Cooperative Coupling of Oxidative Organic Synthesis and Hydrogen Production over Semiconductor-Based Photocatalysts

Merging hydrogen (H2) evolution with oxidative organic synthesis in a semiconductor-mediated photoredox reaction is extremely attractive because the clean H2 fuel and high-value chemicals can be coproduced under mild conditions using light as the sole energy input. Following this dual-functional photocatalytic strategy, a dreamlike reaction pathway for constructing C-C/C-X (X = C, N, O, S) bonds from abundant and readily available X-H bond-containing compounds with concomitant release of H2 can be readily fulfilled without the need of external chemical reagents, thus offering a green and fascinating organic synthetic strategy. In this review, we begin by presenting a concise overview on the general background of traditional photocatalytic H2 production and then focus on the fundamental principles of cooperative photoredox coupling of selective organic synthesis and H2 production by simultaneous utilization of photoexcited electrons and holes over semiconductor-based catalysts to meet the economic and sustainability goal.

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