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Issue 12, 2014
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Highly graphitized nitrogen-doped porous carbon nanopolyhedra derived from ZIF-8 nanocrystals as efficient electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction reactions

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Abstract

Nitrogen-doped graphitic porous carbons (NGPCs) have been synthesized by using a zeolite-type nanoscale metal–organic framework (NMOF) as a self-sacrificing template, which simultaneously acts as both the carbon and nitrogen sources in a facile carbonization process. The NGPCs not only retain the nanopolyhedral morphology of the parent NMOF, but also possess rich nitrogen, high surface area and hierarchical porosity with well-conducting networks. The promising potential of NGPCs as metal-free electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction reactions (ORR) in fuel cells is demonstrated. Compared with commercial Pt/C, the optimized NGPC-1000-10 (carbonized at 1000 °C for 10 h) catalyst exhibits comparable electrocatalytic activity via an efficient four-electron-dominant ORR process coupled with superior methanol tolerance as well as cycling stability in alkaline media. Furthermore, the controlled experiments reveal that the optimum activity of NGPC-1000-10 can be attributed to the synergetic contributions of the abundant active sites with high graphitic-N portion, high surface area and porosity, and the high degree of graphitization. Our findings suggest that solely MOF-derived heteroatom-doped carbon materials can be a promising alternative for Pt-based catalysts in fuel cells.

Graphical abstract: Highly graphitized nitrogen-doped porous carbon nanopolyhedra derived from ZIF-8 nanocrystals as efficient electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction reactions

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Publication details

The article was received on 19 Jan 2014, accepted on 05 Mar 2014 and first published on 10 Mar 2014


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C4NR00348A
Author version available: Download Author version (PDF)
Citation: Nanoscale, 2014,6, 6590-6602
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    Highly graphitized nitrogen-doped porous carbon nanopolyhedra derived from ZIF-8 nanocrystals as efficient electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction reactions

    L. Zhang, Z. Su, F. Jiang, L. Yang, J. Qian, Y. Zhou, W. Li and M. Hong, Nanoscale, 2014, 6, 6590
    DOI: 10.1039/C4NR00348A

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