Plasmon-Dictated Photo-Electrochemical Water Splitting for Solar-to-Chemical Energy Conversion : Current Status and Future Perspectives

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Original languageEnglish
Article number1701098
Journal / PublicationAdvanced Materials Interfaces
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 23 Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes


Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) effect of metal nanostructures is established as an efficient and attractive strategy to boost visible-light or even near-infrared-responsive photo-electrochemical (PEC) water splitting devices for substantial solar-to-chemical energy conversion. Rational integration of plasmonic metal nanostructures with semiconductors in an appropriate fashion is beneficial for creating a large variety of plasmonic metal/semiconductor photoelectrodes. However, up to date, construction of well-defined and highly efficient plasmonic metal/semiconductor heterostructures is still in its infant stage. In this review, basic principles of PEC water splitting over semiconductors, SPR-excited plasmonic effect of metal nanostructures, and their intrinsic correlation with each other are first concisely introduced. Subsequently, it is paid great attention to specifically summarize the diverse plasmonic metal/semiconductor photoelectrodes currently being extensively explored for indirect plasmon-induced PEC water splitting. Particularly, different plasmonic metal/semiconductor nanoarchitectures including planar thin films, 1D composited, and 3D spatially hierarchical heterostructures are systematically classified and elucidated. Finally, future perspectives and challenges in triggering further innovative thinking on plasmon-enhanced solar water splitting are envisaged. It is anticipated that this review can provide enriched information on rational design and construction of various plasmonic metal/semiconductor heterostructures for solar-powered plasmon-based PEC devices. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim

Research Area(s)

  • heterostructures, noble metal, photo-electrochemical water splitting, surface plasmon resonance

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