Nano-sized manganese oxides as biomimetic catalysts for water oxidation in artificial photosynthesis

Mohammad Mahdi Najafpour, Fahimeh Rahimi, Eva Mari Aro, Choon Hwan Lee, Suleyman I. Allakhverdiev

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

127 Citations (Scopus)


There has been a tremendous surge in research on the synthesis of various metal compounds aimed at simulating the water-oxidizing complex (WOC) of photosystem II (PSII). This is crucial because the water oxidation half reaction is overwhelmingly rate-limiting and needs high over-voltage (approx. 1 V), which results in low conversion efficiencies when working at current densities required for hydrogen production via water splitting. Particular attention has been given to the manganese compounds not only because manganese has been used by nature to oxidize water but also because manganese is cheap and environmentally friendly. The manganese-calcium cluster in PSII has a dimension of about approximately 0.5 nm. Thus, nano-sized manganese compounds might be good structural and functional models for the cluster. As in the nanometre-size of the synthetic models, most of the active sites are at the surface, these compounds could be more efficient catalysts than micrometre (or bigger) particles. In this paper, we focus on nano-sized manganese oxides as functional and structural models of the WOC of PSII for hydrogen production via water splitting and review nano-sized manganese oxides used in water oxidation by some research groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2383-2395
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of the Royal Society Interface
Issue number75
Publication statusPublished - Oct 7 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Manganese
  • Nano-sized manganese oxides
  • Photosystem II
  • Water oxidation
  • Water splitting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering


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