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Issue 26, 2019
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Pt-like hydrogen evolution on a V2O5/Ni(OH)2 electrocatalyst

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We report a highly efficient and cost-effective binder-free catalyst for the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) using V2O5 particles on nickel foam (NF) (V2O5/Ni(OH)2@NF). This low-cost catalyst exhibits Pt-like activity with a low overpotential of 39 mV at 10 mA cm−2 (lowest among V-based materials which are known to be generally non-explosive and safe) and long-term stability in a 1 M KOH solution. The overall performance is highly comparable to that of a commercial 20% Pt/C catalyst on NF. Furthermore, the V2O5/Ni(OH)2@NF outperforms the Pt/C catalyst at a higher current density (100 mA cm−2) which is more preferable for industrial applications. First principles calculations show that the remarkable HER activity is ascribed to the near-zero adsorption free energy (ΔGH*) on the Ni-site of Ni(OH)2@NF and the Ni- and O-sites of in situ generated V2O5@NF, due to the charge transfer arising from adsorbed O atoms on Ni(111), along with high conductivity of NF. O-adsorption on the Ni transition metal surface downshifts the d-band center of the transition metal, which helps in quick hydrogen desorption by weakening the hydrogen binding strength. As a result, most Ni fcc sites of V2O5/Ni(OH)2@NF are more active than pristine Ni fcc sites. The V2O5/Ni(OH)2@NF catalyst initiates overall water splitting at 1.53 V in a 6 M KOH solution for solar-to-hydrogen generation in a two-electrode set-up using a solar panel.

Graphical abstract: Pt-like hydrogen evolution on a V2O5/Ni(OH)2 electrocatalyst

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Supplementary files

Article information

05 Apr 2019
10 Jun 2019
First published
11 Jun 2019

J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019,7, 15794-15800
Article type

Pt-like hydrogen evolution on a V2O5/Ni(OH)2 electrocatalyst

A. Meena, M. Ha, S. S. Chandrasekaran, S. Sultan, P. Thangavel, Ahmad M. Harzandi, B. Singh, J. N. Tiwari and K. S. Kim, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019, 7, 15794
DOI: 10.1039/C9TA03627J

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