We present a combined experimental and theoretical study to demonstrate that the electrocatalytic activity of NiFe layered double hydroxides (NiFe LDHs) for the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) can be significantly enhanced by systematic cobalt incorporation using coprecipitation and/or intercalation. Electrochemical measurements show that cobalt modified NiFe LDH possesses an enhanced activity for the OER relative to pristine NiFe LDH. The Co-modified NiFe LDH exhibits overpotentials in the range of 290-322 mV (at 10 mA cm-2), depending on the degree of cobalt content. The best catalyst, cobalt intercalated NiFe LDH achieved a current density of 10 mA cm-2 at an overpotential of ∼265 mV (compared to 310 mV for NiFe LDH), with a near unity (99%) faradaic efficiency and long-term stability. Density functional theory calculations revealed that enhanced activity of Co-modified NiFe LDH could be attributed to the ability of Co to tune the electronic structure of the NiFe LDH so that optimal binding of OER reaction intermediates could be achieved.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Materials Chemistry