Non-platinum group metal (non-PGM) electrocatalysts for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) are generally composed of iron, nitrogen, and carbon synthesized through high-temperature pyrolysis. Among the various types of precursors, metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), zeolitic imidazolate framework (ZIF)-8 in particular, have often been used in the synthesis. The pyrolysis of ZIF-8 precursor relies on the use of Zn as a sacrificial metal (SM), and the optimal processing temperatures often exceed 1000 °C to generate active non-PGM catalysts. The high pyrolysis temperature tends to result in heterogeneous active moieties ranging from Fe single atoms to nanoparticles. In this study, we present the synthesis of non-PGM catalysts using Cd as the sacrificial metal instead of Zn. By using Cd, we were able to generate active non-PGM electrocatalysts from the MOF precursors at a low pyrolysis temperature of 750 °C, which helps preserve the single atomic iron active sites.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry