This work studies the electrocatalytic activity improvement mechanism of the plasma etching treatment on oxygen reduction reaction catalysts, which reveals that the highly active metal-nitrogen species induced by nitrogen plasma treatment is the main active contributor of the improved electrocatalytic activity.
Plasma etching treatment is an effective strategy to improve the electrocatalytic activity, but the improvement mechanism is still unclear. In this work, a nitrogen-doped carbon nanotube-encased iron nanoparticles (Fe@NCNT) catalyst is synthesized as the model catalyst, followed by plasma etching treatment with different parameters. The electrocatalytic activity improvement mechanism of the plasma etching treatment is revealed by combining the physicochemical characterizations and electrochemical results. As a result, highly active metal–nitrogen species introduced by nitrogen plasma etching treatment are recognized as the main contribution to the improved electrocatalytic activity, and the defects induced by plasma etching treatment also contribute to the improvement of the electrocatalytic activity. In addition, the prepared catalyst also demonstrates superior ORR activity and stability than the commercial Pt/C catalyst.
Peng Rao†, Yanhui Yu†, Shaolei Wang*, Yu Zhou, Xiao Wu, Ke Li, Anyuan Qi, Peilin Deng, Yonggang Cheng, Jing Li, Zhengpei Miao, Xinlong Tian*
How to cite:
P. Rao, Y. Yu, S. Wang, Y. Zhou, X. Wu, K. Li, A. Qi, P. Deng, Y. Cheng, J. Li, Z. Miao, X. Tian, Exploration 2023, 4, 20230034.