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Superaerophilic Copper Nanowires for Efficient and Switchable CO2 Electroreduction


Copper is one of the most efficient electrocatalysts for switchable carbon dioxide conversion, but design of advanced Cu-based catalyst with high selectivity while suppressing hydrogen evolution remains a great challenge. Herein, we use Cu nanowires (Cu NWs) as the starting materials and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) as the surface modifier to make the superaerophilic electrode using a wettability control strategy. This strategy allows for tuning the selectivity of CO2 reduction reaction (CO2RR) and decreasing hydrogen evolution rate simultaneously, by facilitating the supply of CO2 reactants and inhibiting the adsorption of water (protons). The transferring point from pinning to bursting state turned out to be the optimized condition leading to the highest CO2RR Faradic efficiency without significant interference on current density. The optimized superaerophilic Cu NWs catalyst shows CO-selectivity with a Faraday efficiency of 71% at -0.4 V vs. RHE and HCOOH-selectivity with a Faraday efficiency of 68% at -0.6 V vs. RHE. Moreover, the accelerated gas and ion diffusion and homogenized reactions also avoided accumulative damages on the surface of Cu NWs and enhanced the stability of Cu catalyst. This wettability tuning strategy provides a facile and efficient way to optimize gas and ion diffusion layers, therefore promote the performance of CO2RR. This strategy can be extended to other gas consumption electrocatalysts design potentially.

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Publication details

The article was received on 22 Aug 2018, accepted on 09 Nov 2018 and first published on 09 Nov 2018

Article type: Communication
DOI: 10.1039/C8NH00259B
Citation: Nanoscale Horiz., 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Superaerophilic Copper Nanowires for Efficient and Switchable CO2 Electroreduction

    Y. Zhang, Z. Cai, Y. Zhao, X. Wen, W. Xu, Y. Zhong, L. Bai, W. Liu, Y. Zhang, Y. Zhang, Y. Kuang and X. Sun, Nanoscale Horiz., 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8NH00259B

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