Author

Meili Sheng

Date of Award:

2016

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Chemistry and Biochemistry

Advisor/Chair:

Yujie Sun

Abstract

Electrolysis of water to form H2 and O2 and electrocatalytic reduction of CO2 to CO have attracted increasing attention these years. To realize a large-scale production of H2 and CO, it is critical to develop efficient and earth-abundant catalysts that could overcome the slow kinetics of the O2 evolution reaction in water splitting and selectively reduce CO2 over the competing H2 evolution reaction. This thesis describes the synthesis, characterization, and evaluation of nickel-based heterogeneous and homogeneous (molecular) electrocatalysts for water oxidation and CO2 reduction, respectively. The first project describes the Fe incorporated ultrathin Ni(OH)2 nanosheets which exhibit dramatically enhanced performance in electrocatalytic O2 evolution. The second project focus on a molecular Ni complex with a pyridyl biscarbene ligand for electrocatalytic CO2 reduction. Compared to those typical Ni complexes with cyclam-derivatized and/or -analogous tetradentate ligands, our Ni complex showed high selectivity for CO2 reduction over the competing H2 evolution reaction.

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Available for download on Friday, January 01, 2021

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