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Carbon-based catalysts and non-conductive substrate catalysts

  1. Carbon-based catalysts

By combining transition metal compounds with highly conductive carbon-based materials, researchers have successfully developed carbon-based catalysts. These catalysts have significantly improved electrocatalytic performance for water splitting and are capable of supporting themselves. Common examples of carbon-based substrates include carbon cloth (CC), carbon paper (CP), and carbon fiber (CF), among others.

A novel electrocatalytic material consisting of N-doped porous carbon-encapsulated Co nanoparticles supported on carbon cloth (CC) was synthesized using a high-temperature calcination method for hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). This material exhibited a large number of active sites from the exposed metal Co nanoparticles, and the synergistic effect between Co nanoparticles and N-doped carbon substrate. The catalyst achieved a current density of 100 mA cm-2 at an overpotential of 340 mV. In another study, a Ru-based electrocatalysts (Ru-H2O/CC) was prepared by in-situ growth of Ru nanoparticles (NPs) on carbon cloth (CC) using a hydrothermal method. Ru-H2O/CC demonstrated excellent electrocatalytic activity for oxygen evolution reaction (OER), with a current density of 10 mA cm-2 at an overpotential of 270 mV and a Tafel slope of 63 mV dec-1. The performance of Ru-H2O/CC surpassed that of commercial RuO2. Density functional theory calculations revealed that the superior OER performance of Ru-H2O/CC was attributed to the partial oxidation of amorphous Ru, leading to the formation of RuO2 with abundant oxygen vacancies. This resulted in the formation of a Ru/RuO2 heterostructure, which facilitated electron transfer and optimized the OER performance. The theoretical analysis provided insights into the underlying mechanism of the enhanced electrocatalytic activity of Ru-H2O/CC for OER.

Copper Foam, What Is The Application Prospect Of This New Material-2

Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) were synthesized by high-temperature calcination on carbon paper, and Fe-doped two-dimensional NiSe nanosheets (NiSe NS) were grown in situ using a hydrothermal method. The resulting composite material was used as an oxygen evolution reaction (OER) electrocatalyst. The synergistic effect between Fe-doped 2D NiSe NS and CNTs resulted in the formation of abundant electrocatalytic active sites, as well as excellent conductivity, leading to a significant enhancement in OER activity. The catalyst achieved a current density of 10 mA cm-2 with an overpotential of only 282.7 mV. The combination of Fe-doped NiSe NS and CNTs formed an interconnected network structure, which not only eliminated the need for binders but also effectively increased the interface contact area for rapid charge transfer. The 3D porous network structure of the material possessed numerous micropores, promoting the diffusion rate of reactants and O2 bubbles. More importantly, the rational doping of Fe in NiSe regulated the electronic structure, increasing the electrochemical active sites and facilitating the adsorption of water molecules, thereby accelerating the entire OER process. This novel catalyst design holds great promise for efficient and sustainable electrocatalysis in various energy conversion and storage applications. Further optimization and characterization of the catalyst’s performance and stability will be crucial for its practical implementation in real-world devices.

  1. Non-conductive substrate catalysts

Metal-based and carbon-based substrates are known for their excellent conductivity and mechanical properties, making them widely used in the preparation of self-supporting electrocatalysts. In addition to these substrates, some non-conductive substrates such as textiles, paper, and sponges, which are cost-effective, abundant, and flexible, can also be applied in the fabrication o

Nickel Foam
Nickel Foam

f electrocatalyst materials.

The surface of ordinary laboratory filter paper is extremely rough and porous, with abundant hydroxyl groups along the cellulose chain, which is effective for the absorption and diffusion of metal ions. To activate the filter paper, it is alternately immersed in NiSO4 solution and NaBH4 solution. This process leads to the formation of nickel boride nanoparticles on the filter paper substrate. Subsequently, a Ni-P-B/Paper electrode is prepared using electroless plating method, with a weight only one-fifth of that of traditional metal electrodes. The Ni-P-B/Paper electrode exhibits a high current density of 50 mA cm-2 at an overpotential of 76 mV in the hydrogen evolution reaction. Furthermore, it demonstrates excellent stability, maintaining stable operation for 240 hours at a high current density of 1000 mA cm-2 without significant decay.

The use of filter paper as a substrate for the Ni/MnO2-FP electrode offers several advantages. Firstly, the filter paper is highly porous, allowing for efficient diffusion of Ni2+ ions into the paper fibers. This ensures a stable and uniform distribution of Ni on the surface of the paper, which is crucial for achieving good conductivity and electron transfer. Additionally, the rough and porous nature of the filter paper creates a moon-like morphology on the electrode surface, characterized by numerous craters and pores. These features significantly increase the contact area between the electrode and the electrolyte, promoting efficient diffusion of the electrolyte and enhancing the overall performance of the electrode.

Nickel Foam (8)

Furthermore, the presence of the MnO2 layer on the Ni-coated filter paper further improves the electrochemical properties of the electrode. MnO2 is known for its high electrochemical activity and catalytic performance, making it an ideal material for enhancing the OER (oxygen evolution reaction) catalytic activity of the electrode. The deposition of a thin MnO2 layer on the Ni-coated filter paper surface ensures a uniform distribution of the electrochemically active material, maximizing its contact with the electrolyte. This results in improved OER catalytic performance, making the Ni/MnO2-FP electrode a promising candidate for various electrochemical applications. A uniform Ni layer was plated on the surface of the laboratory filter paper (cellulose paper, FP), followed by the deposition of a thin MnO2 layer of electrochemically active material on the surface of Ni2+-FP using an anodic electrodeposition method, to fabricate a flexible Ni/MnO2-FP electrode. The rough and porous filter paper allows rapid and stable diffusion of Ni2+ ions into the paper fibers and then being reduced to metallic Ni, thereby enhancing the conductivity of the substrate and the electron transfer rate. The moon-like craters and abundant pores on the electrode surface increase the contact area between the electrode and the electrolyte, thereby improving the diffusion efficiency of the electrolyte and enhancing the OER catalytic performance of the material.

Picture of Lu


Our materials research team from Tsinghua University postdoctoral researcher lin and Harbin Institute of Technology researcher Mu, Nanjing University of Technology researcher Wei, they share their expertise in foam metal materials article.

About HGP

WE were established in 2003, located in the Gaoxin Zone of Guangdong-Guangxi Cooperation Special Experimental Zone, covering an area of 70 mu, with a plant of about 30,000 square meters, with more than 170 employees, is an advanced new material technology enterprise integrating research and development, production and sales.

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