A porous proton-relaying metal-organic framework material that accelerates electrochemical hydrogen evolution

Idan Hod, Pravas Deria, Wojciech Bury, Joseph E. Mondloch, Chung Wei Kung, Monica So, Matthew D. Sampson, Aaron W. Peters, Cliff P. Kubiak, Omar K. Farha, Joseph T. Hupp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

226 Scopus citations


The availability of efficient hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) catalysts is of high importance for solar fuel technologies aimed at reducing future carbon emissions. Even though Pt electrodes are excellent HER electrocatalysts, commercialization of large-scale hydrogen production technology requires finding an equally efficient, low-cost, earth-abundant alternative. Here, high porosity, metal-organic framework (MOF) films have been used as scaffolds for the deposition of a Ni-S electrocatalyst. Compared with an MOF-free Ni-S, the resulting hybrid materials exhibit significantly enhanced performance for HER from aqueous acid, decreasing the kinetic overpotential by more than 200 mV at a benchmark current density of 10 mA cm-2. Although the initial aim was to improve electrocatalytic activity by greatly boosting the active area of the Ni-S catalyst, the performance enhancements instead were found to arise primarily from the ability of the proton-conductive MOF to favourably modify the immediate chemical environment of the sulfide-based catalyst.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8304
JournalNature Communications
StatePublished - 14 Sep 2015
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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