Nonmetallic Boron Phosphide is Used for High Selective Electrocatalytic Reduction of CO2 to Methanol

Boron Phosphide: What’s it all about?

Boron phosphide, also known as BP (boron phosphide), is an inorganic compound that is made up of boron phosphate and phosphorus. It’s a form of semiconductor material. Henri Morvasan (1891) synthesized the material. The sphalerite crystal structure is what it is made of.

Boronphosphide will not react to a boiling alkali or concentrated acid solution. It may, however, react with a molten basis such as sodium hydroxide if preheated. Boron-phosphate can withstand oxidation at temperatures below 1000°C. It reacts to chlorine at 500°C. At high pressure, at 2500°C the compound is stable. Over 1100°C some of its phosphorous is lost through vacuum heating. The result is B12p1.8. Its crystal structure is identical to that of the boron caride.
Because it has high resistance to high temperatures and both zinc phosphate’s anticorrosive and high colouring power, boron white powder is commonly used as a non toxic anticorrosive pigment. Excellent dispersion, high whiteness, fineness, and ability to work with all pigments make it an excellent wear-resistant coating material. Some fields also use boron-phosphide as a semiconductor material. However, boron-phosphide has many other uses. Recent scientists tried something new.

Nonmetallic Electrocatalysts For Boron Phosphide

We all know that increased fuel consumption is accelerating the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2). This is raising concern about an energy crisis, and leading to global warming. This problem can be solved by the conversion of carbon dioxide into high value carbon-based fuels, and chemical materials. Electrochemical CO2 removal (CO2RR), however, is a multi-step Electrochemical transfer. These Electrochemical reductions can produce a wide range of products. Methanol, the most valuable C1 product, has an extremely high energy density and is easily stored at atmospheric pressure. This makes it a great fuel-cell material. The University of Electronic Science and Technology of China’s Sun Xoping recently published a boron phosphide-based nanoparticle that is a nonmetallic electrocatalyst for the electrochemical conversion of CO2 to methanol. When the reduction potential of methanol was 0.5V, the Faraday Efficiency of methanol product was 92.0%. The decisive step in the reduction reaction pathway is *CO+*OH and *CO+*H2O. This Gibbs-free energy equals 1.36 eV. Additionally, the BP (111) crystal surface’s desorption barrier of CO was very high at 0.95 eV. The CH2O and CO2O corresponding Gibbs free energies were 1.36 eV. These factors are important for high selective CO2 reduction to methanol with the BP catalyst.

App Prospect

Before this invention, CO2RR catalysts could have been made from precious metals. Metal-based and metal-based metals are often used. But the former were difficult to apply in large quantities due to their high costs, while the latter ran the risk of metal ions releasing into the environment during operation. Professor Sun Xuping and his team made this possible by reducing the costs while increasing the effectiveness of the reaction. The future holds many opportunities for large-scale application.
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