Facile synthesis of amorphous nickel iron borate grown on carbon paper as stable electrode materials for promoted electrocatalytic urea oxidation

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The development of greatly stable and cost-effective electrocatalysts for urea electro-oxidation reactions (UERs) is urgent and challenging for promoting urea removal in the wastewater and advanced energy conversion devices. We demonstrated that nickel-iron borate (NiFe-B) electrocatalysts supported on carbon paper (CP) for UERs through a one-pot solvothermal method. NiFe-B electrocatalysts were obtained with numerous Ni/Fe molar ratios in the precursors, and the physicochemical features of the NiFe-B were examined by X-ray diffraction, scanning and transmission electron microscope, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The optimized NiFe-B/CP exhibited a low onset potential (Eonset = 0.287 V vs. SCE) with a Tafel slope of 27.9 mV/dec on CP, demonstrating much greater performance UERs. Furthermore, the NiFe-B/CP catalysts have shown a superior activity for the UERs in alkaline solution and exhibit more than two-fold enhancement in activity than Ni-B. Facile, cost-effective fabrication and highly efficient urea oxidation create the NiFe-B electrodes as attractive materials for UERs.