What is it about?

Alkaline hydrogen evolution reaction is of great significance as a way to produce green hydrogen while using non-precious catalysts. We have developed a new composite catalyst entirely composed of non-noble elements to overcome the kinetic limitations that have hindered efficient HER in alkaline media. Our catalyst owes its efficiency to the presence of bridging oxygen that acts as a relay to transport the hydrogen intermediate among catalytic sites. Using DFT and isotope experiments, we show that the HER pathway follows the Tafel mechanism, rarely observed in alkaline media.

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Why is it important?

Our findings highlight new ways to design non-noble catalysts for high-efficiency alkaline HER electrocatalysis. In our catalyst, the catalytic sites are bonded via bridging oxygen, which plays as critical role in adsorbing and relaying intermediate H*, thereby enabling a sustained high performance in alkaline media.


This article is our effort to design an efficient electrocatalyst interface to introduce synergy between the different components and achieve a rare high-efficiency in alkaline HER. I hope the article will stimulate new ideas and breakthrough in developing the next generation high-efficiency catalysts that are at the same time economically and ecologically sustainable.

Fengxia Geng

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This page is a summary of: Composite non-noble system with bridging oxygen for catalyzing Tafel-type alkaline hydrogen evolution, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, December 2022, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2209760120.
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