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Adv Mater. 2018 Jun;30(26):e1707301. doi: 10.1002/adma.201707301. Epub 2018 May 7.

Atomic-Scale Core/Shell Structure Engineering Induces Precise Tensile Strain to Boost Hydrogen Evolution Catalysis.

Author information

1
Key Laboratory of Synthetic and Biological Colloids, Ministry of Education, School of Chemical and Material Engineering, Jiangnan University, Wuxi, 214122, China.
2
Shanghai Key Laboratory of Special Artificial Microstructure, School of Physics Science and Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai, 200092, China.
3
Department of Materials Science & Engineering and BIC-ESAT, College of Engineering, Peking University, Beijing, 100871, China.
4
School of Materials Science and Engineering, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, 450001, China.
5
State Key Laboratory of Chemical Resource Engineering, Beijing University of Chemical Technology, Beijing, 100029, China.
6
Institute of Applied and Physical Chemistry and Center for Environmental Research and Sustainable Technology, Universität Bremen, 28359, Bremen, Germany.
7
School of Material Science and Engineering, North Minzu University, Yinchuan, 750021, China.

Abstract

Tuning surface strain is a new strategy for boosting catalytic activity to achieve sustainable energy supplies; however, correlating the surface strain with catalytic performance is scarce because such mechanistic studies strongly require the capability of tailoring surface strain on catalysts as precisely as possible. Herein, a conceptual strategy of precisely tuning tensile surface strain on Co9 S8 /MoS2 core/shell nanocrystals for boosting the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) activity by controlling the MoS2 shell numbers is demonstrated. It is found that the tensile surface strain of Co9 S8 /MoS2 core/shell nanocrystals can be precisely tuned from 3.5% to 0% by changing the MoS2 shell layer from 5L to 1L, in which the strained Co9 S8 /1L MoS2 (3.5%) exhibits the best HER performance with an overpotential of only 97 mV (10 mA cm-2 ) and a Tafel slope of 71 mV dec-1 . The density functional theory calculation reveals that the Co9 S8 /1L MoS2 core/shell nanostructure yields the lowest hydrogen adsorption energy (∆EH ) of -1.03 eV and transition state energy barrier (∆E2H* ) of 0.29 eV (MoS2 , ∆EH = -0.86 eV and ∆E2H* = 0.49 eV), which are the key in boosting HER activity by stabilizing the HER intermediate, seizing H ions, and releasing H2 gas.

KEYWORDS:

electrocatalysis; hydrogen evolution; materials chemistry; structure engineering; tensile strain

PMID:
29737007
DOI:
10.1002/adma.201707301

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