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J Am Chem Soc. 2012 Nov 7;134(44):18153-6. doi: 10.1021/ja306499n. Epub 2012 Oct 29.

Inhibition of charge disproportionation of MnO2 electrocatalysts for efficient water oxidation under neutral conditions.

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  • 1Department of Applied Chemistry, School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8656, Japan.


The development of Mn-oxide electrocatalysts for the oxidation of H(2)O to O(2) has been the subject of intensive researches not only for their importance as components of artificial photosynthetic systems, but also as O(2)-evolving centers in photosystem II. However, limited knowledge of the mechanisms underlying this oxidation reaction hampers the ability to rationally design effective catalysts. Herein, using in situ spectroelectrochemical techniques, we demonstrate that the stabilization of surface-associated intermediate Mn(3+) species relative to charge disproportionation is an effective strategy to lower the overpotential for water oxidation by MnO(2). The formation of N-Mn bonds via the coordination of amine groups of poly(allylamine hydrochloride) to the surface Mn sites of MnO(2) electrodes effectively stabilized the Mn(3+) species, resulting in an ~500-mV negative shift of the onset potential for the O(2) evolution reaction at neutral pH.

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