Ga doping disrupts C-C coupling and promotes methane electroproduction on CuAl catalysts

Armin Sedighian Rasouli, Xue Wang, Joshua Wicks, Cao Thang Dinh, Jehad Abed, Feng Yi Wu, Sung Fu Hung, Koen Bertens, Jianan Erick Huang, Edward H. Sargent*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The electrochemical CO2 reduction reaction (CO2RR) provides a route to store intermittent electricity in the form of fuels like methane. We reasoned that disrupting C-C coupling while maintaining high ∗CO coverage could enhance methane selectivity and suppress the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). We studied the effect of doping CuAl, a material at the top of the CO2RR activity and selectivity volcano plot, with elements having low ∗CO binding energies: Au, Zn, and Ga. Encouraged by initial improvements in selectivity to methane, we optimized the Ga content and showed that the presence of uniformly dispersed Ga is crucial in CO2RR-to-methane performance enhancement. We rule out porosity and roughness and conclude that the presence of Ga in the doped catalysts enables high methane selectivity. The Ga-doped CuAl catalysts achieve a methane Faradaic efficiency (FE) of 53% by suppressing HER to 23% in neutral electrolyte at −1.4 V versus reversible hydrogen electrode.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)908-916
Number of pages9
JournalChem Catalysis
Issue number4
StatePublished - 21 Apr 2022


  • Cu-based ternary catalysts
  • electrochemical CO reduction reaction
  • flow cells
  • methane
  • SDG13: Climate action
  • SDG7: Affordable and clean energy


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