Dark titania (TiOx) have been widely used for solar energy harvesting and conversion applications due to its excellent light absorbing performance throughout the ultraviolet to near infrared wavelength band, low cost, and non-toxic nature. However, the synthesis methods of dark TiOx are usually complicated and time-consuming. Here we report a facile and rapid method to fabricate dark amorphous TiOx (am-TiOx) hollow nanotube arrays on nanoporous anodic alumina oxide (AAO) templates using atomic layer deposition. Systematic investigation was performed to demonstrate that Ti3+ and O- species in the am-TiOx ultra-thin films, as well as the spatial distribution of these am-TiOx ultra-thin films on the vertical side walls of AAO templates are two major mechanisms of the black color. Importantly, the film deposition took ~18 min only to produce the optimized ~4-nm-thick am-TiOx film. Representative applications were demonstrated using photocatalytic reduction of silver nitrate and photothermal solar vapor generation, revealing the potential of these ultra-thin dark am-TiOx/AAO structures for full spectrum solar energy harvesting and conversion.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Materials Science(all)
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering