Designing Novel Catalysts to Convert Green House Gas to Value-added Fuels and Feedstocks
- Author(s): Choi, Chungsuk
- Advisor(s): Yu, Huang
- et al.
Developing high-efficient catalysts for carbon dioxide reduction reaction (CO2RR) to value-added fuels and chemicals could dissolve humanity facing problems of shortage of renewable energy sources and global climate change because of upwards of CO2 emission from human activity. The electrochemical approach is the easiest and cost-effective method for CO2RR. Copper (Cu) is the only material to utilize electrochemical CO2RR to potential fuels and hydrocarbons (especially methane (CH4) and ethylene (C2H4)). However, a mixture of primary products, competition with hydrogen evolution reaction (HER), and high overpotential of CO2RR from monometallic Cu is still challenging to develop high selectivity of Cu catalysts at less applied potentials. Surface defects have been considered the most attractive electrochemical CO2RR since grain boundaries (GBs) exhibited 2.5 times higher CO2RR activity with a less competitive reaction (HER). Thus, I have focused on designing and understanding high-efficiency electrochemical Cu catalysts having surface defects as active sites for CO2RR. I designed two types of Cu-based catalysts; multi-twined nanoparticles (NPs) and Cu nanowires (NWs) with surface steps, which successfully develop CO2RR performance. Electrochemical and other materials spectroscopies characterized the property of defect structures on the surface of catalysts. This research set improved the status of high-efficiency electrochemical catalysts for CO2RR and developed the understanding of the effects of surface defect on CO2RR.