Direct synthesis of bifunctional nanorods from a Co-adenine-MoO3 hybrid for overall water splitting

Anning Jiang, Wei Zhang, Zegao Wang, Naga Pradeep Nidamanuri, Qiang Li, Xiao Cheng Zeng, Mingdong Dong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Transition-metal carbides have been proven to be efficient catalysts for the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER); however, their application as a bifunctional electrocatalyst towards the HER and oxygen evolution reaction (OER) altogether remains a significant challenge. Herein, we report unique heterostructures comprising cobalt-doped molybdenum-carbide (Co-Mo2C) nanorods encapsulated in nitrogen-doped graphitic carbon shell (NGCS) through one-step pyrolysis of a Co-adenine-MoO3 hybrid. The as-synthesized Co-Mo2C@NGCS heterostructures could be directly used as a catalyst for overall water splitting. Low overpotentials of 161 and 360 mV are needed for the HER and OER to reach 10 mA cm-2, and the corresponding Tafel slopes are just 60 and 54 mV dec-1, respectively. Theoretical simulations implied that the synergistic effects between the cobalt heteroatoms, NGCS and Mo2C resulted in the enhanced catalytic performance. Our work not only provides a facile method to construct hybrid electrocatalysts with inexpensive metals, but also gives new insights into the mechanism of the HER and OER in alkaline media.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)546-554
Number of pages9
JournalMaterials Chemistry Frontiers
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Materials Chemistry


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