Coordination engineering of iridium nanocluster bifunctional electrocatalyst for highly efficient and pH-universal overall water splitting

Qilun Wang, Cong Qiao Xu, Wei Liu, Sung Fu Hung, Hong Bin Yang, Jiajian Gao, Weizheng Cai, Hao Ming Chen, Jun Li, Bin Liu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Water electrolysis offers a promising energy conversion and storage technology for mitigating the global energy and environmental crisis, but there still lack highly efficient and pH-universal electrocatalysts to boost the sluggish kinetics for both cathodic hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) and anodic oxygen evolution reaction (OER). Herein, we report uniformly dispersed iridium nanoclusters embedded on nitrogen and sulfur co-doped graphene as an efficient and robust electrocatalyst for both HER and OER at all pH conditions, reaching a current density of 10 mA cm−2 with only 300, 190 and 220 mV overpotential for overall water splitting in neutral, acidic and alkaline electrolyte, respectively. Based on probing experiments, operando X-ray absorption spectroscopy and theoretical calculations, we attribute the high catalytic activities to the optimum bindings to hydrogen (for HER) and oxygenated intermediate species (for OER) derived from the tunable and favorable electronic state of the iridium sites coordinated with both nitrogen and sulfur.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4246
JournalNature Communications
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2020

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