Surface Engineering of MoS2 via Laser-Induced Exfoliation in Protic Solvents

Zhi Wen Gao, Mengjie Liu, Weiran Zheng, Xiandi Zhang, Lawrence Yoon Suk Lee (Corresponding Author)

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


With excellent performance in the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER), molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) is considered a promising nonprecious candidate to substitute Pt-based catalysts. Herein, pulsed laser irradiation in liquid is used to realize one-step exfoliation of bulk 2H-MoS2 to ultrastable few-layer MoS2 nanosheets. Such prepared MoS2 nanosheets are rich in S vacancies and metallic 1T phase, which significantly contribute to the boosted catalytic HER activity. Protic solvents play a pivotal role in the production of S vacancies and 2H-to-1T phase transition under laser irradiation. MoS2 exfoliated in an optimal solvent of formic acid exhibits outstanding HER activity with an overpotential of 180 mV at 10 mA cm−2 and Tafel slope of 54 mV dec−1.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1903791
Issue number44
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019


  • laser exfoliation in liquid
  • molybdenum disulfide
  • phase transition
  • solvent effect
  • sulfur vacancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biomaterials
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science


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