Photoelectrochemical reforming of plastic waste offers an environmentally-benign and sustainable route for hydrogen generation. Nonetheless, little attention was paid to develop electrocatalysts that can efficiently and selectively catalyze oxidative transformation of valueless plastic wastes into valued chemicals. Herein, we report on facile electrosynthesis of nickel-phosphorus nanospheres (nanoNi-P), and their versatility in catalyzing hydrogen generation, water oxidation, and reforming of polyethylene terephthalate (PET). Notably, composite of nanoNi-P with carbon nanotubes (CNT/nanoNi-P) requires −180 mV overpotential to drive hydrogen generation at -100 mA cm−2. Besides, CV-activated nanoNi-P (nanoNi-P(CV)) was shown to be capable of reforming PET into formate with high selectivity (Faradic efficiency= ∼100 %). Efficient and selective generation of hydrogen and formate from PET reforming is realized utilizing an Earth-abundant photoelectrochemical platform based on nanoNi-P(CV)-modified TiO2 nanorods photoanode and CNT/nanoNi-P cathode. This work paves a path for developing artificial leaf for simultaneous environmental mitigation and photosynthesis of renewable fuels and valued chemicals.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Science(all)
- Process Chemistry and Technology