Unique hole-accepting carbon-dots promoting selective carbon dioxide reduction nearly 100% to methanol by pure water

Yiou Wang, Xu Liu, Xiaoyu Han, Robert Godin, Jialu Chen, Wuzong Zhou, Chaoran Jiang, Jamie Thompson, Mustafa Bayazit, Stephen Shevlin, James Durrant, Zhengxiao Guo, Junwang Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

208 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Solar-driven CO2 reduction by abundant water to alcohols can supply sustainable liquid fuels and alleviate global warming. However, the sluggish water oxidation reaction has been hardly reported to be efficient and selective in CO2 conversion due to fast charge recombination. Here, using transient absorption spectroscopy, we demonstrate that microwave-synthesised carbon-dots (mCD) possess unique hole-accepting nature, prolonging the electron lifetime (t50%) of carbon nitride (CN) by six folds, favouring a six-electron product. mCD-decorated CN stably produces stoichiometric oxygen and methanol from water and CO2 with nearly 100% selectivity to methanol and internal quantum efficiency of 2.1% in the visible region, further confirmed by isotopic labelling. Such mCD rapidly extracts holes from CN and prevents the surface adsorption of methanol, favourably oxidising water over methanol and enhancing the selective CO2 reduction to alcohols. This work provides a unique strategy for efficient and highly selective CO2 reduction by water to high-value chemicals.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2531
Number of pages9
JournalNature Communications
Volume11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 May 2020

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