International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, Vol.44, No.2, 778-787, 2019
Simultaneously engineering K-doping and exfoliation into graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) for enhanced photocatalytic hydrogen production
Doping and exfoliation are effective strategies to improve the photocatalytic activity of bulk graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4). Therefore, it can be inferred that engineering element-doping and exfoliation into g-C3N4 would further enhance the photocatalytic performance. Herein, we demonstrated a KOH-assisted hydrothermal-reformed melamine strategy for achieving the simultaneous K-doping and exfoliation of g-C3N4. The as synthesized K-doped g-C3N4 ultrathin nanosheets displayed much enhanced photo catalytic hydrogen evolution rate (HER) of about 13.1 times higher than that of the bulk g-C3N4 under visible-light irradiation, achieving an apparent quantum efficiency of 6.98% at 420 nm. The improved photocatalytic HER can be attributed to the high surface area offering numerous photocatalytic active sites, enlarged conductive band edge optimizing photoreduction potential, and K-doping promoting charge generation and separation as well as the long life-time of photogenerated carriers. This work would provide a promising way to integrate co-doping and exfoliation into new g-C3N4-based materials. (C) 2018 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.