Mg-Doped CuFeO2 photocathodes for photoelectrochemical reduction of carbon dioxide

Jing Gu, Anna Wuttig, Jason W. Krizan, Yuan Hu, Zachary M. Detweiler, Robert Joseph Cava, Andrew Bruce Bocarsly

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163 Scopus citations


Mg-doped CuFeO2 delafossite is reported to be photoelectrochemically active for CO2 reduction. The material was prepared via conventional solid-state methods, and subsequently assembled into an electrode as a pressed pellet. Addition of a Mg2+ dopant is found to substantially improve the conductivity of the material, with 0.05% Mg-doped CuFeO2 electrodes displaying photocathodic currents under visible irradiation. Photocurrent is found to onset at irradiation wavelengths of ∼800 nm with the incident photon-to-current efficiency reaching a value of 14% at 340 nm using an applied electrode potential of -0.4 V vs SCE. Photoelectrodes were determined to have a -1.1 V vs SCE conduction band edge and were found capable of the reduction of CO2 to formate at 400 mV of underpotential. The conversion efficiency is maximized at -0.9 V vs SCE, with H2 production contributing as a considerable side reaction. These results highlight the potential to produce Mg-doped p-type metal oxide photocathodes with a band structure tuned to optimize CO2 reduction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12415-12422
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number24
StatePublished - Jun 20 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • General Energy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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