Stability and Activity of Cobalt Antimonate for Oxygen Reduction in Strong Acid

Lan Zhou, Hao Li, Yungchieh Lai, Matthias Richter, Kevin Kan, Joel A. Haber, Sara Kelly, Zhenbin Wang, Yubing Lu, R. Soyoung Kim, Xiang Li, Junko Yano, Jens K. Nørskov*, John M. Gregoire*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Guided by computational Pourbaix screening and high-throughput experiments aimed at the development of precious-metal-free fuel cells, we investigate rutile CoSb2O6 as an electrocatalyst for oxygen reduction in 1 M sulfuric acid. Following 4 h of catalyst conditioning at 0.7 V vs RHE, operation at this potential for 20 h yielded an average current density of -0.17 mA cm-2 with corrosion at a rate of 0.04 nm hour-1 that is stoichiometric with catalyst composition. Surface Pourbaix analysis of the (111) surface identified partial H coverage under operating conditions. The Sb active site has an HO binding free energy of 0.49 eV, which is near the peak of the kinetic 4e- ORR volcano for transition-metal oxides in acidic conditions. The experimental demonstration of operational stability and computational identification of a reaction pathway with favorable energetics place rutile CoSb2O6 among the most promising precious-metal-free electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction in acidic media.
Original languageEnglish
JournalACS Energy Letters
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)993-1000
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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