Catalytic Water Splitting
Inspired by artificial photosynthesis, the photoelectrolysis of water directly with sunlight to produce clean H2 is a very promising route for solar energy conversion to chemical energy. Water splitting consists of two half reactions, namely the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) and hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). OER is kinetically more challenging since it involves four electron transfer and requires an extra overpotential. There is a need and interest for the development of more effective non-noble metal based electrocatalysts for OER.
Ongoing projects in our research effort focus on the development of new synthetic methodologies for preparation of non-noble metal oxide based nanostructured electrocatalysts for OER. We use the templating approach to create well-defined mesostructured materials and utilize them as toolbox to find correlations between structural properties and catalytic performance of the materials for development of more effective catalysts for OER.
We are a member of the MAXNET Energy consortium of the Max Planck Society and DFG funded Collaborative Research Centre / Transregio 247 where we establish experimental structure–activity correlations in heterogeneous reactions including electrochemical water splitting.
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