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Phosphine vapor-assisted construction of heterostructured Ni2P/NiTe2 catalysts for efficient hydrogen evolution

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Abstract

Heterostructured catalysts with unique interfaces and properties endow distinct advantages for many electrochemical reactions. Herein, a phosphine (PH3) vapor-assisted phase and structure engineering strategy is developed for the controllable conversion of non-active NiTe into a heterostructured active Ni2P/NiTe2 catalyst for alkaline hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). The crystalline NiTe2 phase in situ generated in a PH3 vapor environment and the nanosheet morphology both contribute to the outstanding alkaline HER performance with an overpotential of only 62 mV to achieve a current density of −10 mA cm−2. Experimental and DFT mechanistic studies suggest the Ni2P/NiTe2 interfaces provide abundant exposed active sites. The Ni2P/NiTe2 catalyst shows the lowest kinetic barrier for water dissociation and the adsorbed H* can simultaneously bind to two Ni atoms at the interface of Ni2P/NiTe2(011), which greatly enhances the H* binding and HER activities. DFT simulation also shows that more electrons transfer from Ni atoms to H* on Ni2P/NiTe2(011) (0.22 e) than that on NiTe2(011) (0.13 e), which explains the enhanced H* binding at the Ni2P/NiTe2(011) interface. The PH3 vapor synthetic approach is also applied to treat other chalcogenide-based materials with low HER activities, such as Ni3S2, to create Ni2P/NiS2 interfaces for significantly enhanced HER activity.

Graphical abstract: Phosphine vapor-assisted construction of heterostructured Ni2P/NiTe2 catalysts for efficient hydrogen evolution

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
03 Mar 2020
Accepted
11 May 2020
First published
12 May 2020

Energy Environ. Sci., 2020, Advance Article
Article type
Paper

Phosphine vapor-assisted construction of heterostructured Ni2P/NiTe2 catalysts for efficient hydrogen evolution

Y. Li, X. Tan, H. Tan, H. Ren, S. Chen, W. Yang, S. C. Smith and C. Zhao, Energy Environ. Sci., 2020, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/D0EE00666A

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