Cobalt tungsten oxide hydroxide hydrate (CTOHH) on DNA scaffold: an excellent bi-functional catalyst for oxygen evolution reaction (OER) and aromatic alcohol oxidation†
A material with interdisciplinary properties is of wide interest for use in environmental applications. Currently, hydrogen generation by electrolysis and formation of carbonyl derivatives from alcohols are two different fields that focus on energy and environmental applications. In this work, a new material, Cobalt Tungsten Oxide Hydroxide Hydrate (CTOHH) on deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) scaffold having chain-like morphology has been prepared for the first time by a facile microwave heating method. The same CTOHH was also prepared without the DNA scaffold and resulted in irregular aggregated molecular structures. Further, both CTOHH-DNA and CTOHH were converted into CoWO4-DNA and CoWO4, respectively by annealing them at a temperature of 600 °C. All the four catalysts were used for electrocatalytic oxygen evolution reaction (OER) and for oxidation of aromatic alcohols. In OER, CTOHH-DNA delivered fruitful results compared to all other electrocatalysts. For attaining a current density of 10 mA cm−2, it just required an overpotential of 355 mV with a Tafel slope value of 47.5 mV dec−1. Similarly, all four catalysts were also analyzed for selective and controlled oxidation of aromatic alcohols to their respective aldehydes and ketones using molecular oxygen as a green oxidant where CTOHH-DNA showed better results. Chemo-selectivity has been observed for CTOHH-DNA in the co-presence of hydroxyl and cyano functional groups. The durability of CTOHH-DNA was analyzed and it showed excellent catalytic activity retention up to five cycles.