Title: Synthesis of nitrogen-doped reduced graphene oxide as metal-free electrocatalyst for oxygen reduction reactions

Authors: Xiaoyang Cui; Shubin Yang; Pulickel M. Ajayan; Zhengjun Zhang

Addresses: State Key Laboratory of New Ceramics and Fine Processing, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China ' Key Laboratory of Aerospace Advanced Materials and Performance of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Beihang University, Beijing, 100191, China ' Department of Materials Science and Nano Engineering, Rice University, Houston, TX, 77005, USA ' Key Laboratory of Advanced Materials (MOE), School of Materials Science and Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China

Abstract: Developing high performance and low cost electrocatalyst for oxygen reduction reactions (ORR) is pivotal for the commercial viability of fuel cells. In this context, great effort has been devoted to developing non-precious metal catalysts or even metal-free catalysts for ORR. Here, we successfully prepared nitrogen-doped reduced graphene oxide (NRGO) with high surface area via KOH activation, followed by thermal treatment under ammonia gas for the incorporation of nitrogen into the carbon lattice. The NRGO catalyst exhibited high electrocatalytic activity towards ORR as compared to commercial Pt/C catalyst, suggesting that it might be possible to develop NRGO into a cost-effective and highly active catalyst, as an alternative to the Pt-based catalysts.

Keywords: nitrogen doped graphene; reduced graphene oxide; RGO; oxygen reduction reaction; ORR; metal-free electrocatalysts; fuel cells; catalysts.

DOI: 10.1504/IJNM.2016.079219

International Journal of Nanomanufacturing, 2016 Vol.12 No.3/4, pp.252 - 263

Available online: 20 Sep 2016 *

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