Hybridized Mechanical and Solar Energy-Driven Self-Powered Hydrogen Production

Xuelian Wei, Zhen Wen, Yina Liu, Ningning Zhai, Aimin Wei, Kun Feng, Guotao Yuan, Jun Zhong, Yinghuai Qiang*, Xuhui Sun

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


Photoelectrochemical hydrogen generation is a promising approach to address the environmental pollution and energy crisis. In this work, we present a hybridized mechanical and solar energy-driven self-powered hydrogen production system. A rotatory disc-shaped triboelectric nanogenerator was employed to harvest mechanical energy from water and functions as a sufficient external power source. WO3/BiVO4 heterojunction photoanode was synthesized in a PEC water-splitting cell to produce H2. After transformation and rectification, the peak current reaches 0.1 mA at the rotation speed of 60 rpm. In this case, the H2 evolution process only occurs with sunlight irradiation. When the rotation speed is over 130 rpm, the peak photocurrent and peak dark current have nearly equal value. Direct electrolysis of water is almost simultaneous with photoelectrocatalysis of water. It is worth noting that the hydrogen production rate increases to 5.45 and 7.27 μL min−1 without or with light illumination at 160 rpm. The corresponding energy conversion efficiency is calculated to be 2.43% and 2.59%, respectively. All the results demonstrate such a self-powered system can successfully achieve the PEC hydrogen generation, exhibiting promising possibility of energy conversion.[Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Article number88
JournalNano-Micro Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2020


  • Mechanical energy
  • Photoelectrochemical hydrogen generation
  • Solar energy
  • Triboelectric nanogenerator
  • WO/BiVO heterojunction

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