Topics in Catalysis

, Volume 61, Issue 1–2, pp 126–135 | Cite as

Size-Effect on Electrochemical Hydrogen Evolution Reaction by Single-Size Platinum Nanocluster Catalysts Immobilized on Strontium Titanate

  • Hironori Tsunoyama
  • Yohei Yamano
  • Chuhang Zhang
  • Masafumi Komori
  • Toyoaki Eguchi
  • Atsushi Nakajima
Original Paper


Size-specific chemical properties of metal nanoclusters (NCs) have motivated their applications in catalysis, whose properties were found to be dramatically different from bulk materials. We have reported herein the size-dependent activity of platinum (Pt) NCs for the electrochemical hydrogen-evolution-reaction (HER) in neutral water. The single-size NC catalysts were prepared by the soft-landing of mass-selected Pt NCs on a strontium titanate (SrTiO3) (100) surface using an intensive, size-selective NC source based on high-power impulse magnetron sputtering. Successful fabrications of single-size Pt NC catalysts were confirmed with scanning tunneling microscopy. It was found from electrochemical measurements that catalytic HER activity per unit Pt shows a maximum at Pt30 in the range of n = 1–45. Taking into account the electron affinities of Pt NCs measured by gas-phase anion photoelectron spectroscopy, the reaction mechanism of HER is deduced: the size-specific HER activity originates from the matching of energy levels of Pt NCs with the band structure of SrTiO3 surfaces.


Hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) Nanocluster catalyst Magnetron sputtering Size-selected nanocluster Electrochemistry 



The work is partly supported by JSPS KAKENHI of Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (A) grant no. 15H02002 and for Young Scientists (A) Grant No. 15H05475, and by JSPS KAKENHI of Challenging Research (Pioneering) Grant No. 17H06226.

Supplementary material

11244_2018_884_MOESM1_ESM.docx (789 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 789 KB)


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science and TechnologyKeio UniversityKohoku-ku, YokohamaJapan
  2. 2.Nakajima Designer Nanocluster Assembly Project, Exploratory Research for Advanced Technology (ERATO)Japan Science and Technology AgencySakado, KawasakiJapan
  3. 3.Keio Institute of Pure and Applied Sciences (KiPAS)Keio UniversityKohoku-ku, YokohamaJapan
  4. 4.School of ScienceZhejiang University of Science and TechnologyHangzhouPeople’s Republic of China
  5. 5.Department of Physics, Graduate School of ScienceTohoku UniversityAoba-ku, SendaiJapan

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