Congratulations to Dr Zahid Hussain, whose paper ‘Recent Advances in Metal–Organic Frameworks Derived Nanocomposites for Photocatalytic Applications in Energy and Environment’ has been recently published in Advanced Science.
Zahid explains the paper’s significance:
Solar energy is tremendously abundant and on average every second about 173,000 terawatts of solar energy continuously reach the Earth, of which UV and visible light account for around 45%. This enormous amount of energy can be utilized to realize photocatalytic chemical reactions for the production of hydrogen gas via water splitting as a sustainable fuel, mitigation of industrial and pharmaceutical pollutants and conversion of the greenhouse gas CO2 into value-added hydrocarbons cost-effectively to solve the energy and environmental problems.
The biggest challenge is to discover structurally stable and commercially affordable photocatalytic materials with the optimal properties to fulfill the tasks. Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) derived nanocomposites, containing metal compounds and porous carbons, offer a great symbiosis of morphological, physicochemical, and semiconducting properties which are difficult to achieve through the conventional catalytic materials. The in-situ formed combination of semiconducting compounds and conducting porous carbons can be stable and highly efficient photocatalytic materials for a variety of applications. The optimization of the synthetic strategies of MOF derived nanocomposites will enable better control over their fundamental properties, offering promising opportunities to the development of MOFs derived high-performance photocatalytic nanocomposite materials for renewable energy and environmental applications.
Zahid recently passed his viva and is now working as a post-doctoral researcher at Technical University of Munich (TUM).
Please find the abstract to Zahid’s paper below:
Solar energy is a key sustainable energy resource, and materials with optimal properties are essential for efficient solar energy-driven applications in photocatalysis. Metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) are excellent platforms to generate different nanocomposites comprising metals, oxides, chalcogenides, phosphides, or carbides embedded in porous carbon matrix. These MOF derived nanocomposites offer symbiosis of properties like high crystallinities, inherited morphologies, controllable dimensions, and tunable textural properties. Particularly, adjustable energy band positions achieved by in situ tailored self/external doping and controllable surface functionalities make these nanocomposites promising photocatalysts. Despite some progress in this field, fundamental questions remain to be addressed to further understand the relationship between the structures, properties, and photocatalytic performance of nanocomposites. In this review, different synthesis approaches including self-template and external-template methods to produce MOF derived nanocomposites with various dimensions (0D, 1D, 2D, or 3D), morphologies, chemical compositions, energy bandgaps, and surface functionalities are comprehensively summarized and analyzed. The state-of-the-art progress in the applications of MOF derived nanocomposites in photocatalytic water splitting for H2 generation, photodegradation of organic pollutants, and photocatalytic CO2 reduction are systemically reviewed. The relationships between the nanocomposite properties and their photocatalytic performance are highlighted, and the perspectives of MOF derived nanocomposites for photocatalytic applications are also discussed.