Photocatalytic hydrogen production by biomimetic indium sulfide using Mimosa pudica leaves as template

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Biomimetic sulfur-deficient indium sulfide (In2.77S4) was synthesized by a template-assisted hydrothermal method using leaves of Mimosa pudica as a template for the first time. The effect of this template in modifying the morphology of the semiconductor particles was determined by physicochemical characterization, revealing an increase in surface area, decrease in microsphere size and pore size and an increase in pore volume density in samples synthesized with the template. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analysis showed the presence of organic sulfur (S–O/S–C/S–H) and sulfur oxide species (–SO2, SO3 2−, SO4 2−) at the surface of the indium sulfide in samples synthesized with the template. Biomimetic indium sulfide also showed significant amounts of Fe introduced as a contaminant present on the Mimosa pudica leaves. The presence of these sulfur and iron species favors the photocatalytic activity for hydrogen production by their acting as a sacrificial reagent and promoting water oxidation on the surface of the templated particles, respectively. The photocatalytic hydrogen production rates over optimally-prepared biomimetic indium sulfide and indium sulfide synthesized without the organic template were 73 and 22 μmol g−1, respectively, indicating an improvement by a factor of three in the templated sample.


  • Omar A. Carrasco-Jaim
  • Ruben Ahumada-Lazo
  • Pip C.J. Clark
  • Christian Gómez-Solis
  • Simon M. Fairclough
  • Sarah J. Haigh
  • Marina A. Leontiadou
  • Karsten Handrup
  • Leticia M. Torres-Martínez
  • Wendy R. Flavell
External organisations
  • Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon
  • University of Manchester
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Materials Chemistry


  • InS, Photocatalytic hydrogen production, Template-assisted hydrothermal, XPS analysis
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2770-2783
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan 28
Publication categoryResearch