The availability of efficient hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) catalysts is of high importance for solar fuel technologies aimed at reducing future carbon emissions. Even though Pt electrodes are excellent HER electrocatalysts, commercialization of large-scale hydrogen production technology requires finding an equally efficient, low-cost, earth-abundant alternative. Here, high porosity, metal-organic framework (MOF) films have been used as scaffolds for the deposition of a Ni-S electrocatalyst. Compared with an MOF-free Ni-S, the resulting hybrid materials exhibit significantly enhanced performance for HER from aqueous acid, decreasing the kinetic overpotential by more than 200 mV at a benchmark current density of 10 mA cm-2. Although the initial aim was to improve electrocatalytic activity by greatly boosting the active area of the Ni-S catalyst, the performance enhancements instead were found to arise primarily from the ability of the proton-conductive MOF to favourably modify the immediate chemical environment of the sulfide-based catalyst.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)