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Rapid Adsorption Enables Interface Engineering of PdMnCo Alloy/Nitrogen-Doped Carbon as Highly Efficient Electrocatalysts for Hydrogen Evolution Reaction

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journal contribution
posted on 17.10.2017, 00:00 by Ruirui Zhang, Zhongti Sun, Ruilu Feng, Zhiyu Lin, Haizhen Liu, Mengsi Li, Yang Yang, Ruohong Shi, Wenhua Zhang, Qianwang Chen
The catalytic performance of Pd-based catalysts has long been hindered by surface contamination, particle agglomeration, and lack of rational structural design. Here we report a simple adsorption method for rapid synthesis (∼90 s) of structure-optimized Pd alloy supported on nitrogen-doped carbon without the use of surfactants or extra reducing agents. The material shows much lower overpotential than 30 wt % Pd/C and 40 wt % Pt/C catalysts while exhibiting excellent durability (80 h). Moreover, unveiled by the density functional theory (DFT) calculation results, the underlying reason for the outstanding performance is that the PdMnCo alloy/pyridinic nitrogen-doped carbon interfaces weaken the hydrogen-adsorption energy on the catalyst and thus optimize the Gibbs free energy of the intermediate state (ΔGH*), leading to a remarkable electrocatalytic activity. This work also opens up an avenue for quick synthesis of a highly efficient structure-optimized Pd-based catalyst.