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ISSN : 1225-0562(Print)
ISSN : 2287-7258(Online)
Korean Journal of Materials Research Vol.29 No.1 pp.1-6

Photoelectrochemical Behavior of Cu2O and Its Passivation Effect

Hongkwan Yun, Soonhyun Hong, Dojin Kim and Chunjoong Kim
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Chungnam National University, Daejeon 34134, Republic of Korea
Corresponding author E-Mail : (C. Kim, Chungnam Nat’l Univ.)


Recent industrialization has led to a high demand for the use of fossil fuels. Therefore, the need for producing hydrogen and its utilization is essential for a sustainable society. For an eco-friendly future technology, photoelectrochemical water splitting using solar energy has proven promising amongst many other candidates. With this technique, semiconductors can be used as photocatalysts to generate electrons by light absorption, resulting in the reduction of hydrogen ions. The photocatalysts must be chemically stable, economically inexpensive and be able to utilize a wide range of light. From this perspective, cuprous oxide(Cu2O) is a promising p-type semiconductor because of its appropriate band gap. However, a major hindrance to the use of Cu2O is its instability at the potential in which hydrogen ion is reduced. In this study, gold is used as a bottom electrode during electrodeposition to obtain a preferential growth along the (111) plane of Cu2O while imperfections of the Cu2O thin films are removed. This study investigates the photoelectrochemical properties of Cu2O. However, severe photo-induced corrosion impedes the use of Cu2O as a photoelectrode. Two candidates, TiO2 and SnO2, are selected for the passivation layer on Cu2O by by considering the Pourbaix-diagram. TiO2 and SnO2 passivation layers are deposited by atomic layer deposition(ALD) and a sputtering process, respectively. The investigation of the photoelectrochemical properties confirmed that SnO2 is a good passivation layer for Cu2O.

산화구리의 광전기화학적 거동 특성

충남대학교 신소재공학과