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Identifying champion nanostructures for solar water-splitting

Warren, S.C.; Voïtchovsky, K.; Dotan, H.; Leroy, C.M.; Cornuz, M.; Stellacci, F.; Hébert, C.; Rothschild, A.; Grätzel, M.

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S.C. Warren

H. Dotan

C.M. Leroy

M. Cornuz

F. Stellacci

C. Hébert

A. Rothschild

M. Grätzel


Charge transport in nanoparticle-based materials underlies many emerging energy-conversion technologies, yet assessing the impact of nanometre-scale structure on charge transport across micrometre-scale distances remains a challenge. Here we develop an approach for correlating the spatial distribution of crystalline and current-carrying domains in entire nanoparticle aggregates. We apply this approach to nanoparticle-based α-Fe2O3 electrodes that are of interest in solar-to-hydrogen energy conversion. In correlating structure and charge transport with nanometre resolution across micrometre-scale distances, we have identified the existence of champion nanoparticle aggregates that are most responsible for the high photoelectrochemical activity of the present electrodes. Indeed, when electrodes are fabricated with a high proportion of these champion nanostructures, the electrodes achieve the highest photocurrent of any metal oxide photoanode for photoelectrochemical water-splitting under 100 mW cm−2 air mass 1.5 global sunlight.


Warren, S., Voïtchovsky, K., Dotan, H., Leroy, C., Cornuz, M., Stellacci, F., …Grätzel, M. (2013). Identifying champion nanostructures for solar water-splitting. Nature Materials, 12(9), 842-849.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Sep 1, 2013
Deposit Date Sep 26, 2013
Publicly Available Date Dec 11, 2014
Journal Nature Materials
Print ISSN 1476-1122
Electronic ISSN 1476-4660
Publisher Nature Research
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 12
Issue 9
Pages 842-849


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