Co nanoparticles encapsulated in porous N-Doped carbon nanofibers as an efficient electrocatalyst for hydrogen evolution reaction

Lulu Zhang, Shangqian Zhu, Shuyu Dong, Nam Jae Woo, Zhenglong Xu, Jiaqiang Huang, Jang Kyo Kim, Minhua Shao

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


One of the main challenges in commercializing electrolyzer is to develop cheap and highly active electrocatalysts toward hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). Although low Pt loadings in PEM electrolyzers have been demonstrated, it's still worthwhile to remove the Pt in the long term. Herein, porous N-doped carbon nanofibers containing encapsulated Co nanoparticles are in situ obtained by electrospinning and subsequent carbonization as efficient electrocatalysts for HER. The optimized catalyst treated at 800°C shows a remarkably high HER activity with an overpotential of only 159 mV at current density of 10 mA cm -2 in a 0.5 M H 2 SO 4 solution, which is better than most non-precious metal based and metal free catalysts. The carbonization temperature as well as the concentration of nitrogen precursors have significant effects on the structure and catalytic activity of the composites. This work shows the efficacy of preparing noble-metal-free electrocatalysts for HER using the facile electrospinning method.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)J3271-J3275
JournalJournal of the Electrochemical Society
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Electrochemistry
  • Materials Chemistry

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