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Scanning Electrochemical Flow Cell with Online Mass Spectroscopy for Accelerated Screening of Carbon Dioxide Reduction Electrocatalysts

  • Yungchieh Lai
    Yungchieh Lai
    Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, United States
  • Ryan J. R. Jones
    Ryan J. R. Jones
    Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, United States
  • Yu Wang
    Yu Wang
    Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, United States
    More by Yu Wang
  • Lan Zhou
    Lan Zhou
    Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, United States
    More by Lan Zhou
  • , and 
  • John M. Gregoire*
    John M. Gregoire
    Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, United States
    Division of Engineering and Applied Science, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, United States
    *E-mail: [email protected]
Cite this: ACS Comb. Sci. 2019, 21, 10, 692–704
Publication Date (Web):September 16, 2019
https://doi.org/10.1021/acscombsci.9b00130
Copyright © 2019 American Chemical Society

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    Abstract

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    Electrochemical conversion of carbon dioxide into valuable chemicals or fuels is an increasingly important strategy for achieving carbon neutral technologies. The lack of a sufficiently active and selective electrocatalyst, particularly for synthesizing highly reduced products, motivates accelerated screening to evaluate new catalyst spaces. Traditional techniques, which couple electrocatalyst operation with analytical techniques to measure product distributions, enable screening throughput at 1–10 catalysts per day. In this paper, a combinatorial screening instrument is designed for MS detection of hydrogen, methane, and ethylene in quasi-real-time during catalyst operation experiments in an electrochemical flow cell. Coupled with experiment modeling, product detection during cyclic voltammetry (CV) enables modeling of the voltage-dependent partial current density for each detected product. We demonstrate the technique by using the well-established thin film Cu catalysts and by screening a Pd–Zn composition library in carbonate-buffered aqueous electrolyte. The rapid product distribution characterization over a large range of overpotential makes the instrument uniquely suited for accelerating screening of electrocatalysts for the carbon dioxide reduction reaction.

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    Cited By

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