Journal of Applied Electrochemistry

, Volume 47, Issue 8, pp 905–915 | Cite as

Multiwalled carbon nanotubes twined α-nickel hydroxide microspheres as high-efficient urea electrooxidation catalysts

  • Lulu Bian
  • Tingting Du
  • Qingyang Du
  • Mulan Luo
  • Mingtao LiEmail author
Research Article
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Hydrogen production


Multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNT) twined α-Ni(OH)2 microspheres, denoted as α-Ni(OH)2@MWCNT, are synthesized by a facile solvothermal method and are developed as a remarkably active catalyst for urea electrooxidation in alkaline media. Through optimizing the mass ratio between α-Ni(OH)2 and MWCNT, it is found that α-Ni(OH)2@MWCNT catalyst with a weight ratio of 2.5:1 affords the highest current density of 2503 mA cm−2 mg−1 at the potential of 0.58 V versus Hg/HgO and the largest exchange current density of 1.49 × 10−4 mA cm−2 among all the studied catalysts, which are much higher than that of pure α-Ni(OH)2 microspheres and are about one order of magnitude higher than that of reported Ni(OH)2 nanosheets. Additionally, the α-Ni(OH)2@MWCNT catalysts also present superior durability than pure α-Ni(OH)2. The exceptional catalytic performance of α-Ni(OH)2@MWCNT catalysts is attributed to the good electronic transport of MWCNT and favorable mass transport facilitated by α-Ni(OH)2 hollow porous microspheres. These results suggest the feasibility of an easy and low-cost solvothermal method to develop high-efficient catalyst for urea electrooxidation.

Graphical Abstract

Bird-nest-like microspheres of α-Ni(OH)2@MWCNT catalyst were synthesized with MWCNT twined α-Ni(OH)2 ultrathin nanosheets by an economical solvothermal method.


Urea electrooxidation MWCNT Microspheres α-Ni(OH)2@MWCNT 



The authors are grateful for the support received from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (21303132), and the Nature Science Foundation of Shan Xi Province (2013JM2010).

Supplementary material

10800_2017_1087_MOESM1_ESM.docx (82 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 82 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lulu Bian
    • 1
  • Tingting Du
    • 1
  • Qingyang Du
    • 1
  • Mulan Luo
    • 1
  • Mingtao Li
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.School of Chemical Engineering and TechnologyXi’an Jiaotong UniversityXi’anPeople’s Republic of China

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