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Vanadium (V)-doped nickel phosphide supported on nitrides on nickel foam (Ni1V1P NSs/NF) has been recently synthesized as a non-precious metal catalyst for oxygen evolution reaction (OER). This material is stable in the wide range of its oxidation state V, from V2+ to V5+, and offers high energy density thanks to reversible multi-electron exchange.
To achieve the desired performance, it is necessary to design a new type of material, especially in terms of its structure and crystallographic properties. The phosphates of the formula (NH4)(VO2)(HPO4) are promising candidates as they display strong inductive effects due to their polyanion nature, and have an extreme versatility for cation substitution in a given structure.
However, they suffer from a limited cycling stability and, in addition, their crystallographic structure has to be optimized.
Among these materials, the vanadium phosphide formula is particularly interesting. In fact, this compound can be used as cathode or anode in Alkali-ion batteries due to its large working potential and multi-electron redox couple.
The synthesis of this material is simple, involving the calcination of a melange of V2O5 and NH4H2PO4 at 800 °C for 3 h to obtain VPO 4 with good phasic purity. The mixture can be slurried or subjected to reactive grinding and is then calcined again under an Ar/H2 atmosphere at 800 °C for another 3 h in order to obtain the final VPO 4. This material shows excellent electrocatalytic activity with respect to hydrogen oxidation, with a current density up to 50 mA cm-2 in 1.0 M KOH.