Photoelectrochemical activity of Ag loaded TiO2 nanotube arrays produced by sequential chemical bath deposition for water splitting
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We report on remarkable improvement of photoelectrochemical (PEC) properties of TiO2 nanotubes by loading of Ag nanoparticles into them. The silver nanoparticles were loaded on the nanotubes by sequential chemical bath deposition (S-CBD) with different number of deposition cycles. Various characterizations including field emission scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and energy dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX), all confirm that the silver nanoparticles were deposited inside and outside of TiO2 nanotubes. In addition, the PEC properties of the samples were investigated using linear sweep voltammetry, chronoamperometry, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. The PEC analyses clearly show that the photo-electrochemical activity of the Ag-loaded samples are considerably higher than the bare TiO2 nanotubes (about 3 times). This mostly originates from the improvement of light absorption due to the plasmonic effects in addition to better separation and transport of electron–hole pairs in the Ag-loaded samples relative to the bare TiO2 nanotubes. All results indicate that the maximum efficiency were obtained for the 8-cycle of S-CBD Ag-loading on the bare TiO2 nanotubes.
We acknowledge Tarbiat Modares University for funding support of this work.
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