Characteristics of NixFe1–xOy electrocatalyst on hematite as photoanode for solar hydrogen production

Chih Ping Yen, Yan Jin Li, Jyhpyng Wang, Szu Yuan Chen, Chung Jen Tseng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The use of hematite as the photoanode for photoelectrochemical hydrogen production by solar energy has been actively studied due to its abundance, stability, and adequate optical properties. Deposition of an electrocatalyst overlayer on the hematite may increase kinetics and lower the onset potential for water splitting. NixFe1-xOy is one of the most effective electrocatalysts reported for this purpose. However, the condition and results of the previous reports vary significantly, and a comprehensive model for NixFe1-xOy/hematite is lacking. Here, we report a simple and novel chemical bath deposition method for depositing low-onset-potential NixFe1-xOy electrocatalyst on hematite. With a Ni percentage of 80% and an immersion time of 2 min, the as-prepared NixFe1-xOy overlayer raised the photovoltage from 0.2 V to 0.7 V, leading to a cathodic shift of the onset potential by 400mV, while maintaining the same level of current density. The dependence of the electrochemical and photoelectrochemical characteristics of the photoanode on the condition of the electrocatalyst was studied systematically and explained based on energy level diagrams and kinetics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number350
Issue number11
StatePublished - 20 Nov 2017


  • Chemical bath deposition
  • Electrocatalyst
  • Pulsed laser deposition
  • Solar water splitting


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