NH3-Assisted Flux Growth of Cube-like BaTaO2N Submicron Crystals in a Completely Ionized Nonaqueous High-Temperature Solution and Their Water Splitting Activity

Mirabbos Hojamberdiev, Kunio Yubuta, Junie Jhon M. Vequizo, Akira Yamakata, Shuji Oishi, Kazunari Domen, Katsuya Teshima

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63 Citations (Scopus)


As the 600 nm-class photocatalyst, BaTaO2N is one of the promising candidates of the perovskite-type oxynitride family for photocatalytic water splitting under visible light. The oxynitrides are routinely synthesized by nitriding corresponding oxide precursors under a high-temperature NH3 atmosphere, causing an increase in the defect density and a decrease in photocatalytic activity. To improve the photocatalytic activity by reducing the defect density and improving the crystallinity, we here demonstrate an NH3-assisted KCl flux growth approach for the direct synthesis of BaTaO2N crystals. The effects of various fluxes, solute concentration, and reaction time and temperature on the phase evolution and morphology transformation of the BaTaO2N crystals were systematically investigated. By changing the solute concentration from 10 to 50 mol %, it was found that phase-pure BaTaO2N crystals could only be grown with the solute concentrations of ≥10 mol % using the KCl flux, and the solute concentration of 10 mol % was solely favorable to directly grow cube-like BaTaO2N crystals with an average size of about 125 nm and exposed {100} and {110} faces at 950 C for 10 h. The time- and temperature-dependent experiments were also performed to postulate the direct growth mechanisms of cube-like BaTaO2N submicron crystals. The BaTaO2N crystals modified with Pt and CoOx nanoparticles showed a reasonable H2 and O2 evolution, respectively, due to a lower defect density and higher crystallinity achieved by an NH3-assisted KCl flux method. (Figure Presented).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4663-4671
Number of pages9
JournalCrystal Growth and Design
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2 2015
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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