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Nano Research

Article Title

Tea stain-inspired solar energy harvesting polyphenolic nanocoatings with tunable absorption spectra

Authors

Lu Yang, College of Polymer Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China
Yuan Zou, College of Polymer Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China
Wei Xia, College of Polymer Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China
Haotian Li, College of Polymer Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China
Xinyu He, College of Polymer Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China
Yi Zhou, College of Polymer Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China
Xianhu Liu, National Engineering Research Center for Advanced Polymer Processing Technology, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou 450002, China
Chaoqun Zhang, Key Laboratory for Biobased Materials and Energy of Ministry of Education, College of Materials and Energy, South China Agricultural University, 483 Wushan Road, Guangzhou 510642, China;Guangdong Laboratory for Lingnan Modern Agricultural Science and Technology, 483 Wushan Road, Guangzhou 510642, China
Yiwen Li, College of Polymer Science and Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Materials Engineering, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610065, China

Keywords

metal-polyphenolic nanocoating, polymerization, light absorption, photothermal, solar desalination

Abstract

Discovery and development of new sustainable photothermal materials with tunable light absorption spectra play a key role in solar energy harvesting and conversion. One possible solution to this quest is to check nature as a source of matters or inspiration. Inspired by the formation of tea stains, a unique class of dark stain materials generated by the interfacial reaction between tea polyphenols and metal substance, we reported the facile preparation and screening of a series of photothermal nanocoating layers via the metal ion (i.e. Cu(II),Fe(III), Ni(II), Zn(II)) promoted in situ polymerization of typical phenolic moieties of tea polyphenols (i.e., catechol and pyrogallol). It was found that those resulting metal-polyphenolic nanocoatings showed various promising features, such as high blackness and strong adhesion, excellent and tunable light absorption properties, good hydrophilicity and long-term stability. We further fabricated the photothermal composite devices by in situ formation of metal-polyphenolic nanocoatings on pristine silks for solar desalination, which demonstrated promising durable evaporation behaviors with excellent evaporation rates and steam generation efficiencies. We believe that this work could provide more opportunities towards new types of bio-inspired and sustainable photothermal nanomaterials for solar energy harvesting applications such as water desalination.

Publisher

Tsinghua University Press

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