Determining the importance of the electrode support and fabrication method during the initial screening process of an active catalyst for the oxygen evolution reaction†
This work aims to illustrate the importance of selecting the best substrate and ‘powder to electrodes’ fabrication technique when screening new OER catalysts. A well-established water oxidation catalyst, RuO2 powder is used to fabricate different types of commonly used electrodes found in literature including: dropcast electrodes, doctor-blade electrodes and pressed electrodes. A variety of support substrates are used based on materials such as platinum, titanium, nickel and glassy carbon. Additionally, a variety of substrate geometries are also investigated, including: discs, foils and foams. The results show that the OER activity of the RuO2 powder is significantly varied depending on the electrode fabrication and substrate combination utilised. These findings show the importance of screening different substrates and fabrication methods when investigating the OER with new powder materials.