Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations have been performed to investigate the structural and electronic properties of the ZnO(wurtzite)-ATiO2(anatase) heterojunction in the absence and presence of substitutional, interstitial nitrogen (N) doping and oxygen vacancies (OV). We report a detailed study of the interactions between the two nonpolar ZnO and TiO2 surfaces and on the role of N-doping and oxygen vacancies, which are decisive for improving the photocatalytic activity of the heterojunction. Our calculations show that substitutional N-doping is favored in the ATiO2 portion, whereas the interstitial one is favored in the ZnO region of the interface. Both substitutional and interstitial N-doped sites (i) induce gap states that act as deep electronic traps improving the charge separation and delaying electron-hole recombination, (ii) facilitate the OV formation causing a decrease in the formation energy (EFORM), and (iii) do not affect the band alignment when compared to the undoped analogue system. The presented results shed light on the N-doping effect on the electronic structure of the ZnO(100)-TiO2(101) heterojunction and how N-doping improves its photocatalytic properties.

DFT Investigation of Substitutional and Interstitial Nitrogen-Doping Effects on a ZnO(100)-TiO2(101) Heterojunction

Ritacco I.;Sacco O.;Caporaso L.
;
2022

Abstract

Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations have been performed to investigate the structural and electronic properties of the ZnO(wurtzite)-ATiO2(anatase) heterojunction in the absence and presence of substitutional, interstitial nitrogen (N) doping and oxygen vacancies (OV). We report a detailed study of the interactions between the two nonpolar ZnO and TiO2 surfaces and on the role of N-doping and oxygen vacancies, which are decisive for improving the photocatalytic activity of the heterojunction. Our calculations show that substitutional N-doping is favored in the ATiO2 portion, whereas the interstitial one is favored in the ZnO region of the interface. Both substitutional and interstitial N-doped sites (i) induce gap states that act as deep electronic traps improving the charge separation and delaying electron-hole recombination, (ii) facilitate the OV formation causing a decrease in the formation energy (EFORM), and (iii) do not affect the band alignment when compared to the undoped analogue system. The presented results shed light on the N-doping effect on the electronic structure of the ZnO(100)-TiO2(101) heterojunction and how N-doping improves its photocatalytic properties.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11386/4803351
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 1
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 1
social impact