Alpha-Fe2O3 (α-Fe2O3) is cheap and abundant and has potential to be a highly efficient photocatalyst for water splitting. According to the report, there are a huge amount of disposable heating pads being created every year, and the pads are used one time then thrown away. We found that the main product of used heating pads is α-Fe2O3. Here, we collect and purify the α-Fe2O3 powder in the used heating pads using low power consumption processes. It is shown that the recycled heating pads can be used as a cost-effective photocatalyst for H2 energy and for decomposition of organic pollutants as well. Additionally, the plasmonic enhanced photocatalysis reaction of α-Fe2O3 is also investigated. It is found that H2 evolution rate can be enhanced 15% using α-Fe2O3 nanoparticles coated with a thin Au layer. The degradation of methylene blue can also enhance 12% compared to photocatalyst α-Fe2O3 nanoparticles coated without Au layer.
- solar energy