Masters Theses

Keywords and Phrases

Alkaline Conditions; Borides; Electrocatalyst; Overpotential; Oxygen Evolution Reaction; Reduced Graphene Oxide


"Electrocatalytic water splitting is a promising solution for sustainable energy generation since one of the half reactions lead to the formation of H2 which is a clean fuel. The other half of the reaction leading to O2 evolution is an energy intensive process necessitating the need for an electrocatalyst to break the activation barrier for the commencement of the reaction. In this work we will focus on expanding the family of non-oxidic OER electro-catalysts, especially borides, whereby, apart from facilitating delocalization of electron cloud on the catalytically active transition metal site, low anion electronegativity and increased covalency in the lattice compared to oxides, is expected to facilitate the catalytic process. Analyzing these properties, amorphous nickel boride (Ni3B) was chosen and synthesized through a room temperature chemical conversion technique. Characterization of the synthesized material confirmed that the as-prepared Ni3B was nanocrystalline with particles in the range of 50 - 60nm. Ni3B showed high efficiency for electrocatalytic O2 evolution under alkaline conditions exhibiting a low onset potential and overpotential (s) of 340 mV @ 10 mAcm-2. Ni3B was further incorporated into a matrix of reduced graphene oxide to improve the catalytic performance by facilitating charge transfer within the catalytic matrix since its incorporation increases conductivity of the catalytic film. As expected, Ni3B-reduced graphene oxide nanocomposite showed an improved catalytic performance compared to Ni3B nanostructures with onset potential lower by 70mV and ɳ of 290 mV @ 10mAcm-2. The OER catalytic performance obtained with Ni3B and nanocomposite was observed to be significantly better than the conventionally used noble metal oxides such as RuOx, and was comparable to some of the best OER electrocatalysts"--Abstract, page iv.


Nath, Manashi

Committee Member(s)

Fahrenholtz, William
Dogan, Fatih


Materials Science and Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Materials Science and Engineering


Petroleum Research Fund


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Spring 2018

Journal article titles appearing in thesis/dissertation

  • Facile synthesis of Ni3B/rGO nanocomposite as an efficient electrocatalyst for oxygen evolution reaction in alkaline media


xi, 83 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references.


© 2018 Maalavan Arivu, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Thesis Number

T 11264

Electronic OCLC #