Amorphous Cobalt Phyllosilicate with Layered Crystalline Motifs as Water Oxidation Catalyst

Ju Seong Kim, Inchul Park, Eun Suk Jeong, Kyoungsuk Jin, Won Mo Seong, Gabin Yoon, Hyunah Kim, Byunghoon Kim, Ki Tae Nam, Kisuk Kang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

96 Citations (Scopus)


The development of a high-performance oxygen evolution reaction (OER) catalyst is pivotal for the practical realization of a water-splitting system. Although an extensive search for OER catalysts has been performed in the past decades, cost-effective catalysts remain elusive. Herein, an amorphous cobalt phyllosilicate (ACP) with layered crystalline motif prepared by a room-temperature precipitation is introduced as a new OER catalyst; this material exhibits a remarkably low overpotential (η ≈ 367 mV for a current density of 10 mA cm−2). A structural investigation using X-ray absorption spectroscopy reveals that the amorphous structure contains layered motifs similar to the structure of CoOOH, which is demonstrated to be responsible for the OER catalysis based on density functional theory calculations. However, the calculations also reveal that the local environment of the active site in the layered crystalline motif in the ACP is significantly modulated by the silicate, leading to a substantial reduction of η of the OER compared with that of CoOOH. This work proposes amorphous phyllosilicates as a new group of efficient OER catalysts and suggests that tuning of the catalytic activity by introducing redox-inert groups may be a new unexplored avenue for the design of novel high-performance catalysts.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1606893
JournalAdvanced Materials
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jun 6
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim


  • electrocatalyst
  • layered (oxy)hydroxides
  • oxygen evolution reaction
  • phyllosilicate
  • water splitting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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