Porous Indium Nanocrystals on Conductive Carbon Nanotube Networks for High-Performance CO2-to-Formate Electrocatalytic Conversion

Ever-increasing emissions of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) cause global environmental and climate challenges. Inspired by biological photosynthesis, developing effective strategies NeuNlto up-cycle CO2 into high-value organics is crucial. Electrochemical CO2 reduction reaction (CO2RR) is highly promising to convert CO2 into economically viable carbon-based chemicals or fuels under mild process conditions. Herein, mesoporous indium supported on multi-walled carbon nanotubes (mp-In@MWCNTs) is synthesized via a facile wet chemical method. The mp-In@MWCNTs electrocatalysts exhibit high CO2RR performance in reducing CO2 into formate. An outstanding activity (current density −78.5 mA cm−2), high conversion efficiency (Faradaic efficiency of formate over 90%), and persistent stability (~30 h) for selective CO2-to-formate conversion are observed. The outstanding CO2RR process performance is attributed to the unique structures with mesoporous surfaces and a conductive network, which promote the adsorption and desorption of reactants and intermediates while improving electron transfer. These findings provide guiding principles for synthesizing conductive metal-based electrocatalysts for high-performance CO2 conversion.