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Issue 15, 2018
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B,N,S tri-doped reduced graphite oxide–cobalt oxide composite: a bifunctional electrocatalyst for enhanced oxygen reduction and oxygen evolution reactions

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Abstract

In the present study, we followed a unique approach to synthesize a nanocomposite of B,N,S tri-doped graphite oxide and cobalt oxide. Initially, B,N,S tri-doped carbon quantum dots were prepared by a hydrothermal method using boric acid and L-cysteine as precursors, and were further immobilized on graphite oxide in the presence of a cobalt precursor to synthesise a nanocomposite of cobalt oxide and B,N,S tri-doped graphite oxide. The crystal structure and morphology of the BNS/rGO–Co nanocomposite were studied by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) imaging, respectively. Electrochemical studies indicated a substantially higher electrocatalytic activity of the catalyst with an onset potential (Eonset) of 0.87 V vs. RHE and a current density (JL) of 4.4 mA cm−2 at 1600 rpm in alkaline conditions. Additionally, rotating ring disc electrode (RRDE) measurements confirmed a single step ∼4 electron transfer pathway, similar to that of Pt/C catalyst. Interestingly, the BNS/rGO–Co nanocomposite shows enhanced stability (up to 5000 cycles under similar conditions) and a high tolerance to methanol crossover effects, when compared to the state-of-the-art Pt/C catalyst. Concomitantly, the catalyst also exhibits remarkable oxygen evolution reaction activity. Such a remarkable electrocatalytic activity of the BNS/rGO–Co nanocomposite over its N,S-bi-doped counterpart is due to the importance of boron synergy with the N and S sites in the rGO, and also to the presence of the cobalt oxide interface for better conversion.

Graphical abstract: B,N,S tri-doped reduced graphite oxide–cobalt oxide composite: a bifunctional electrocatalyst for enhanced oxygen reduction and oxygen evolution reactions

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
08 Mar 2018
Accepted
18 Jun 2018
First published
21 Jun 2018

New J. Chem., 2018,42, 12908-12917
Article type
Paper

B,N,S tri-doped reduced graphite oxide–cobalt oxide composite: a bifunctional electrocatalyst for enhanced oxygen reduction and oxygen evolution reactions

S. B. Ingavale, I. M. Patil, H. B. Parse, N. Ramgir, B. Kakade and A. Swami, New J. Chem., 2018, 42, 12908
DOI: 10.1039/C8NJ01138A

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