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International Journal of Photoenergy
Volume 2014, Article ID 380421, 6 pages
Research Article

Band-Gap Engineering of NaNbO3 for Photocatalytic H2 Evolution with Visible Light

Peng Li,1 Hideki Abe,1,2,3 and Jinhua Ye1,2,4

1Catalytic Materials Group, Environmental Remediation Materials Unit, National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS), 1-1 Namiki, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-0044, Japan
2TU-NIMS Joint Research Center, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Tianjin University, 92 Weijin Road, Nankai District, Tianjin 300072, China
3PRESTO, Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), 4-1-8 Honcho Kawaguchi, Saitama 332-0012, Japan
4International Center for Materials Nanoarchitectonics (WPI-MANA), National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS), 1-1 Namiki, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-0044, Japan

Received 4 July 2014; Accepted 3 August 2014; Published 26 August 2014

Academic Editor: Wenjun Luo

Copyright © 2014 Peng Li et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A new visible light response photocatalyst has been developed for H2 evolution from methanol solution by elemental doping. With lanthanum and cobalt dopants, the photoabsorption edge of NaNbO3 was effectively shifted to the visible light region. It is also found that the photoabsorption edge is effectively controlled by the dopant concentration. Under visible light irradiation, H2 was successfully generated over the doped NaNbO3 samples and a rate of 12 μmol·h−1 was achieved over (LaCo)0.03(NaNb)0.97O3. Densityfunctional theory calculations show that Co-induced impurity states are formed in the band gap of NaNbO3 and this is considered to be the origin of visible-light absorption upon doping with La and Co.