Nanocatalyst superior to pt for oxygen reduction reactions: The case of core/shell Ag(Au)/CuPd nanoparticles

Shaojun Guo, Xu Zhang, Wenlei Zhu, Kai He, Dong Su, Adriana Mendoza-Garcia, Sally Fae Ho, Gang Lu*, Shouheng Sun

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

149 Scopus citations


Controlling the electronic structure and surface strain of a nanoparticle catalyst has become an important strategy to tune and to optimize its catalytic efficiency for a chemical reaction. Using density functional theory (DFT) calculations, we predicted that core/shell M/CuPd (M = Ag, Au) NPs with a 0.8 or 1.2 nm CuPd2 shell have similar but optimal surface strain and composition and may surpass Pt in catalyzing oxygen reduction reactions. We synthesized monodisperse M/CuPd NPs by the coreduction of palladium acetylacetonate and copper acetylacetonate in the presence of Ag (or Au) nanoparticles with controlled shell thicknesses of 0.4, 0.75, and 1.1 nm and CuPd compositions and evaluated their catalysis for the oxygen reduction reaction in 0.1 M KOH solution. As predicted, our Ag/Cu37Pd63 and Au/Cu40Pd60 catalysts with 0.75 and 1.1 nm shells were more efficient catalysts than the commercial Pt catalyst (Fuel Cells Store), with their mass activity reaching 0.20 A/mg of noble metal at -0.1 V vs Ag/AgCl (4 M KCl); this was over 3 times higher than that (0.06 A/mg Pt) from the commercial Pt. These Ag(Au)/CuPd nanoparticles are promising non-Pt catalysts for oxygen reduction reactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15026-15033
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number42
StatePublished - Oct 22 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Nanocatalyst superior to pt for oxygen reduction reactions: The case of core/shell Ag(Au)/CuPd nanoparticles'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this