Atomic layer deposited Pt-Ru dual-metal dimers and identifying their active sites for hydrogen evolution reaction
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Single atom catalysts exhibit particularly high catalytic activities in contrast to regular nanomaterial-based catalysts. Until recently, research has been mostly focused on single atom catalysts, and it remains a great challenge to synthesize bimetallic dimer structures. Herein, we successfully prepare high-quality one-to-one A-B bimetallic dimer structures (Pt-Ru dimers) through an atomic layer deposition (ALD) process. The Pt-Ru dimers show much higher hydrogen evolution activity (more than 50 times) and excellent stability compared to commercial Pt/C catalysts. X-ray absorption spectroscopy indicates that the Pt-Ru dimers structure model contains one Pt-Ru bonding configuration. First principle calculations reveal that the Pt-Ru dimer generates a synergy effect by modulating the electronic structure, which results in the enhanced hydrogen evolution activity. This work paves the way for the rational design of bimetallic dimers with good activity and stability, which have a great potential to be applied in various catalytic reactions.