Carbon supported Ni3N/Ni heterostructure for hydrogen evolution reaction in both acid and alkaline media

Dhandapani Balaji, Jagannathan Madhavan, Mohamad S. AlSalhi, Mamduh J. Aljaafreh, Saradh Prasad, Pau Loke Show

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28 Scopus citations


Hydrogen (H2) is a carbon-free clean energy source and can be generated from water by electrolysis. The fabrication of highly sustainable electrode materials to replace expensive platinum is vital for the supportable production of molecular hydrogen via electrolysis of water. Nickel based electrode materials have attracted a great attention in the water splitting reaction. In this context, supporting material such as carbon is adopted to increase the catalytic activity. In this study, a special route was advanced to construct carbon supported Ni3N/Ni, which was as an effective electrocatalyst for hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) in both 0.5 M H2SO4 and 1 M KOH electrolytes. We observed that the carbon support can effectively improve the electronic structure of Ni3N/Ni by introducing intrinsic active sites. The optimized Ni3N/Ni@C composite showed superior electrical conductivity and charge transfer rate. Consequently, the Ni3N/Ni@C750 °C composite showed enhanced electrocatalytic behaviour with a small overpotential of 163 and 172 mV to attain an optimal current density of 10 mA cm−2 and durability over 1000 cycles in acid and alkaline electrolytes towards HER application.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)30739-30749
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number60
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2021


  • Carbon composite
  • Electrocatalyst
  • Hydrogen production
  • NiN/Ni@C composite
  • Nickel nitride


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