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Issue 25, 2019
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Cu nanowire-catalyzed electrochemical reduction of CO or CO2

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Abstract

We prepared micrometer long Cu nanowires (NWs) of 25 and 50 nm diameters and studied their electrocatalysis for electrochemical reduction of CO/CO2 in 0.1 M KHCO3 at room temperature. The 50 nm NWs showed better selectivity than the 25 nm NWs, and catalyzed CO reduction to C2-hydrocarbons (C2H4 + C2H6) with a combined faradaic efficiency (FE) of 60% (C2H4 FE of 35% and mass activity of 4.25 A g−1 Cu) at −1.1 V (vs. reversible hydrogen electrode). The NW-catalyzed CO2 reduction is less efficient due to the extra CO2 to CO step required for the formation of C2-hydrocarbons. This experimental evidence combined with DFT calculations suggests that CO is an important intermediate and NWs provide a large Cu(100) surface for *CO hydrogenation (to *CHO) and *CO–*CHO coupling, leading to more selective reduction of CO than CO2 towards C2-hydrocarbons.

Graphical abstract: Cu nanowire-catalyzed electrochemical reduction of CO or CO2

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
12 Apr 2019
Accepted
05 Jun 2019
First published
14 Jun 2019

Nanoscale, 2019,11, 12075-12079
Article type
Communication
Author version available

Cu nanowire-catalyzed electrochemical reduction of CO or CO2

H. Zhang, Y. Zhang, Y. Li, S. Ahn, G. T. R. Palmore, J. Fu, A. A. Peterson and S. Sun, Nanoscale, 2019, 11, 12075
DOI: 10.1039/C9NR03170G

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