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Efficient electrochemical water oxidation to hydrogen peroxide over intrinsic carbon defect-rich carbon nanofibers
Journal of Materials Chemistry A  (IF12.732),  Pub Date : 2021-09-27, DOI: 10.1039/d1ta06306e
Yanhui Sun, Xin Chen, Shangbo Ning, Wei Zhou, Zhongshan Yang, Jiwei Cui, Defa Wang, Jinhua Ye, Lequan Liu

The two-electron water oxidation reaction (2e-WOR) provides a promising route to produce hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) from water; but it is currently hampered by low H2O2 partial current. Here, intrinsic carbon defect-rich carbon nanofibers are demonstrated to be highly effective for electrochemical 2e-water oxidation. A H2O2 current density of 72.6 mA cm−2 is achieved at 2.9 V vs. RHE which is among the highest values reported for the 2e-WOR. XPS and NEXAFS studies indicate that pentagonal and octagonal ring defects are dominant in the optimal sample. A combination of DFT calculations and a methanol competitive oxidation experiment reveals that ring defects effectively reduce the adsorption strength of OH*, which ultimately promotes the 2e-WOR for valuable H2O2 production. Our study makes a helpful attempt in exploring carbon-based materials for efficient 2e-WOR electrocatalysts.