Expertise

Photocatalytic Water Splitting and Water purification:

Carbon nitride polymers with high stability, smaller band gap and appropriate band positions gaining great interest in majority of researchers now-a-days for harvesting large abundant and renewable sunlight. The availability of various precursors and its easy synthesis protocol makes it a prime choice in the field of visible light active photocatalysts over the previously available catalysts. Because of its appropriate CBM (Conduction band minima), it has been utilized as a photocatalyst for water splitting to generate hydrogen. Due to its lower positive VBM (Valence band maxima), it is strongly recommended as a heterogeneous photocatalyst for selective synthesis of fine chemicals. Several heterostructurenanocomposites are of major interest for enhancement in the generation of either hydrogen or oxygen or both and in fine chemical production. Due to it’s rich electron density and high porosity, it can bind metals easily and been utilised removal of toxic metals as well as removal/ decomposition of organic pollutants.

Photocatalytic biomass conversion into value-added fine chemicals:

The concept to utilize solar light energy at room temperature and ambient conditions via photocatalysis to selectively convert lignocellulosic biomass to important chemicals is gaining momentum and aggressively to be pursued. Synthesis of valuable products including some of the so-called sugar-derived platform molecules (e.g., succinic, 2,5-furandicarboxylic, 3-hydroxypropionic, gluconic, glucaric and levulinic acids) through photocatalysis is a highly innovative approach that can bring several benefits from energy and environmental viewpoints. As such, photocatalytic selective processes are able to keep selectivities to products at reasonable levels at increasing conversions in the systems, as opposed to conventional thermally activated heterogeneous catalysis. Simultaneous production of hydrogen along with value-added biofuels is the ultimate process which is of interest in our group.

Covalent Organic frameworks (COFs):

Crystalline COFs, Covalent Triazine/ Heptazine Frameworks, Conjugated Micro-/Meso-porous Polymers (CMPs) and other porous organic polymers especially constructed by Heptazines are of great interest. COFs with heteroatom as knot are useful for eg., in sorption of H2, CO2, CH4 and other harmful gases from the environment.Further conversion of gases, for eg., llike CO2 into useful chemicalsd such as polycarbonates through heterogeneous catalysis have huge prospects. COFs with heteroatom networks are multi-site active materials with varying conjugation degree and visible light response with favourable band gap and band position which will be employed inphotocatalytic conversions and as sensingplatforms for humidity, VOCs and bio-sensing.

Organic-Photovoltaics (OPV):

The concept to utilize solar light energy at room temperature and ambient conditions via photocatalysis to selectively convert lignocellulosic biomass to important chemicals is gaining momentum and aggressively to be pursued. Synthesis of valuable products including some of the so-called sugar-derived platform molecules (e.g., succinic, 2,5-furandicarboxylic, 3-hydroxypropionic, gluconic, glucaric and levulinic acids) through photocatalysis is a highly innovative approach that can bring several benefits from energy and environmental viewpoints. As such, photocatalytic selective processes are able to keep selectivities to products at reasonable levels at increasing conversions in the systems, as opposed to conventional thermally activated heterogeneous catalysis. Simultaneous production of hydrogen along with value-added biofuels is the ultimate process which is of interest in our group.

Environmental screening of toxic chemicals and Sensing Applications:

Recent research focus is in the development of materials for chemiresistive gas-sensing and humidity-sensing applications. Current sensors in the market are dealing with issues like selectivity,stability and response-recovery times which are an important parameter for practicality for any sensor. So there is urgent need to address some other materials that can fill the gap between the performance and practicality of the sensor in environment and health monitoring applications. Due to it’s different surface chemistry, we developed porous Carbon nitride based nanocomposites, COFs and CMPs for humidity and VOC sensing applications for the first time. Further we are exploring on the above materials by having different functional groups for more selective sensing applications.

Fuel cells:

Porous hetero atom doped carbons/ carbon nitrides from cost-effective sources and renewables to develop electrodes for PEMFC are the main interests of our group. In addition, to have material with superior properties and performance, graphene/CNT-carbon nitride composites are the current materials of focus.