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MoS2-graphene-CuNi2S4 nanocomposite an efficient electrocatalyst for the hydrogen evolution reaction

Adarakatti, PS and Mahanthappa, M and Hughes, JP and Rowley-Neale, SJ and Smith, GC and S, A and Banks, CE (2019) MoS2-graphene-CuNi2S4 nanocomposite an efficient electrocatalyst for the hydrogen evolution reaction. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 44 (31). pp. 16069-16078. ISSN 0360-3199

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Abstract

© 2019 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC We present a facile methodology for the synthesis of a novel 2D-MoS2, graphene and CuNi2S4 (MoS2-g-CuNi2S4) nanocomposite that displays highly efficient electrocatalytic activity towards the production of hydrogen. The intrinsic hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) activity of MoS2 nanosheets was significantly enhanced by increasing the affinity of the active edge sites towards H+ adsorption using transition metal (Cu and Ni2) dopants, whilst also increasing the edge sites exposure by anchoring them to a graphene framework. Detailed XPS analysis reveals a higher percentage of surface exposed S at 17.04%, of which 48.83% is metal bonded S (sulfide). The resultant MoS2-g-CuNi2S4 nanocomposites are immobilized upon screen-printed electrodes (SPEs) and exhibit a HER onset potential and Tafel slope value of – 0.05 V (vs. RHE) and 29.3 mV dec−1, respectively. These values are close to that of the polycrystalline Pt electrode (near zero potential (vs. RHE) and 21.0 mV dec−1, respectively) and enhanced over a bare/unmodified SPE (– 0.43 V (vs. RHE) and 149.1 mV dec−1, respectively). Given the efficient, HER activity displayed by the novel MoS2-g-CuNi2S4/SPE electrochemical platform and the comparatively low associated cost of production for this nanocomposite, it has potential to be a cost-effective alternative to Pt within electrolyser technologies.

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