Dr. Lai Chin Wei
Dr. Lai Chin Wei
University of Malaya, Malaysia
Title: Development of hybrid nanotubes film for solar photocatalytic water electrolysis
Nowadays, serious environmental pollution and energy crisis are the most threatening problems to human kinds. Therefore, executing research for generating clean energy has been the passion for scientists, which can provide us energy in sustainable manner. In this manner, custom designed water splitter pumps out clean hydrogen gas for better hydrogen power performance is one of the most innovative solutions to supply recyclable hydrogen energy. The design and development of WO3- loaded TiO2-based nanostructure film has gained significant interest in order to maximize specific surface area for harvesting more photons under solar energy. Based on our preliminary results, the incorporation of WO3 into lattice of TiO2 photocatalyst showed the promising performance. The coupling TiO2 with small band-gap of WO3 that possess different redox energy level for their valence band and conduction band, which provides another attractive approach to achieve more efficient charge separation under visible light. This condition will lead to additional electronic state in the band-gap, which in turn affect a change in the optical, electronic and functionality of TiO2. It was found that the synthesized WO3- loaded TiO2-based nanostructure film demonstrated a maximum photocurrent density of ≈ 2.5 mA/cm2 with photoconversion efficiency ≈ 6 %. The resultant photoelectrochemical performance was approximately two times higher than that of pure TiO2 nanotubes film under solar illumination. The mediator of W6+ species will assist in trapping the photo-induced electrons and minimize the recombination of charge carriers during water electrolysis process.
Ir. Dr. LAI CHIN WEI is a senior lecturer in the Nanotechnology & Catalysis Research Centre, University of Malaya. He received his Ph.D (2013) from School of Materials and Mineral Resources Engineering, University of Science Malaysia in nanomaterials and nanoscience. Lai’s main research interests are in the areas of chemically modified metal oxide photocatalysts and graphene materials, especially apply in environmental pollution management and solar energy technology. Lai has contributed immensely to the development and enhancement in science & technology in Malaysia, particularly in developing, optimizing and simplifying the technology lies in the synthesis of nanoparticles, metal oxide nano-architecture and carbon/graphene materials which are of high significance for green energy and environment applications. Lai’s works have been published in more than 100 refereed international top-tier journals with h-index of 16 and 100 international proceedings in materials science, physics, chemistry, and renewable energy researches. In all, Lai has reviewed more than 180 papers in the past few years, mainly for top international journals and conferences. Since 2013, his research has been funded by the Ministry of Higher Education of Malaysia, MOHE (FRGS, HIR-MOHE); Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation of Malaysia, MOSTI (E-Science fund, National Nanotechnology Development), and internal University funding (University of Malaya Research Grant). Being a reputable researcher, his enthusiasm and dedication towards research work, Lai has won several prestigious university, national and international awards, such as Gold medal winner-World Invention Awards London (British Invention Show) in 2011 and international Conference and Exposition on Invention of Institutions of Higher Learning (PECIPTA) in 2013. In addition, he successfully awarded “Sijil Perkhidmatan Cermerlang Universiti Malaya” for his excellent contribution and service in the year of 2013, 2014 and 2015. Through his work nanomaterials and catalysis field, Lai was awarded the University of Malaya Excellence Awards in the category of outstanding researcher- UM Young Researcher (Sciences Discipline) and selected to be a member of the Young Scientist Network – Academy of Sciences Malaysia (YSN-ASM) in 2015. Currently, Lai is an affiliate member of Energy Institute (EI, UK), Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE, UK) and successfully registered as a Chartered Engineer with the Engineering Council, UK in 2017. Lai is recognised as among the calibre and outstanding young scientists in the country who have the potential of advancing the scientific ecosystem in Malaysia.