Photocatalysts Based on Cobalt-Chelating Conjugated Polymers for Hydrogen Evolution from Water

Lianwei Li, Ryan G. Hadt, Shiyu Yao, Wai Yip Lo, Zhengxu Cai, Qinghe Wu, Bill Pandit, Lin X. Chen*, Luping Yu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Developing photocatalytic systems for water splitting to generate oxygen and hydrogen is one of the biggest chemical challenges in solar energy utilization. In this work, we report the first example of heterogeneous photocatalysts for hydrogen evolution based on in-chain cobalt-chelating conjugated polymers. Two conjugated polymers chelated with earth-abundant cobalt ions were synthesized and found to evolve hydrogen photocatalytically from water. These polymers are designed to combine functions of the conjugated backbone as a light-harvesting antenna and electron-transfer conduit with the in-chain bipyridyl-chelated transition metal centers as catalytic active sites. In addition, these polymers are soluble in organic solvents, enabling effective interactions with the substrates as well as detailed characterization. We also found a polymer-dependent optimal cobalt chelating concentration at which the highest photocatalytic hydrogen production (PHP) activity can be achieved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5394-5399
Number of pages6
JournalChemistry of Materials
Issue number15
StatePublished - Aug 9 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Materials Chemistry


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