Fully solar-powered photoelectrochemical conversion for simultaneous energy storage and chemical sensing

Yongcheng Wang, Jing Tang, Zheng Peng, Yuhang Wang, Dingsi Jia, Biao Kong, Ahmed A. Elzatahry, Dongyuan Zhao, Gengfeng Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


We report the development of a multifunctional, solar-powered photoelectrochemical (PEC)–pseudocapacitive–sensing material system for simultaneous solar energy conversion, electrochemical energy storage, and chemical detection. The TiO2 nanowire/NiO nanoflakes and the Si nanowire/Pt nanoparticle composites are used as photoanodes and photocathodes, respectively. A stable open-circuit voltage of ∼0.45 V and a high pseudocapacitance of up to ∼455 F g–1 are obtained, which also exhibit a repeating charging–discharging capability. The PEC–pseudocapacitive device is fully solar powered, without the need of any external power supply. Moreover, this TiO2 nanowire/NiO nanoflake composite photoanode exhibits excellent glucose sensitivity and selectivity. Under the sun light illumination, the PEC photocurrent shows a sensitive increase upon different glucose additions. Meanwhile in the dark, the open-circuit voltage of the charged pseudocapacitor also exhibits a corresponding signal over glucose analyte, thus serving as a full solar-powered energy conversion–storage–utilization system.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3668-3673
Number of pages6
JournalNano Letters
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2014
Externally publishedYes

Cite this