Reforming of Soluble Biomass and Plastic Derived Waste Using a Bias-Free Cu<inf>30</inf>Pd<inf>70</inf>

Bhattacharjee, S 
Andrei, V 
Pornrungroj, C 
Rahaman, M 
Pichler, CM 

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Abstract: The production of clean fuels and chemicals from waste feedstocks is an appealing approach towards creating a circular economy. However, waste photoreforming commonly employs particulate photocatalysts, which display low product yields, selectivity, and reusability. Here, a perovskite‐based photoelectrochemical (PEC) device is reported, which produces H2 fuel and simultaneously reforms waste substrates. A novel Cu30Pd70 oxidation catalyst is integrated in the PEC device to generate value‐added products using simulated solar light, achieving 60–90% product selectivity and ≈70–130 µmol cm−2 h−1 product formation rates, which corresponds to 102–104 times higher activity than conventional photoreforming systems. The single‐light absorber device offers versatility in terms of substrate scope, sustaining unassisted photocurrents of 4–9 mA cm−2 for plastic, biomass, and glycerol conversion, in either a two‐compartment or integrated “artificial leaf” configuration. These configurations enable an effective reforming of non‐transparent waste streams and facile device retrieval from the reaction mixture. Accordingly, the presented PEC platform provides a proof‐of‐concept alternative towards photoreforming, approaching more closely the performance and versatility required for commercially viable waste utilization.

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biomass, perovskite, plastic, reforming, solar fuels
Journal Title
Advanced Functional Materials
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Volume Title
Cambridge Circular Plastics Centre (EP/S025308/1)
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