Duan Research Group

Hetero-integrated Nanostructures and Nanodevices


A Highly Active Star Decahedron Cu Nanocatalyst for Hydrocarbon Production at Low Overpotentials

Chungseok Choi, Tao Cheng, Michelle Flores Espinosa, Huilong Fei, Xiangfeng Duan, William A Goddard III, Yu Huang

Adv. Mater. 31, 1805405 (2019)

The electrochemical carbon dioxide reduction reaction (CO2RR) presents a viable approach to recycle CO2 gas into low carbon fuels. Thus, the development of highly active catalysts at low overpotential is desired for this reaction. Herein, a high‐yield synthesis of unique star decahedron Cu nanoparticles (SD‐Cu NPs) electrocatalysts, displaying twin boundaries (TBs) and multiple stacking faults, which lead to low overpotentials for methane (CH4) and high efficiency for ethylene (C2H4) production, is reported. Particularly, SD‐Cu NPs show an onset potential for CH4 production lower by 0.149 V than commercial Cu NPs. More impressively, SD‐Cu NPs demonstrate a faradaic efficiency of 52.43% ± 2.72% for C2H4 production at −0.993 ± 0.0129 V. The results demonstrate that the surface stacking faults and twin defects increase CO binding energy, leading to the enhanced CO2RR performance on SD‐Cu NPs.
UCLA, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
607 Charles E. Young Drive East, Box 951569
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1569
E-mail: xduan@chem.ucla.edu