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Nano Lett. 2009 Jan;9(1):410-5. doi: 10.1021/nl8032763.

High density n-Si/n-TiO2 core/shell nanowire arrays with enhanced photoactivity.

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Department of Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.


There are currently great needs to develop low-cost inorganic materials that can efficiently perform solar water splitting as photoelectrolysis of water into hydrogen and oxygen has significant potential to provide clean energy. We investigate the Si/TiO(2) nanowire heterostructures to determine their potential for the photooxidation of water. We observed that highly dense Si/TiO(2) core/shell nanowire arrays enhanced the photocurrent by 2.5 times compared to planar Si/TiO(2) structure due to their low reflectance and high surface area. We also showed that n-Si/n-TiO(2) nanowire arrays exhibited a larger photocurrent and open circuit voltage than p-Si/n-TiO(2) nanowires due to a barrier at the heterojunction.

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