Cooperation between holey graphene and NiMo alloy for hydrogen evolution in an acidic electrolyte

Yoshikazu Ito, Tatsuhiko Ohto, Daisuke Hojo, Mitsuru Wakisaka, Yuki Nagata, Linghan Chen, Kailong Hu, Masahiko Izumi, Jun Ichi Fujita, Tadafumi Adschiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)


The development of noble-metal-free hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) materials for electrochemical water splitting is the key to achieving low-cost and efficient electrocatalysis that drives electrochemical hydrogen evolution. However, the electrocatalytic activities of most non-noble metals decrease in acidic electrolytes. Here, we have fabricated non-noble-metal electrodes using a bicontinuous and open porous NiMo alloy covered by nitrogen-doped (N-doped) graphene with nanometer-sized holes. This noble-metal-free HER catalyst exhibits performance almost identical with that of a Pt/C electrode, while its original catalytic activity is preserved even in acidic electrolytes. Density functional theory calculations indicate that the interfacial fringes between the nanoholes and NiMo surface induce charge transfer and promote hydrogen adsorption and desorption. The nanometer-sized holes simultaneously provide minimal surface area for chemical reactions, while delaying NiMo dissolution in excessive amounts of acidic electrolyte. Our method for the fabrication of the NiMo alloy provides a route to a promising class of electrochemical hydrogen-producing electrodes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3579-3586
Number of pages8
JournalACS Catalysis
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Apr 6


  • NiMo alloy
  • acidic electrolyte
  • holey graphene
  • hydrogen evolution
  • non-noble metal
  • porous graphene
  • water splitting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)


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