Facile and Green Synthesis of Well-Defined Nanocrystal Oxygen Evolution Catalysts by Rational Crystallization Regulation

Wulyu Jiang, Lu Xia, Bruna Ferreira Gomes, Michael Haumann, Holger Dau, Christina Roth, Werner Lehnert, Meital Shviro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The development of catalysts for an economical and efficient oxygen evolution reaction (OER) is critical for clean and sustainable energy storage and conversion. Nickel–iron-based (NiFe) nanostructures are widely investigated as active OER catalysts and especially shape-controlled nanocrystals exhibit optimized surface structure and electronic properties. However, the structural control from amorphous to well-defined crystals is usually time-consuming and requires multiple stages. Here, a universal two-step precipitation-hydrothermal approach is reported to prepare a series of NiFe-based nanocrystals (e.g., hydroxides, sulfides, and molybdates) from amorphous precipitates. Their morphology and evolution of atomic and electronic structure during this process are studied using conclusive microscopy and spectroscopy techniques. The short-term, additive-free, and low-cost method allows for the control of the crystallinity of the materials and facilitates the generation of nanosheets, nanorods, or nano-octahedra with excellent water oxidation activity. The NiFe-based crystalline catalysts exhibit slightly compromised initial activity but more robust long-term stability than their amorphous counterparts during electrochemical operation. This facile, reliable, and universal synthesis method is promising in strategies for fabricating NiFe-based nanostructures as efficient and economically valuable OER electrocatalysts.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2308594
JournalSmall
Volume20
Issue number21
Early online date28 Dec 2023
DOIs
StatePublished - 23 May 2024
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Wiley-VCH GmbH.

Funding

This work had received funding from the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking under grant agreement No 875088. This Joint Undertaking receives support from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research innovation program and Hydrogen Europe and Hydrogen Europe Research. This work was also funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) under the funding code Live‐XAS (Grant 05K22WC1). The authors acknowledge Dr. Thomas Lunkenbein in Fritz–Haber‐Institute for helpful discussions, Mr. Heinrich Hartmann and Ms. Schumacher Birgit, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, and the beamline staff at KMC‐3 of Bessy‐II (Dr. I. Zizak and colleagues, Helmholtz‐Center Berlin) for their technical support.

FundersFunder number
European Union's Horizon 2020 research innovation program and Hydrogen Europe and Hydrogen Europe Research
Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung05K22WC1
Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking875088

    Keywords

    • X-ray absorption spectra
    • crystallization
    • electrocatalysts
    • nickel-iron
    • oxygen evolution reaction

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