Catalyst synthesis under CO2 electroreduction favours faceting and promotes renewable fuels electrosynthesis

Yuhang Wang, Ziyun Wang, Cao Thang Dinh, Jun Li, Adnan Ozden, Md Golam Kibria, Ali Seifitokaldani, Chih-Shan Tan, Christine M. Gabardo, Mingchuan Luo, Hua Zhou, Fengwang Li, Yanwei Lum, Christopher McCallum, Yi Xu, Mengxia Liu, Andrew Proppe, Andrew Johnston, Petar Todorovic, Tao Tao ZhuangDavid Sinton, Shana O. Kelley, Edward H. Sargent*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    67 Scopus citations


    The electrosynthesis of C2+ hydrocarbons from CO2 has attracted recent attention in light of the relatively high market price per unit energy input. Today’s low selectivities and stabilities towards C2+ products at high current densities curtail system energy efficiency, which limits their prospects for economic competitiveness. Here we present a materials processing strategy based on in situ electrodeposition of copper under CO2 reduction conditions that preferentially expose and maintain Cu(100) facets, which favour the formation of C2+ products. We observe capping of facets during catalyst synthesis and achieve control over faceting to obtain a 70% increase in the ratio of Cu(100) facets to total facet area. We report a 90% Faradaic efficiency for C2+ products at a partial current density of 520 mA cm−2 and a full-cell C2+ power conversion efficiency of 37%. We achieve nearly constant C2H4 selectivity over 65 h operation at 350 mA cm−2 in a membrane electrode assembly electrolyser.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)98-106
    Number of pages9
    JournalNature Catalysis
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - Feb 2020


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