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Control of Electrons’ Spin Eliminates Hydrogen Peroxide Formation During Water Splitting

Abstract

The production of hydrogen through water splitting in a photoelectrochemical cell suffers from an overpotential that limits the efficiencies. In addition, hydrogen-peroxide formation is identified as a competing process affecting the oxidative stability of photoelectrodes. We impose spin-selectivity by coating the anode with chiral organic semiconductors from helically aggregated dyes as sensitizers; Zn-porphyrins and triarylamines. Hydrogen peroxide formation is dramatically suppressed, while the overall current through the cell, correlating with the water splitting process, is enhanced. Evidence for a strong spin-selection in the chiral semiconductors is presented by magnetic conducting (mc-)AFM measurements, in which chiral and achiral Zn-porphyrins are compared. These findings contribute to our understanding of the underlying mechanism of spin selectivity in multiple electron-transfer reactions and pave the way toward better chiral dye-sensitized photoelectrochemical cells.

Funding source: European Research Council; EURO-SEQUENCES; FMS Gravitation Program
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Israel ; Italy ; Netherlands
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/content/journal1442
2017-07-30
2021-12-02
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journal1442
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