Electrochemical acetate production from high-pressure gaseous and liquid CO2

Jiachen Li, Yun Kuang, Xiao Zhang, Wei Hsuan Hung, Ching Yu Chiang, Guanzhou Zhu, Gan Chen, Feifei Wang, Peng Liang, Hongjie Dai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Electroreduction of CO2 (CO2RR) to high-value chemicals is important to environmental and energy landscapes, with one of the challenges being direct and efficient acetate production. Here we demonstrate a Cu(OH)2-derived Cu/CuOx catalyst that achieves 87% Faradaic efficiency for the CO2RR to acetate in KOH electrolytes with borate additives under 58 atm CO2(g). Dynamic electrolytic speciation reveals high and low concentrations of dissolved CO2(aq) and proton donor HCO3, respectively, as the key to acetate. In situ Raman spectroscopy suggests that the oxygen-bound bidentate intermediate *OCO* formed as the acetate precursor on Cu(I) under high pressures. Introducing CO2(l) to the interface between CO2(g) and the electrolyte by melting CO2(s) further increases [CO2(aq)] and boosts the acetate partial current density to 86 mA cm2 with 71% Faradaic efficiency. A Cu2+ cross-linked alginate coating layer on the cathode surface drastically enhances the durability of Cu/CuOx catalyst over a 20 h reaction, affording a potassium acetate yield of 30 mg h−1 cm−2 directly from the CO2RR. [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1151-1163
Number of pages13
JournalNature Catalysis
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2023


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