Nitrogen-Doped Porous Carbon Derived from Biomass Used as Trifunctional Electrocatalyst toward Oxygen Reduction, Oxygen Evolution and Hydrogen Evolution Reactions

Chinnusamy Sathiskumar, Shanmugam Ramakrishnan, Vinothkannan Mohanraj, Ae Rhan Kim, Srinivasan Karthikeyan, Dong Jin Yoo

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Tremendous developments in energy storage and conversion technologies urges researchers to develop inexpensive, greatly efficient, durable and metal-free electrocatalysts for tri-functional electrochemical reactions, namely oxygen reduction reactions (ORRs), oxygen evolution reactions (OERs) and hydrogen evolution reactions (HERs). In these regards, this present study focuses upon the synthesis of porous carbon (PC) or N-doped porous carbon (N-PC) acquired from golden shower pods biomass (GSB) via solvent-free synthesis. Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) studies confirmed the doping of nitrogen in N-PC. In addition, morphological analysis via field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) provide evidence of the sheet-like porous structure of N-PC. ORR results from N-PC show the four-electron pathway (average n = 3.6) for ORRs with a Tafel slope of 86 mV dec−1 and a half-wave potential of 0.76 V. For OERs and HERs, N-PC@Ni shows better overpotential values of 314 and 179 mV at 10 mA cm−2, and its corresponding Tafel slopes are 132 and 98 mV dec−1, respectively. The chronopotentiometry curve of N-PC@Ni reveals better stability toward OER and HER at 50 mA cm−2 for 8 h. These consequences provide new pathways to fabricate efficient electrocatalysts of metal-free heteroatom-doped porous carbon from bio-waste/biomass for energy application in water splitting and metal air batteries.
Original languageEnglish
Article number76
Number of pages16
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (


This paper was supported by the research funds of Jeonbuk National University, Republic of Korea in 2019. This work was supported by the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP) and the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy (MOTIE) of the Republic of Korea (No. 20184030202210). This work was financially supported by grants from the Medical Research Center Program (NRF-2017R1A5A2015061) through the National Research Foundation (NRF), which is funded by the South Korean government (MSIP).


  • golden shower pods biomass
  • N-doped porous carbon
  • oxygen reduction reaction
  • oxygen evolution reaction
  • hydrogen evolution reaction


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