3D microflowers CuS/Sn<inf>2</inf>S<inf>3</inf> heterostructure for highly efficient solar steam generation and water purification

Elsevier BV
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells, 2021, 232, pp. 111377-111377
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1-s2.0-S0927024821004190-main.pdfPublished version8.63 MB
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Solar-driven interfacial steam generation is a promising method to produce potable water using renewable energy and help solve global clean water scarcity problems. However, the design of photothermal materials (PTMs) with excellent light absorption that can localize heat at the air/water interface, and facilitate water vapor generation remains a key challenge for its practical implementation. In this work, we demonstrate the synthesis of heterostructure microflowers composed of vertically aligned CuS/Sn2S3 nanosheets (3D CSS-NS MF) using a single-step solvothermal method for solar steam generation application. The microflower structures and the abundant nanocavities between the vertically aligned nanosheets resulted in significant sunlight harvesting over the solar spectrum, excellent heat localization through trapping and re-absorbing the heat, and fast escape of water vapor. Under 1 sun (1 kW m-2) illumination, a high water evaporation rate of 1.42 kg m-2 h-1, corresponding to an efficiency of 82.93% was obtained. The 3D CSS-NS MF based solar evaporator exhibited remarkable salt ions rejection efficiency and good reusability over 10 cycles. Furthermore, efficient removal of organic dyes was observed in application geared towards wastewater treatment with a rejection ∼99.9%. Our work demonstrates the potential of using novel semiconductor-based nanocomposites as effective photothermal materials for high-performance solar steam generation in water desalination and wastewater treatment applications.
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