Modulating the external facets of functional nanocrystals enabled by two-dimensional oxide crystal templates

H. Yuan, Kai Han, David Dubbink, Guido Mul, Johan E. ten Elshof

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
159 Downloads (Pure)


The nature of the external crystal facets is critical to control the (photo)catalytic properties. Two-dimensional materials can expose only one type of crystal facet among zero-dimensional (0D), one-dimensional (1D), and two-dimensional (2D) materials. Controllable tuning of the nature of the external crystal facets of 2D materials is highly desirable but very challenging. Here, we show that 2D particles with the desirable crystal facet for highperformance photocatalytic H2 generation can be obtained by using 2D metal oxide materials (i.e., nanosheets of Ca2Nb3O10 and Ti0.87O2) as templates taking consideration of the crystal configuration of 2D oxide and target compounds. We demonstrate that anatase TiO2 crystals grown on different nanosheet templates exhibit variations in photocatalytic hydrogen production rates from aqueous phase methanol solutions (6.7%), which can be attributed to the nature of the main crystal facet exposed. In view of the large number of 2D materials that have already been synthesized, this work offers a key to design and synthesize nanoparticles with the desirable specific external crystal facet for (photo)catalysis application.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6858-6863
Number of pages6
JournalACS catalysis
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 6 Oct 2017


  • 2D oxides
  • Nanosheet
  • Photocatalytic hydrogen evolution
  • Preferential crystal facet
  • Template synthesis


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