Synthesis of Platinum-Nickel Hydroxide Nanocomposites for Electrocatalytic Reduction of Water

Lei Wang, Yihan Zhu, Zhenhua Zeng, Chong Lin, Michael Giroux, Lin Jiang, Yu Han, Jeffrey Greeley, Chao Wang, Jian Jin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

117 Scopus citations


Water electrolysis represents a promising solution for storage of renewable but intermittent electrical energy in hydrogen molecules. This technology is however challenged by the lack of efficient electrocatalysts for the hydrogen and oxygen evolution reactions. Here we report on the synthesis of platinum-nickel hydroxide nanocomposites and their electrocatalytic applications for water reduction. An in situ reduction strategy taking advantage of the Ni(II)/Ni(III) redox has been developed to enable and regulate the epitaxial growth of Pt nanocrystals on single-layer Ni(OH)2 nanosheets. The obtained nanocomposites (denoted as Pt@2D-Ni(OH)2) exhibit an improvement factor of 5 in catalytic activity and a reduction of up to 130 mV in overpotential compared to Pt for the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). A combination of electron microscopy/spectroscopy characterization, electrochemical studies and density functional calculations was employed to uncover the structures of the metal-hydroxide interface and understand the mechanisms of catalytic enhancement.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)456-461
Number of pages6
JournalNano Energy
StatePublished - Nov 25 2016

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: This work was supported by the Key Project of National Natural Science Foundation of China (21433012), the National Basic Research Program of China (grant no. 2013CB933000), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (21273270), the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (BK20130007). The work at Johns Hopkins University was supported by the National Science Foundation (CBET 1437219) and the JHU Catalyst Award. The work at Purdue University was supported by a DOE Early Career Award from the Chemical Sciences, Geosciences and Biosciences Division, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Office of Science, U.S. Department of Energy. Use of the Center for Nanoscale Materials was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, under Contract E-AC02-06CH11357. We gratefully acknowledge the computing resources provided on Blues and Fusion, a high-performance computing cluster operated by the Laboratory Computing Resource Center at Argonne National Laboratory. Use of computational resources through the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) is also gratefully acknowledged.


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