Design of grain boundary enriched bimetallic borides for enhanced hydrogen evolution reaction

Huawei Huang, Hyeonjung Jung, Hyunwoo Jun, Dong Yoon Woo, Jeong Woo Han*, Jinwoo Lee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Grain boundaries can induce strained regions in the nanostructure of catalysts that can provide highly active surfaces with optimized electronic structures for catalysis. Although studies on grain boundary have been reported for catalysis, it is still challenging to construct nanostructures with rich grain boundaries and reveal their function mechanism. Herein, we present a facile strategy to synthesize bimetallic borides Ni3B/MoB nanosheets with abundant grain boundaries and unravel the impact of grain boundaries on electrocatalytic performance for hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). Experimental results, combined with theoretical calculations, revealed that the synthesized Ni3B/MoB featured numerous grain boundaries and optimized morphology. More importantly, the electronic states at the grain boundary were adjusted and ΔGH* was optimized. This resulted in highly intrinsic catalytic activities for HER in both acidic and alkaline conditions. This work sheds new light on the synthesis and regulation of transition metal borides and functional materials enriched grain boundaries for catalysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number126977
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
StatePublished - Feb 1 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government ( MSIT ) ( 2015M1A2A2056557 , 2018M1A2A2061987 , 2018M3D3A1A01018005 , 2019M3E6A1064706 , 2020R1A2C300414611 , 2020R1A2C3004146 , and 2020H1D3A1A02081018 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.


  • Electrocatalysis
  • Grain boundary
  • Hydrogen evolution
  • Metal boride
  • Water splitting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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