Zn-Doped Fe2TiO5Pseudobrookite-Based Photoanodes Grown by Aerosol-Assisted Chemical Vapor Deposition

Miriam Regue, Ibbi Y. Ahmet, Prince Saurabh Bassi, Andrew L. Johnson, Sebastian Fiechter, Roel Van De Krol, Fatwa F. Abdi, Salvador Eslava

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Water splitting in photoelectrochemical cells is a promising technology to produce solar hydrogen. Fe2TiO5 pseudobrookite with a bandgap of around 2 eV absorbs the predominant visible range of the solar spectrum and is emerging as a promising photoanode for such cells. Herein, we present Fe2TiO5 pseudobrookite-based films prepared by aerosol-assisted chemical vapor deposition and the positive impact of Zn2+ doping in their formation and performance. Undoped and Zn2+-doped Fe2TiO5 pseudobrookite-based photoanodes were characterized by techniques such as XRD, XPS, UPS, and Mott-Schottky analysis. We find that the Zn2+ ions are preferentially incorporated in the pseudobrookite phase over a present secondary hematite (α-Fe2O3) phase. The Zn2+ doping modifies the electronic properties of the films, increases their charge carrier concentration, and upshifts their Fermi level, significantly improving their anodic photocurrent response by a factor of three. In addition, charge transfer efficiency calculations reveal that Zn2+ doping improves both charge separation and injection efficiencies, overall demonstrating a promising approach for the design of enhanced pseudobrookite-based photoanodes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12066-12077
Number of pages12
JournalACS Applied Energy Materials
Issue number12
Early online date20 Nov 2020
Publication statusPublished - 28 Dec 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to acknowledge both EPSRC for funding the Centre for Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemical Technologies at the University of Bath (EP/L016354/1) and the Material and Chemical Characterisation facility (MC2) at the University of Bath. S.E. would like to acknowledge the financial support from an EPSRC Fellowship (EP/S030727/1).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 American Chemical Society.


  • aerosol-assisted chemical vapor deposition
  • FeTiO
  • photoanode
  • photoelectrochemical
  • Zn doping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Electrochemistry
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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