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Karst landform-featured monolithic electrode for water electrolysis in neutral media

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Abstract

The development of cheap and efficient electrodes for water splitting is an ongoing challenge. Herein, a nickel foam-based monolithic electrode is reported with high performance for both hydrogen and oxygen evolution reactions in neutral media. The karst landform-featured electrode consists of metallic Ni in the valley areas and Ni/α-Ni(OH)2 heterostructures as towers on the surface. Remarkably, the electrode can switch between HER and OER reversibly and flexibly with long-term viability. Scanning electrochemical microscopy (SECM) analysis and computational studies proved the vital roles of the karst landform structure and the interface of the heterostructure in its efficient bifunctionality. Combined with a common photovoltaic cell, a water electrolysis cell with the bifunctional electrode can implement splitting of natural seawater (pH ∼ 8.0) with a high solar-to-hydrogen (STH) conversion efficiency of 16.5%. This cheap, flexible, robust, easily obtained and bifunctional electrode has potential applications for water splitting in the hydrogen economy.

Graphical abstract: Karst landform-featured monolithic electrode for water electrolysis in neutral media

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Publication details

The article was received on 25 Jul 2019, accepted on 12 Nov 2019 and first published on 12 Nov 2019


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C9EE02380A
Energy Environ. Sci., 2020, Advance Article

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    Karst landform-featured monolithic electrode for water electrolysis in neutral media

    X. Gao, Y. Chen, T. Sun, J. Huang, W. Zhang, Q. Wang and R. Cao, Energy Environ. Sci., 2020, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C9EE02380A

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