Porous particle superstructures of about 15 nm diameter, consisting of ultrasmall nanoparticles of iridium and iridium dioxide, are prepared through the reduction of sodium hexachloridoiridate(+IV) with sodium citrate/sodium borohydride in water. The water-dispersible porous particles contain about 20 wt % poly(N-vinylpyrrolidone) (PVP), which was added for colloidal stabilization. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy confirms the presence of both iridium and iridium dioxide primary particles (1–2 nm) in each porous superstructure. The internal porosity (≈58 vol%) is demonstrated by electron tomography. In situ transmission electron microscopy up to 1000 °C under oxygen, nitrogen, argon/hydrogen (all at 1 bar), and vacuum shows that the porous particles undergo sintering and subsequent compaction upon heating, a process that starts at around 250 °C and is completed at around 800 °C. Finally, well-crystalline iridium dioxide is obtained under all four environments. The catalytic activity of the as-prepared porous superstructures in electrochemical water splitting (oxygen evolution reaction; OER) is reduced considerably upon heating owing to sintering of the pores and loss of internal surface area.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Organic Chemistry