Electrochemical decomposition of urea with Ni-based catalysts
Nickel based catalysts (Ni, Ni-Zn, and Ni-Zn-Co) synthesized through electrodeposition and alkaline leaching processes were used as electrocatalysts for the electrochemical decomposition of urea to benign nitrogen and fuel cell grade hydrogen. The performances of the Ni-based catalysts for the urea decomposition were investigated through cyclic voltammetry (CV) and polarization techniques. The results of the CVs show that the Ni-Zn catalysts and the Ni-Zn-Co catalysts decreased the onset potential of urea oxidation by 40 mV and 80 mV, respectively when compared to Ni catalysts. The highest efficiency for the oxidation of urea was observed with the Ni-Zn-Co catalysts. The Ni-Zn and Ni-Zn-Co catalysts are promising materials for large-scale urea removal/decomposition from urea-rich wastewater, as well as for hydrogen production.
Graphical abstractFigure optionsDownload full-size imageDownload as PowerPoint slideHighlights► Ni, Ni-Zn and Ni-Zn-Co catalysts were synthesized by electrodeposition/leaching. ► Ni-Zn and Ni-Zn-Co catalysts enhanced urea electrochemical decomposition. ► Ni-Zn-Co catalysts provide efficiencies above 80% for urea electrolysis.
Journal: Applied Catalysis B: Environmental - Volume 127, 30 October 2012, Pages 221–226