Electrocatalytic N2 reduction reaction (NRR) stands as one of the most promising green alternatives to achieve clean, carbon-free and sustainable NH3 production, solving the globe’s future production of food and feed-stock chemicals, and serve as practical carrier of sustainable energy. Up to now, the NRR field has been dominated mostly by noble metals, transition metals and their corresponding oxides, carbides, nitrides and sulfides, and metal-free materials. Despite the significant progress in this field, NRR electrocatalysts exhibiting both high activity and selectivity do not exist today and novel materials are still much sought after. Thus, the development of suitable catalytic materials will be a game changer, allowing NRR to fulfil its role in the globe’s energy-economy landscape.
The project’s aim is to develop a new concept to combine the virtues of both pristine and converted Metal-Organic Framework (MOF) based materials, forming a new strategy to overcome the activity and selectivity limitations of currently-explored NRR electrocatalytic systems. Specifically, we will (1) develop new, controllable synthetic pathways for the conversion of MOFs into porous, highly active NRR electrocatalysts, with tuned chemical composition, electronic, and catalytic properties, (2) design pristine MOF-based ion-gating layers to precisely regulate the flux of protons toward the underlying catalytically-active site, and thus suppress the competing HER process and boost NH3 faradaic efficiency, (3) combine the two previous strategies to construct and analyze a full NRR system for simultaneous activity and selectivity enhancement.
This proposal is highly multidisciplinary, combining materials science, electrocatalysis and photo-electrochemistry. It has the potential to significantly accelerate the development of applications in renewable-energy, e.g. solar cells, light-emitting diodes, heterogeneous catalysts, batteries, water electrolyzers, fuel cells, and sensing devices.
Field of science
- /engineering and technology/environmental engineering/energy and fuels/fuel cell
- /natural sciences/chemical sciences/electrochemistry/electrocatalysis
- /natural sciences/chemical sciences/inorganic chemistry/metals
- /engineering and technology/environmental engineering/energy and fuels/renewable energy
Call for proposal
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