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Chestnut-like Copper Cobalt Phosphide Catalyst for All-pH Hydrogen Evolution Reaction and Alkaline Water Electrolysis

Abstract

A novel type of chestnut-like copper cobalt phosphide (CuxCo1-xP) nanoarrays on carbon fiber paper (CP) for the splitting of water are synthesized through a simple hydrothermal followed by in situ phosphorization treatment. As a hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) catalyst, the CuxCo1-xP/CP shows high HER activity at all PH values. To drive a current density of 10 mA cm-2, the optimized Cu0.075Co0.925P/CP with an overpotential of 47, 120, and 70 mV in acidic, neutral, and alkaline media, respectively. In addition, the Cu0.075Co0.925P/CP exhibits excellent activity for oxygen evolution reaction (OER) with a small overpotential of 221 mV to reach 10 mA cm-2. Furthermore, when Cu0.075Co0.925P/CP used as both the cathode and anode for overall water splitting in 1.0 M KOH, a two-electrode electrolyzer needs only a cell voltage of 1.55 V to achieve 10 mA cm-2, superior to noble metal-based Pt/C||IrO2 cell and most previously reported electrocatalysts. Moreover, this electrolyzer can be powered by a single AA battery with a voltage of 1.5 V. The density functional theory (DFT) calculations further evidence that the good catalytic activity of CuxCo1-xP/CP resulted from the smaller hydrogen adsorption free energy (ΔGH*) and overpotential. This work provides a promising strategy to design high-performance and low-cost electrocatalysts for overall water splitting and other energy-related applications.

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Publication details

The article was received on 08 Apr 2019, accepted on 15 May 2019 and first published on 16 May 2019


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C9TA03686E
J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019, Accepted Manuscript

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    Chestnut-like Copper Cobalt Phosphide Catalyst for All-pH Hydrogen Evolution Reaction and Alkaline Water Electrolysis

    L. Yan, B. Zhang, J. Zhu, S. Zhao, Y. Li, B. Zhang, J. Jiang, X. Ji, H. Zhang and P. Shen, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2019, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C9TA03686E

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