Effects of particle size and edge structure on the electronic structure, spectroscopic features, and chemical properties of Au(111)-supported MoS2 nanoparticles

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Materials based on MoS2 are widely used as catalysts and their structure usually consists of single-layered MoS2 nanoparticles whose edges are known to constitute the catalytically active sites. Methods based on density functional theory are used in this work to calculate the electronic structure of representative computational models of MoS2 nanoparticles supported on Au(111). By considering nanoparticles with different edge-terminations, compositions, and sizes, we describe how the electronic structure, Mo3d core-level shifts, and chemical properties (i.e. H adsorption and S vacancy formation) depend on the MoS2 nanoparticle size and structure. In addition, site-specific properties, largely inaccessible when using only slab models of MoS2 edges, are reported, which reveal that the edge sites are not uniform along the nanoparticle and largely depend on the proximity to the corners of the triangular NPs, especially when interacting with a metallic support. Furthermore, a structural motif where H atoms adsorb favourably in a bridging position between two Mo atoms is proposed as an active site for the hydrogen evolution reaction.

Original languageEnglish
JournalFaraday Discussions
Pages (from-to)323-343
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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