Noble metal modification has been demonstrated to be an efficient strategy to improve the photocatalytic performance of TaON photocatalysts. However, the previous studies about the noble metal modification are only restricted to the surface loading of metallic noble metal, investigations have seldom been focused on the simultaneously deposited and doped X/TaXzON (X = Pt, Ru) photocatalyst. In this work, single-phase Ta1-zXzO 1+zN1-z (X = Pt, Ru, 0 < Z ≤ 0.001) (as TaX zON) and heterostructured Xδ/Ta 1-z+δXz-δO1+z-δN 1-z+δ (X = Pt, Ru, 0.001 < Z ≤ 0.016) (as X δ/TaXz-δON) photocatalysts were synthesized by a sol-gel method in combination with a post-treatment nitridation process. The chemical states and form of noble metals in the as-prepared TaXzON and Xδ/TaXz-δON samples were characterized by XPS and HRTEM. In a few noble metal doping sol-gel processes, the visible-light photocatalytic activity of single-phase TaPtzON (Z = 0.0005) and TaRuzON (Z = 0.0005) showed a rate of H2 production at 51 and 90 μmol h-1 higher than that of the pristine TaON. With the increase of noble metal content, the photocatalytic activity of heterostructured Ptδ/TaPtz-δON (Z = 0.004) and Ru δ/TaRuz-δON (Z = 0.004) exhibited a rate of H2 evolution at 198 and 258 μmol h-1 which was about 28 and 6 times than the TaON loaded noble metal by photodeposition, respectively. Moreover, further photodeposition of noble metal was performed at the heterostructured materials. It was found that the highest photocatalytic activity of the catalyst was achieved based on Xδ/TaX z-δON (X = Pt, Ru, Z = 0.002). This enhanced photocatalytic activity is mainly ascribed not only to the doping effect leading to formation of an isolated energy level contributing to more visible-light absorption but also to the well-distributed noble metal on the surface of the photocatalysts with strong interaction with TaON resulting in photoinduced interfacial charge transfer. This work may provide some insight into the smart design of novel and high-efficiency photocatalytic materials.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Materials Science(all)