Enhanced Solar Water Splitting Performance of 50-100 nm Pore Sized TiO2 Nanotubes

K. Kathiresan1, P. Elangovan2,* and M.S.S. Saravanakumaar3

1Department of Physics, P.S.N.A. College of Engineering & Technology, Dindigul-624622, India

2PG & Research Department of Physics, Pachaiyappa's College, Chennai-600030, India

3Department of Physics, Saraswathi Narayanan College (Autonomous), Madurai-625022, India

*Corresponding author: E-mail: drelangovanphysics@gmail.com

Abstract

Herein, we report the fabrication of titanium dioxide nanotubes via anodization technique through with and without hydrofluoric acid . The impact of hydrofluoric acid followed by annealing effect on TiO2 nanotubes for the solar water splitting performance was examined. Prepared TiO2 samples exhibited a diameter of about 50 to 100 nm sized nanotubes and hierarchical structures and they subjected to annealing. Synthesis and annealing effects on chemical, physical and photoelectrochemical water splitting activity of TiO2 samples were scrutinized. The crystalline nature, structure and surface morphologies of prepared TiO2 photocatalysts were explored by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscope, and the oxidation states of both titanium and oxygen was determined by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. As a consequence, after annealing at 500 ºC, TiO2 thin films treated with hydrofluoric acid solution (HF-TiO2) were found to exhibit a remarkable photoelectrochemical performance than bare TiO2 nanotubes under UV light irradiation. Moreover, the mechanistic insights acquired in the current research would be beneficial to design a novel and highly efficient photocatalyst for solar water splitting systems.

Keywords

TiO2 nanotubes, Hydrofluoric acid, Water splitting, Band blending, Hydrogen energy.

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