Conducting-polymer nanocomposites as synergistic supports that accelerate electro-catalysis: PEDOT/Nano Co3 O4/rGO as a photo catalyst of oxygen production from water

Publication Name

Journal of Composites Science


This work describes how conducting polymer nanocomposites can be employed as synergistic supports that significantly accelerate the rate of electro-catalysis. The nanocomposite PEDOT/nano-Co3 O4 /rGO is discussed as an example in this respect, which is specific for photo electro-catalytic oxygen (O2) generation from water using light (PEDOT = poly (3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene); rGO = reduced graphene oxide). We show that the conducting polymer PEDOT and the conductive additive rGO may be used to notably amplify the rate of O2-generation from water by the nano catalyst, Co3 O4. A composite film containing the precise molar ratio 7.18 (C; PEDOT):1 (Co):5.18 (C; rGO) exhibited high photocatalytic activity (pH 12) for the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) at 0.80 V (vs. Ag/AgCl), with a current density of 1000 ± 50 µA/cm2 (including a photocurrent of 500 µA/cm2), achieved after >42 h of operation under illumination with a light of intensity 0.25 sun. By comparison, the best industrial catalyst, Pt, yielded a much lower 150 µA/cm2 under the same conditions. Oxygen gas was the sole product of the reaction.

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Funding Sponsor

Australian National Fabrication Facility



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