Inorganic Chemistry, Vol.59, No.2, 1566-1575, 2020
New Versatile Synthetic Route for the Preparation of Metal Phosphate Decorated Hydrogen Evolution Photocatalysts
Photocatalytic hydrogen generation will benefit from the realization of more active but less expensive cocatalysts compared with noble metal counterparts. Herein we developed a universal vapor deposition method that selectively uses the thermal decomposition products of sodium hypophosphite as a phosphorus source for the fabrication of inevensive and highly efficient metal phosphate (MPi) modified CdS nanorods. We find that the modification with a bimetal phosphate (i.e., S wt % NiCoPi) leads to an activity enhancement by a factor of approximately 52 in boosting visible-light-driven hydrogen evolution relative to the pristine CdS nanorods. The photocatalyst exhibits a high hydrogen generation rate of 13.44 mmol.g(-1).h(-1), which is much higher than that of its single metal counterparts (NiPi, 8.70 mmol.g(-1).h(-1); CoPi, 5.79 mmol.g(-1).h(-1)) and 1 wt % Pt modified CdS (1.33 mmol.g(-1).h(-1)). Its apparent quantum efficiency reaches 23.5% at 420 nm. Furthermore, it also shows remarkable photostability for eight consecutive cycles of photocatalytic activity tests with total reaction time of 24 h. The excellent photocatalytic performance of the photocatalyst is believed to be associated with the in situ formed (NiCoP)-Co-I and NiCo(III)Pi cocatalysts, which not only play an important role in photogenerated charge separation but also provide highly active catalytic reaction sites for the corresponding hydrogen evolution reaction and the sacrificial agent oxidation reaction.