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Open AccessArticle

Carbon-Supported Copper-Based Nitrogen-Containing Supramolecule as an Efficient Oxygen Reduction Reaction Catalyst in Neutral Medium

Department of Chemistry, Liaocheng University, Liaocheng 252059, China
Dongchang College, Liaocheng University, Liaocheng 252059, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Catalysts 2018, 8(2), 53;
Received: 19 December 2017 / Revised: 23 January 2018 / Accepted: 26 January 2018 / Published: 30 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Platinum-Free Electrocatalysts)
PDF [4513 KB, uploaded 30 January 2018]


In this work, a nitrogen-containing bidentate ligand named 5,5′-(9-octyl-9H-carbazole-2,7-diyl)bis(1,10-phenanthroline) (OCBP) was synthesized as a nitrogen precursor for making an oxygen reduction catalyst. The 1,10-phenanthroline unit provides a coordination site for copper ions, and the resulting Cu-Nx unit may be responsible for the catalytic activities of the catalyst. Carbon black was selected as a support to improve the electroconductibility of the resulting catalyst. The metallo-supramolecule (Cu-SOCBP) was dispersed on the surface of Vulcan XC-72 carbon and was used as a catalyst (designated as Cu-SOCBP/C) for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). The microscope structure and surface components of the catalyst were acquired via scanning electron microscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, as well as X-ray powder diffraction. The electrochemical property and ORR mechanism of Cu-SOCBP/C were analyzed using a variety of electroanalytical methods including cyclic voltammetry, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, and linear sweep voltammetry. These results show that Cu-SOCBP/C was successfully synthesized and that ORR was achieved mainly via a four-electron transfer process to water. Thus, Cu-SOCBP/C was an effective catalyst and might have potential application as a cathodic catalyst in microbial fuel cells, which operate in an aqueous medium. View Full-Text
Keywords: supramolecule; ORR activity; kinetics study supramolecule; ORR activity; kinetics study

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Zhao, Y.; Chu, Y.; Ju, X.; Zhao, J.; Kong, L.; Zhang, Y. Carbon-Supported Copper-Based Nitrogen-Containing Supramolecule as an Efficient Oxygen Reduction Reaction Catalyst in Neutral Medium. Catalysts 2018, 8, 53.

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