There are wide interests in developing high-performance electrode materials for electrochemical energy storage and conversion devices. Among them, transition metal nitrides (TMNs) are suitable for a wide range of devices because they have better electrical conductivity than the oxides and excellent catalytic properties. In particular, properly designed nanostructured TMNs offer additional advantages for performance enhancement. However, reviews of the rapid utilization of metal nitrides as electrode materials are still not much. In this mini-review, we present a recent (mostly since 2015) update on nanostructured TMNs as high-performance electrode materials for energy storage devices and water splitting; we discussed how a judicious nanostructure design will lead to improving performance in lithium ion battery, supercapacitor and Li-ion capacitor, as well as in electrochemical water splitting (oxygen and hydrogen evolution reactions). Knowledge about this review on metal nitrides is aimed at sharing a wide view in recent TMNs synthetic development, applications, prospects and challenges.

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DOI: 10.1016/j.mattod.2017.03.019