Enhancement of electrocatalytic abilities toward CO2reduction by tethering redox-active metal complexes to the active site

Habib Md. Ahsan, Brian K. Breedlove, Goulven Cosquer, Masahiro Yamashita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tethering metal complexes, like [Ru(bpy)2Cl2] (bpy = 2,2′-bipyridine), which are redox-active at low reduction potentials and have the ability to transfer electrons to another complex, to a [Ni(cyclen)]2+electrocatalyst enhanced the reduction of CO2to CO at low overpotentials. The [Ni(cyclen)]2+electrocatalyst was modified by tethering redox-active metal complexesvia4-methylpyridyl linkers. The redox-active metal complexes were reduced after CO2bound to the active site. In controlled potential electrolysis (CPE) experiments in 95 : 5 (v/v) CH3CN/H2O, [{([Ru]pic)4cyclen}NiCl]5+([Ru]+= {Ru(bpy)2Cl}+; pic = 4-methylpyridyl) could be used to reduce CO2into CO at a turnover frequency (TOF) of 708 s−1with a faradaic efficiency (FE) of 80% at an onset potential of −1.60 Vvs. NHE. At the same time, this electrocatalyst was active at an onset potential of −1.25 Vvs. NHE, which is the reduction potential of one of the bpy ligands of the [Ru]+moieties, with FE = 84% and TOF = 178 s−1. When the electrocatalysis was performed using [bn4cyclenNiCl]Cl (bn = benzyl) without tethered redox-active metal complexes, the TOF value was determined to be 8 s−1with FE = 77% at an onset potential of −1.45 Vvs. NHE. The results show that tethering redox-active metal complexes significantly improves the electrocatalytic activities by lowering the potential needed to reduce CO2

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13368-13373
Number of pages6
JournalDalton Transactions
Issue number38
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Oct 14

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Inorganic Chemistry


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