Visible Light Photocatalysis: Studying Dopant Uniformity in Rhodium Doped Strontium Titanate

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Photocatalytic nanoparticles can split water molecules using sunlight for renewable energy production. To increase the efficiency of these photocatalysts, rhodium atoms must be uniformly doped into the photocatalysts. In order to confirm whether or not the photocatalyst has been uniformly doped, scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) coupled with energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDS) has been used for the detection of rhodium atoms in different nanoparticles of the photocatalyst, strontium titanate. Findings from STEM-EDS show that rhodium atoms are present in some nanoparticles and undetectable in others, suggesting heterogeneous doping and inefficient water-splitting abilities. Further investigation involves correlating dopant uniformity with different synthesis techniques.

Student researcher

Blake Dorame

Materials science and engineering

Hometown: Scottsdale, Arizona, United States

Graduation date: Spring 2023