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Investigation of Fe2N@Carbon encapsulated in N-doped graphene-like carbon as a catalyst in sustainable zinc-air batteries

Abstract

The rational construction of low cost, efficient, and stable oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) electrocatalysts is important for the commercialization of fuel cells and metal-air batteries. In this article, we report an easy and effective soft-template method to in-situ assemble Fe2N nanoparticles on the surface of N-doped graphene-like carbon (NC). The prepared Fe2N nanoparticles were covered by a few carbon layers, which promoted the connection of Fe-NX clusters with graphene to facilitate the formation of Fe–N–C active sites. Fe-NX and NC units were found to respectively fulfill different functionalities, and commonly afford the sample with excellent performance. The electrochemical data show that the high purity and crystallization Fe2N@NC display a synergistically enhanced catalytic activity for ORR, including positive onset potential (0.084 V), half-wave potential(-0.036 V) and high electron transfer number(~4e-) towards 20%Pt/C. Additionally, the existence of carbon shells wrapped on Fe2N can restrain its expansion and dissolution. In addition, the as-prepared catalyst was implemented as an air catalyst for zinc-air batteries and were found to display a comparable open circuit voltage ca. 1.48 V and maximum power density of 82.3 mW cm-2. These results demonstrate that the Fe2N@NC catalyst may serve as a good alternative to the precious Pt for ORR in practical applications.

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Publication details

The article was received on 23 Aug 2017, accepted on 07 Oct 2017 and first published on 09 Oct 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7CY01721A
Citation: Catal. Sci. Technol., 2017, Accepted Manuscript
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    Investigation of Fe2N@Carbon encapsulated in N-doped graphene-like carbon as a catalyst in sustainable zinc-air batteries

    Z. Chen, Y. Li, L. Lei, S. Bao, M. Wang, H. Liu, Z. Zhao and M. Xu, Catal. Sci. Technol., 2017, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C7CY01721A

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