Qingxuan Tang, Yifei Han, Lingxuan Chen, Qiaoyan Qi, Junlai Yu, Shang-Bo Yu, Bo Yang, Hao-Yang Wang, Jiangshan Zhang, Song-Hai Xie, Feng Tian, Zhenhua Xie, Hanqiu Jiang, Yubin Ke, Guanyu Yang, Zhan-Ting Li, Jia Tian

Bioinspired Self‐Assembly of Metalloporphyrins and Polyelectrolytes into Hierarchical Supramolecular Nanostructures for Enhanced Photocatalytic H2 Production in Water

  • General Medicine

Abstract: Polypeptides, as natural polyelectrolytes, are assembled into tailored proteins to integrate chromophores and catalytic sites for photosynthesis. Mimicking nature to create the water‐soluble nanoassemblies from synthetic polyelectrolytes and photocatalytic molecular species for artificial photosynthesis is still rare. Here, we report the enhancement of the full‐spectrum solar light‐driven H2 production within a supramolecular system built by the co‐assembly of anionic metalloporphyrins with cationic polyelectrolytes in water. This supramolecular photocatalytic system achieves a H2 production rate of 793 and 685 μmol h‐1 g‐1 over 24 h with a combination of Mg or Zn porphyrin as photosensitizers and Cu porphyrin as catalyst, which is more than 23 times higher than that of free molecular controls. With a photosensitizer to catalyst ratio of 10000:1, the highest H2 production rate of > 51,700 μmol h‐1 g‐1 with a turnover number (TON) of > 1,290 per molecular catalyst was achieved over 24 h irradiation. The hierarchical self‐assembly not only enhances photostability via forming ordered stackings of the metalloporphyrins but also facilitates both energy and electron transfer from antenna molecules to catalysts, and therefore promote the photocatalysis. This research provides structural and mechanistic insights of self‐assembly enhanced photostability and catalytic performance of supramolecular photocatalytic systems.

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