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Research Article

Unconventional dual-vacancies in nickel diselenide-graphene nanocomposite for high-efficiency oxygen evolution catalysis

Pengkun Wei1Zewei Hao1Yang Yang1Mingyang Liu1,2( )Haijun Zhang3( )Min-Rui Gao4( )Shu-Hong Yu4( )
Tianjin Key Laboratory of Environmental Remediation and Pollution Control, College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Nankai University, Tianjin 300350, China
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rice University, Houston, Texas 77005, USA
Center for Aircraft Fire and Emergency, Economics and Management College, Civil Aviation University of China, Tianjin 300300, China
Division of Nanomaterials & Chemistry, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at the Microscale, CAS Center for Excellence in Nanoscience, Hefei Science Center of CAS, Collaborative Innovation Center of Suzhou Nano Science and Technology, Department of Chemistry, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
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Graphical Abstract


Although nickel-based catalysts display good catalytic capability and excellent corrosion resistance under alkaline electrolytes for water splitting, it is still imperative to enhance their activity for real device applications. Herein, we decorated Ni0.85Se hollow nanospheres onto reduced graphene oxide (RGO) through a hydrothermal route, then annealed this composite at different temperatures (400 °C, NiSe2-400 and 450 °C, NiSe2-450) under argon atmosphere, yielding a kind of NiSe2/RGO composite catalysts. Positron annihilation spectra revealed two types of vacancies formed in this composite catalyst. We found that the NiSe2-400 catalyst with dual Ni-Se vacancies is able to catalyze the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) efficiently, needing a mere 241 mV overpotential at 10 mA·cm-2. In addition, this catalyst exhibits outstanding stability. Computational studies show favorable energy barrier on NiSe2-400, enabling moderate OH- adsorption and O2 desorption, which leads to the enhanced energetics for OER.

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Nano Research
Pages 3292-3298
Cite this article:
Wei P, Hao Z, Yang Y, et al. Unconventional dual-vacancies in nickel diselenide-graphene nanocomposite for high-efficiency oxygen evolution catalysis. Nano Research, 2020, 13(12): 3292-3298.






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Received: 14 June 2020
Revised: 19 July 2020
Accepted: 22 July 2020
Published: 22 August 2020
© Tsinghua University Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature