Document Type


Publication Date



American Chemical Society

Source Publication

ACS Catalysis

Source ISSN



The spinel Co3O4 has emerged as a promising alternative to noble-metal-based electrocatalysts for electrochemical water electrolysis in alkaline medium. However, pure Co3O4, despite having high activity in anodic water oxidation, remains inactive toward the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). Here, a Ni-doped Co3O4(Co3–xNixO4) prepared by a simple method exhibits favorable HER activity and stability (>300 h, whether in 1 M KOH or the realistic 30 wt % KOH solution) after in situ electrochemical activation, outperforming almost all of the oxide-based electrocatalysts. More importantly, using the combination of in situ Raman spectroscopy and multiple high-resolution electron microscopy techniques, it is identified that the surface of Co3–xNixO4 crystals is reduced into intertwined CoyNi1–yO nanoparticles with highly exposed {110} reactive planes. Density functional theory calculations further prove that the Ni-doped CoO component in CoyNi1–yO plays a major role during the alkaline HER, because the introduction of Ni atoms into Co–O octahedra can optimize the electrical conductivity and tailor the adsorption/desorption free energies of Had and OHad intermediates.


Accepted version. ACS Catalysis, Vol. 11, No. 13 (July 2, 2021): 8174-8182. DOI. © 2021 American Chemical Society. Used with permission.

huang_15229acc.docx (578 kB)
ADA Accessible Version

Included in

Chemistry Commons