A sustainable future requires highly efficient energy conversion and storage processes, where electrocatalysis plays a crucial role. The activity of an electrocatalyst is governed by the binding energy towards the reaction intermediates, while the scaling relationships prevent the improvement of a catalytic system over its volcano-plot limits. To overcome these limitations, unconventional methods that are not fully determined by the surface binding energy can be helpful. Here, we use organic chiral molecules, i.e., hetero-helicenes, to boost the oxygen evolution reaction (OER) by ca. 131.5 % (at the potential of 1.65 V vs. RHE) at state-of-the-art 2D catalysts via a spin-polarization mechanism. Our results show that chiral molecule-functionalization is able to increase the OER activity of catalysts beyond the volcano limits. A guideline for optimizing the catalytic activity via chiral molecular functionalization of hybrid 2D electrodes is given.
Supplementary information: Enhancement of Electrocatalytic Oxygen Evolution by Chiral Molecular Functionalization of Hybrid 2D Electrodes