Since the 21st century, the development of science and technology is changing rapidly, and the living standard of human beings is gradually improving. At the same time, human beings are inevitably faced with problems such as energy crisis and environmental pollution. These problems have seriously threatened the health and life of human beings. Solar energy is the only renewable resource that can provide sufficient clean energy to replace fossil fuels as the new energy source. Therefore, the direct conversion of solar energy into clean energy is the most important scientific challenge today. The field of photocatalysis has been extensively developed to meet the challenge. The photocatalytic principle means that photocatalysts possess certain redox ability under light irradiation, so that they can achieve the purpose of pollutant purification, substance synthesis and transformation. The typical natural photocatalyst is the common chlorophyll, which promotes the synthesis of carbon dioxide and water in the air into oxygen and carbohydrates during photosynthesis in plants. Currently, many emerging photocatalysts are also being studied and synthesized. The fascinating topology, complex and diverse steric structures and the variable valence electrons and empty d orbitals (transition metal complex) possessed by the metal center ions of the coordination complexes give them great advantages as photocatalysts.
In the field of catalysis, photocatalysis is rapidly developing with its advantages. The advantages of photocatalysis are as follows:
1.Directly use the oxygen in the air as oxidant, the reaction conditions are mild.
2.Organic pollutants can be decomposed into inorganic small molecules such as carbon dioxide and water, and the purification effect is complete without any secondary pollution.
3.In theory, the lifetime of photocatalyst is long without replacement.
Coordination complexes have become a common photocatalyst by virtue of their unique properties. The use of coordination complexes as photocatalysts can perform many functions. Specific applications are as follows:
● Photocatalytic reduction of CO2
Photocatalytic reduction of CO2 to obtain hydrocarbon solar fuels is one of the promising strategies to solve energy crisis and complement carbon cycle. In recent years, scientists have been working on the synthesis of various novel metal coordination complex catalysts to reduce carbon dioxide to valuable products (e.g., hydrocarbons) using photocatalysis, thus alleviating the energy crisis to some extent.
● Photocatalytic hydrogen production
Photocatalytic hydrogen production is a process that converts solar energy into chemical energy by means of a suitable photocatalyst. Transition metal complex have unfilled orbitals that serve as centers for photogenerated electron and hole separation, which facilitate visible light absorption by photocatalysts. Nowadays, more and more transition metal complexes are used for photocatalytic hydrogen production.
● Photocatalytic degradation of organic pollutants
Photocatalytic degradation of organic pollutants is an eco-friendly technology. It is capable of degrading pollutants in wastewater of high complexity and concentration. In the field of photocatalyst research, structurally diverse coordination complexes can act as catalysts for photodegradation of organic pollutants, which brings new approaches to solve environmental pollution problems.
Alfa Chemistry offers coordination complexes for a wide range of photocatalytic applications, so please feel free to contact us if you have a need. We will also provide unique and customized services to our customers.