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J Phys Chem Lett. 2012 Feb 2;3(3):399-404. doi: 10.1021/jz2016507. Epub 2012 Jan 19.

Synthesis and Activities of Rutile IrO2 and RuO2 Nanoparticles for Oxygen Evolution in Acid and Alkaline Solutions.

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†Department of Mechanical Engineering, ‡Department of Materials Science and Engineering, and §Electrochemical Energy Laboratory, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, United States.


The activities of the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) on iridium-oxide- and ruthenium-oxide-based catalysts are among the highest known to date. However, the OER activities of thermodynamically stable rutile iridium oxide (r-IrO2) and rutile iridium oxide (r-RuO2), normalized to catalyst mass or true surface area are not well-defined. Here we report a synthesis of r-IrO2 and r-RuO2 nanoparticles (NPs) of ∼6 nm, and examine their OER activities in acid and alkaline solutions. Both r-IrO2 and r-RuO2 NPs were highly active for OER, with r-RuO2 exhibiting up to 10 A/goxide at 1.48 V versus reversible hydrogen electrode. When comparing the two, r-RuO2 NPs were found to have slightly higher intrinsic and mass OER activities than r-IrO2 in both acid and basic solutions. Interestingly, these oxide NPs showed higher stability under OER conditions than commercial Ru/C and Ir/C catalysts. Our study shows that these r-RuO2 and r-IrO2 NPs can serve as a benchmark in the development of active OER catalysts for electrolyzers, metal-air batteries, and photoelectrochemical water splitting applications.


acid; alkaline; electrocatalysis; iridium oxide; nanomaterials; oxygen evolution; ruthenium oxide; rutile; water splitting


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