Nano Research

Article Title

Design and roles of RGO-wrapping in charge transfer and surface passivation in photoelectrochemical enhancement of cascade-band photoanode


photoelectrochemical, RGO, charge transfer, surface passivation, CdSe, ZnO


ABSTRACT Fast charge transfer and anti-photocorrosion are two crucial factors for developing efficient, durable photoanodes for photoelectrochemical (PEC) cells. Reduced graphene oxide (RGO) is a promising photoanode element that can provide both of these. In this study, we elucidated the roles of RGO in the charge transfer and surface passivation of photoanodes by the precise design of a RGO-wrapped photoanode and examination of its PEC properties. Arrays of hetero-nanorods (HNRs) with three different designs were fabricated as photoanodes using RGO, CdSe nanoparticles (NPs), and ZnO nanorods (NRs) as building blocks. CdSe@ZnO HNRs were prepared by decorating ZnO NRs with CdSe NPs. Finite-element analysis and experimental studies demonstrated that in the CdSe@ZnO HNRs, if only the ZnO NRs were wrapped by RGO, the conductivity between CdSe and ZnO was enhanced by RGO to shuttle charges. If RGO only surrounded the outside of the CdSe@ZnO HNRs, the corrosion was slowed owing to the passivation effect of RGO, which increased the electron lifetime of the photoanode. If both CdSe and ZnO were fully wrapped by RGO, the advantages of the two aforementioned cases were both obtained. RGO-wrapped CdSe@ZnO HNRs with position-controlled designs are promising photoanode materials with a high PEC efficiency, and the developed synthesis process can be applied to explore the design and fabrication of next-generation photoanodes using RGO as a building block.

Graphical Abstract


Tsinghua University Press