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Template assisted synthesis of Ni,N co-doped porous carbon from Ni incorporated ZIF-8 frameworks for electrocatalytic oxygen reduction reaction

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Abstract

A heteroatom doped porous carbon electrocatalyst with enhanced oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) performance in alkaline medium was obtained by high temperature treatment of Ni incorporated ZIF-8 frameworks and its composite with g-C3N4 as a supporting matrix template. The morphology and porosity of this heteroatom containing carbon were tuned by varying the Ni : Zn molar ratio in Ni/Zn ZIF-8 and Ni/Zn ZIF-8@g-C3N4 composites. The template aided synthetic strategy using g-C3N4 helped in the controlled decomposition of composites leading to a heteroporous sheet like architecture with increased nitrogen content. The Ni/Zn ZIF-8 sample on heat treatment in the 800–1000 °C temperature range led to the formation of Ni,N co-doped porous carbon (Ni-NPC) with Ni–C active sites. The defective sites induced by nickel carbide along with the distributed N atoms on the carbon surface enabled active O2 adsorption sites. The high surface area, high degree of graphitisation as well as the defects created by well dispersed N and Ni on porous carbon matrices favoured charge separation leading to higher electrochemical ORR activity. The Ni,N co-doped carbon catalyst in alkaline medium exhibited a limiting current density of 5.2 mA cm−2 with a half-wave potential of 0.76 V vs. RHE in 0.1 M KOH. The catalyst also showed improved methanol tolerance and better stability compared to the standard Pt/C catalyst.

Graphical abstract: Template assisted synthesis of Ni,N co-doped porous carbon from Ni incorporated ZIF-8 frameworks for electrocatalytic oxygen reduction reaction

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
19 Mar 2020
Accepted
24 Jun 2020
First published
24 Jun 2020

New J. Chem., 2020, Advance Article
Article type
Paper

Template assisted synthesis of Ni,N co-doped porous carbon from Ni incorporated ZIF-8 frameworks for electrocatalytic oxygen reduction reaction

V. Priya K., M. Thomas, R. Illathvalappil, S. K., S. Kurungot, B. N. Nair, A. P. Mohamed, G. M. Anilkumar, T. Yamaguchi and U. S. Hareesh, New J. Chem., 2020, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/D0NJ01373K

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