Electrocatalysts can use renewable electricity (e.g. solar or wind) to convert non-edible and readily available biomass-based feedstocks (e.g. glycerol, glucose, and starch) to value-added chemicals that can replace fossil-based chemicals. The use of electrocatalysts reduces the energy input required to drive these conversions, thereby making the process less energy-intensive. However, before these electrocatalysts can be applied in the chemical industry, their performance, including their activity, selectivity, and stability, needs to be improved. The performance of these electrocatalysts can be modified by changing their physical and chemical properties.
Therefore, in this dissertation, I focus on the design of electrocatalysts and research how their physical and chemical properties can be used to improve the conversion of biomass-based feedstocks to value-added chemicals.