Electrochemical decomposition of urea with Ni-based catalysts

Wei Yan, Dan Wang, Gerardine G. Botte

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228 Scopus citations


Nickel based catalysts (Ni, Ni-Zn, and Ni-Zn-Co) synthesized through electrodeposition and alkaline leaching processes were used as electrocatalysts for the electrochemical decomposition of urea to benign nitrogen and fuel cell grade hydrogen. The performances of the Ni-based catalysts for the urea decomposition were investigated through cyclic voltammetry (CV) and polarization techniques. The results of the CVs show that the Ni-Zn catalysts and the Ni-Zn-Co catalysts decreased the onset potential of urea oxidation by 40. mV and 80. mV, respectively when compared to Ni catalysts. The highest efficiency for the oxidation of urea was observed with the Ni-Zn-Co catalysts. The Ni-Zn and Ni-Zn-Co catalysts are promising materials for large-scale urea removal/decomposition from urea-rich wastewater, as well as for hydrogen production.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)221-226
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Catalysis B: Environmental
StatePublished - Oct 30 2012


  • Environmental pollutants
  • Hydrogen production
  • Ni-Zn and Ni-Zn-Co catalysts
  • Urea removal/decomposition
  • Urea-rich wastewater


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