Electrocatalysis enabled transformation of earth-abundant water, nitrogen and carbon dioxide for a sustainable future

Kaili Liu, Pengfei Cao, Wei Chen, Collins I. Ezeh, Zijian Chen, Yonglan Luo, Qian Liu, Haitao Zhao, Zhenhua Rui, Shuyan Gao, Zongyou Yin, Xuping Sun, Xuefeng Yu

Research output: Journal PublicationReview articlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


The integration of electrochemistry with catalyst systems underscores a major sustainable scheme for the production of fossil-free fuels and valuable chemicals. This undertaking necessitates the need for rational design of electrocatalysts with high catalytic activity, selectivity, and stability for electrochemical conversion. Significant progress has been made in this regard considering the importance of the products in these reaction systems. Hence, this review presents an update of both experimental and theoretical investigations that can offer insights into the design of high-performance electrocatalysts to facilitate the electrochemical conversion of H2O, N2 and CO2 into value added products. We analyse the current status of available electrocatalysts based on a standard set of figures of merit, namely yield rate, faradaic efficiency, overpotential, current density and stability. Then, we constructively compare the different electrocatalysts based on their reaction mechanisms and operation performances by evaluating the catalyst construction, electrolyte utilization and device practicality. Finally, we provide challenges and prospects from the aspects of both theoretical and experimental insights as a general guide to offer potential future directions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1359-1400
Number of pages42
JournalMaterials Advances
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 7 Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry (miscellaneous)
  • General Materials Science


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