Remarkable stability of a molecular ruthenium complex in PEM water electrolysis†
The dinuclear Ru diazadiene olefin complex, [Ru2(OTf)(μ-H)(Me2dad)(dbcot)2], is an active catalyst for hydrogen evolution in a Polymer Exchange Membrane (PEM) water electrolyser. When supported on high surface area carbon black and at 80 °C, [Ru2(OTf)(μ-H)(Me2dad)(dbcot)2]@C evolves hydrogen at the cathode of a PEM electrolysis cell (400 mA cm−2, 1.9 V). A remarkable turn over frequency (TOF) of 7800 molH2 molcatalyst−1 h−1 is maintained over 7 days of operation. A series of model reactions in homogeneous media and in electrochemical half cells, combined with DFT calculations, are used to rationalize the hydrogen evolution mechanism promoted by [Ru2(OTf)(μ-H)(Me2dad)(dbcot)2].