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Efficiency enhancements in Ag nanoparticles-SiO2-TiO2 sandwiched structure via plasmonic effect-enhanced light capturing

Jinxia Xu14, Xiangheng Xiao12*, Andrey L Stepanov3, Fen Ren12, Wei Wu1, Guangxu Cai1, Shaofeng Zhang1, Zhigao Dai1, Fei Mei4 and Changzhong Jiang12*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Physics and Key Laboratory of Artificial Micro- and Nano-structures of Ministry of Education, Wuhan University, Wuhan, 430072, People’s Republic of China

2 Center for Electron Microscopy and Hubei Nuclear Solid Physics Key Laboratory, Wuhan University, Wuhan, 430072, People’s Republic of China

3 Kazan Physical-Technical Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Kazan, 420029, Russia

4 School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Hubei University of Technology, Wuhan, 430068, People’s Republic of China

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2013, 8:73  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-8-73

Published: 12 February 2013

Abstract

TiO2-SiO2-Ag composites are fabricated by depositing TiO2 films on silica substrates embedded with Ag nanoparticles. Enhancement of light absorption of the nanostructural composites is observed. The light absorption enhancement of the synthesized structure in comparison to TiO2 originated from the near-field enhancement caused by the plasmonic effect of Ag nanoparticles, which can be demonstrated by the optical absorption spectra, Raman scattering investigation, and the increase of the photocatalytic activity. The embedded Ag nanoparticles are formed by ion implantation, which effectively prevents Ag to be oxidized through direct contact with TiO2. The suggested incorporation of plasmonic nanostructures shows a great potential application in a highly efficient photocatalyst and ultra-thin solar cell.

Keywords:
Plasmonic effect; Ion implantation; Ag nanoparticles; Photocatalysis