Turning Harmful Deposition of Metal Impurities into Activation of Nitrogen-Doped Carbon Catalyst toward Durable Electrochemical CO2 Reduction

Chanyeon Kim, Yoong Kee Choe, Da Hye Won, Ung Lee, Hyung Suk Oh, Dong Ki Lee, Chang Hyuck Choi, Sungho Yoon, Woong Kim, Yun Jeong Hwang, Byoung Koun Min

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1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Electrochemical CO2 reduction is typically operated under highly refined electrolyte conditions. However, trace amounts of metal impurities exist even in ultrapure electrolyte solutions, causing a fatal deactivation of the catalysts. To address this issue, various efforts have been made to prevent the harmful deposition of metal impurities on the catalyst. Herein, we designed a new system where metal impurities are utilized as activators. We demonstrated "self-activation" of the N-doped carbon catalyst in the presence of Fe impurity with remarkable stability for 120 h. The origin of the self-activation was the selective adsorption of Fe impurity forming highly dispersed Fe sites through Fe-N interactions. The correlations between the self-activation and number of N sites and their moieties were investigated and further generalized into other metals, such as Ni, Zn, and Cu. This novel general strategy has enormous impact on design of durable catalysts for various electrochemical reactions suffering from deactivation by metal impurities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2343-2350
Number of pages8
JournalACS Energy Letters
Volume4
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Sep 13

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry (miscellaneous)
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Materials Chemistry

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    Kim, C., Choe, Y. K., Won, D. H., Lee, U., Oh, H. S., Lee, D. K., Choi, C. H., Yoon, S., Kim, W., Hwang, Y. J., & Min, B. K. (2019). Turning Harmful Deposition of Metal Impurities into Activation of Nitrogen-Doped Carbon Catalyst toward Durable Electrochemical CO2 Reduction. ACS Energy Letters, 4(9), 2343-2350. https://doi.org/10.1021/acsenergylett.9b01581