Plasmon aided (BiVO4)x–(TiO2)1−x ternary nanocomposites for efficient solar water splitting

Shahid Ali, Ibrahim Khan, Safyan A. Khan, Manzar Sohail, Zain H. Yamani, Mohamed A. Morsy, Muhammad Qamaruddin

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


The work presents the results of newly synthesized facile plasmon aided nanocomposite series, ((BiVO4)x–(TiO2)1−x, x = 0.01, 0.05, 0.10 and 0.20) for the efficient solar-driven water splitting application. Owing prominent optoelectrical properties of B10 = (BiVO4)0.10–(TiO2)0.90 composite, Ag nanoparticles (NPs) were impregnated to study the effect of surface plasmon resonance (SPR) phenomenon. A significant shift of 0.16° and 0.4 eV is recorded in X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) profiles, respectively which confirmed the formation of Ag/B10 nanocomposite. The micrograph and elemental mapping of Ag/B10 composite confirm a homogenous distribution of its components. A notable decrease in the band gap from 3.26 eV (TiO2) to 2.44 eV (Ag/B10) is estimated by Kubelka − Munk equation. Furthermore, the substantial decrease in photoluminescence (PL) intensity of Ag/B10 (∼7 folds of TiO2) corroborates its higher light absorption capacity and lower photo-excitons recombination. The photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting studies carried out via linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) demonstrate that all the photoanodes were active at ∼0.6 V. Whereas, chronoamperometry (I – t) results depicted the photocurrent density reached to the maximum value of ∼230 µA cm−2 at 0.6 V for Ag/B10 under chopped solar irradiations. Moreover, B10 and Ag/B10 nanostructures affirm prolonged photocurrent (I – t) stability until 3600 s. We report here for the first time, Ag/B10 ternary composite shows enhanced photocurrent density due to its narrow band gap, lower photo-excitons recombination and SPR effect as compared to pristine TiO2, BiVO4 and their binary composites.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)770-780
Number of pages11
JournalSolar Energy
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Photoanodes
  • Plasmon
  • Solar light
  • Solvothermal
  • Water splitting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Materials Science


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