwang, a professor at the University of Queensland in Australia, have made new progress in the research of artificial photosynthesis of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). By simulating the stomatal structure of plant leaves, the team effectively improved the performance of the catalyst photocatalytic production of H2O2, and the conversion rate from solar energy to chemical energy reached 1.23%. The results were published in Advanced Functional Materials.

Schematic diagram of the simulated structure (Photo courtesy of the research team)

Artificial photosynthesis can use solar energy to convert the earth’s abundant resources into the necessary substances for sustainable development. In recent years, H2O2 has attracted a lot of attention because it has a wide range of applications, as an oxidizing agent and an emerging energy fuel. However, the current efficiency of photocatalytic production of H2O2 is still low.

As a narrow-bandgap semiconductor polymer, RF resins have shown significant potential in photocatalytic production of H2O2 in recent years.

In this work, the collaborative team uses the micellar-mediated interface self-assembly strategy to grow a two-dimensional mesoporous resorcinol-formaldehyde (RF) resin on the surface of reduced graphene oxide (rGO), forming a sandwich structure of RF resin-rGO-RF resin. The mesoporous channels in the material are like the pores of plant leaves, which can effectively improve the mass transfer capacity of the material.

The collaborative team promoted the photocatalytic ability of photocatalysts by enhancing the electron transport and mass transfer capabilities of the material. And under the simulation of sunlight, 1.23% of the conversion of solar energy to chemical energy can be achieved, which is the highest efficiency value in the field of photocatalytic H2O2 production of powder catalysts reported in the literature. (Source: Sun Danning, China Science News)

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