The development of efficient electrocatalysts is important to produce clean and sustainable hydrogen fuel on a large scale. With respect to cathodic reactions, Pt exhibits an overwhelming electrocatalytic capability in the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) in comparison with other earth-abundant electrocatalysts, despite its rarity and high cost. So, a hybrid catalyst that combines a low-cost electrocatalyst with Pt would balance cost-effectiveness with catalytic activity. Herein, α-phase molybdenum carbide (MoC1−x) nanoparticles (NPs) decorated with a small amount of Pt (MoC1−x/Pt-NPs) are designed to achieve high-performance hydrogen production in acidic and alkaline media. MoC1−x-NPs exhibit good electrocatalytic HER activity as well as stability and durability. They show favorable catalytic kinetics in an alkaline medium, suggesting an active water dissociation process. After Pt decoration, Pt-NPs that are 2–3 nm in diameter are well incorporated with MoC1−x-NPs. MoC1−x/Pt-NPs with a small amount of Pt (2.7–3 wt%) and are able to perform superior electrocatalytic HER activity, and possess stability and durability that is comparable to that of commercial Pt/C. Notably, they exhibit a higher intrinsic catalytic activity compared to that of Pt/C in an alkaline medium, indicating that they promote the sluggish catalytic kinetics of Pt in alkaline medium.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) Grant funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT, and Future Planning, South Korea (NRF-2016M3A7B4909318).
© 2019 The Authors. Published by WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
- hydrogen evolution reaction
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- General Chemical Engineering
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)
- General Materials Science
- General Engineering
- General Physics and Astronomy