From “waste to gold”: a one-pot method to synthesize ultrafinely dispersed Fe2O3-based nanoparticles on N-doped carbon for synergistic and efficient water splitting†
We report a novel, simple, and one-pot method for the synthesis of ultrafinely dispersed iron oxide based nanoparticles (NPs) embedded in a nitrogen doped carbon matrix (denoted as Fe2O3/Fe@CN). A well-designed iron oxide based hybrid that demonstrates high activity and excellent durability for the HER in alkaline solution has been reported for the first time. The catalyst displays a small Tafel slope of 114 mV per decade and good electrocatalytic stability for 30 000 seconds. Detailed electrochemical and physical studies indicate that the high HER activity of the hybrid catalyst results from the strong interaction between Fe-based NPs and N-doped graphitic carbon, and especially the synergistic effect of Fe and Fe2O3.