Author(s) Yu, J.; Guo, Y.; Miao, S.; Ni, M.; Zhou, W.; Shao, Z.
Journal ACS Appl Mater Interfaces
Date Published 2018 Oct 10

The exploition of cost-efficient and high-performance catalysts to boost hydrogen generation in overall water splitting is crucial to economically obtain green hydrogen energy. Herein, we propose a novel electrocatalyst consisting of spherical RuS on S-doped reduced graphene oxide (s-RuS/S-rGO) with high catalytic behavior toward hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) in all pH conditions, especially in alkaline electrolytes. RuS/S-rGO delivers small overpotentials of 25 and 56 mV at current densities of 10 and 50 mA cm, respectively, and a low Tafel slope of 29 mV dec with good stability for 100 h in basic solutions. This performance is comparable to and even exceeds that of documented representative electrocatalysts, including the benchmark Pt/C; since the price of Ru is about 1/25th that of Pt, this novel electrocatalyst offers a low-cost alternative to Pt-based HER electrocatalysts. Ruthenium-centered sites of RuS in this hybrid catalyst are responsible for the HER active sites, and S doping in RuS also exerts an important function for the HER activity; density functional theory calculations disclose that the water dissociation ability and adsorption free energy of hydrogen intermediate adsorption (Δ G) for RuS are very close to those of Pt. A homemade electrolyzer with an s-RuS/S-rGO (cathode)//RuO/C (anode) couple presents a relatively low voltage of 1.54 V at a current density of 20 mA cm, while maintaining negligible deactivation over a 24 h operation.

DOI 10.1021/acsami.8b08239
ISSN 1944-8252
Citation ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2018;10(40):3409834107.

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