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Role of Femtosecond Pulsed Laser-Induced Atomic Redistribution in Bimetallic Au–Pd Nanorods on Optoelectronic and Catalytic Properties

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journal contribution
posted on 25.05.2021, 12:03 by Mohammadreza Nazemi, Sajanlal R. Panikkanvalappil, Chih-Kai Liao, Mahmoud A. Mahmoud, Mostafa A. El-Sayed
Utilizing solar energy for chemical transformations has attracted a growing interest in promoting the clean and modular chemical synthesis approach and addressing the limitations of conventional thermocatalytic systems. Under light irradiation, noble metal nanoparticles, particularly those characterized by localized surface plasmon resonance, commonly known as plasmonic nanoparticles, generate a strong electromagnetic field, excited hot carriers, and photothermal heating. Plasmonic nanoparticles enabling efficient absorption of light in the visible range have moderate catalytic activities. However, the catalytic performance of a plasmonic nanoparticle can be significantly enhanced by incorporating a highly catalytically active metal domain onto its surface. In this study, we demonstrate that femtosecond laser-induced atomic redistribution of metal domains in bimetallic Au–Pd nanorods (NRs) can enhance its photocurrent response by 2-fold compared to parent Au–Pd NRs. We induce structure changes on Au–Pd NRs by irradiating them with a femtosecond pulsed laser at 808 nm to precisely redistribute Pd atoms on AuNR surfaces, resulting in modified electronic and optical properties and, thereby, enhanced catalytic activity. We also investigate the trade-off between the effect of light absorption and catalytic activity by optimizing the structure and composition of bimetallic Au–Pd nanoparticles. This work provides insight into the design of hybrid plasmonic–catalytic nanostructures with well-tailored geometry, composition, and structure for solar-fuel-based applications.