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Proceedings Paper

Photoelectrochemical performance of W-doped BiVO4 thin-films deposited by spray pyrolysis
Author(s): Stephen K. Holland; Melissa R. Dutter; David J. Lawrence; Barbara A Reisner; Thomas C. DeVore
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Paper Abstract

The effect of tungsten doping and hydrogen annealing treatments on the photoelectrochemical (PEC) performance of bismuth vanadate (BiVO4) photoanodes for solar water splitting was studied. Thin films of BiVO4 were deposited on ITO-coated glass slides by ultrasonic spray pyrolysis of an aqueous solution containing bismuth nitrate and vanadium oxysulfate. Tungsten doping was achieved by adding either silicotungstic acid (STA) or ammonium metatungstate (AMT) in the aqueous precursor. The 1.7 μm – 2.2 μm thick films exhibited a highly porous microstructure. Undoped films that were reduced at 375 ºC in 3% H2 exhibited the largest photocurrent densities under 0.1 W cm-2 AM1.5 illumination. This performance enhancement was believed to be due to the formation of oxygen vacancies, which are shallow electron donors, in the films. Films doped with 1% or 5% tungsten from either STA or AMT exhibited reduced photoelectrochemical performance and greater sample-to-sample performance variations. Powder X-ray diffraction data of the undoped films indicated that they were comprised primarily of the monoclinic scheelite phase while unidentified phases were also present. Scanning electron microscopy showed slightly different morphology characteristics for the Wdoped films. It is surmised that the addition of W in the deposition process promoted the morphology differences and the formation of different phases, thus reducing the PEC performance of the photoanode samples. Significant PEC performance variability was also observed among films deposited using the described process.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 September 2013
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 8822, Solar Hydrogen and Nanotechnology VIII, 88220F (16 September 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2025300
Show Author Affiliations
Stephen K. Holland, James Madison Univ. (United States)
Melissa R. Dutter, James Madison University (United States)
James Madison Univ (United States)
David J. Lawrence, James Madison Univ. (United States)
Barbara A Reisner, James Madison University (United States)
Thomas C. DeVore, James Madison Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8822:
Solar Hydrogen and Nanotechnology VIII
Yosuke Kanai; David Prendergast, Editor(s)

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