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Synthesis and Performance of Photocatalysts for Photocatalytic Hydrogen Production: Future Perspectives


Photocatalysis for “green” hydrogen production is a technology of increasing importance that has been studied using both TiO2–based and heterojunction composite-based semiconductors. Different irradiation sources and reactor units can be considered for the enhancement of photocatalysis. Current approaches also consider the use of electron/hole scavengers, organic species, such as ethanol, that are “available” in agricultural waste, in communities around the world. Alternatively, organic pollutants present in wastewaters can be used as organic scavengers, reducing health and environmental concerns for plants, animals, and humans. Thus, photocatalysis may help reduce the carbon footprint of energy production by generating H2 , a friendly energy carrier, and by minimizing water contamination. This review discusses the most up-to-date and important information on photocatalysis for hydrogen production, providing a critical evaluation of: (1) The synthesis and characterization of semiconductor materials; (2) The design of photocatalytic reactors; (3) The reaction engineering of photocatalysis; (4) Photocatalysis energy efficiencies; and (5) The future opportunities for photocatalysis using artificial intelligence. Overall, this review describes the state-of-the-art of TiO2–based and heterojunction composite-based semiconductors that produce H2 from aqueous systems, demonstrating the viability of photocatalysis for “green” hydrogen production.

Funding source: This research was funded by the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), through the Hugo de Lasa’s NSERC Discovery Grant.
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Canada

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