/Carbon nitride thin films for Solar Fuel applications

Carbon nitride thin films for Solar Fuel applications

Master projects/internships - Genk | More than two weeks ago

Explore the opportunities of carbon nitride in photoelectrochemical green hydrogen generation 

Hydrogen production from water has attracted much attention due to the possibility of producing a clean fuel without CO2 emissions. However, there are multiple thermodynamic and kinetic challenges associated with water splitting. Solar energy is a clean and abundant energy source considered a promising solution for environmental and energy crises. Furthermore, solar energy can be directly utilized to split water. The key elements for achieving direct solar-to-hydrogen conversions are semiconducting materials and co-catalysts. When a semiconductor material is exposed to light, it generates electrons and holes that have the potential to conduct oxidation and reduction reactions. To further lower the energy barrier for these reactions and enhance selectivity for the desired product, co-catalysts can be employed.  Therefore, there is a significant interest in developing efficient photo absorbers and co-catalysts to improve energy conversion and catalytic activity. 
In this project, you will fabricate carbon nitride-based thin films as photocathodes for hydrogen evolution reaction. These layers will be doped with metal atoms to promote the photo(electro)chemical reaction. You will conduct various electrical, physical, and photo(electrochemical) characterizations and studies to evaluate their performance for solar fuel generation in different electrolytes. Finally, a photo-electrochemical cell with the carbon nitride photocathode and a proper anode will be assembled to demonstrate the solar water splitting at the lab scale. 

Carbon nitride thin films for Solar Fuel applications

The work will be conducted in the newly built laboratories at imec in EnergyVille, Genk, working in one of the world’s premier research centers for energy research. 
Skill required: background in semiconductors or photo/electrochemistry. Good knowledge of device physics, nanotechnology, and lab process. 

Type of Project: Combination of internship and thesis 

Master's degree: Master of Science; Master of Engineering Technology   

Supervisor: Bart Vermang (UHasselt) 

For more information or application, please contact Vishal Kakkarakunnel Jose (vishal.kakkarakunneljose@imec.be)

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