A Study on the Catalytic Activity of Noble Metal Nanoparticles on Reduced Graphene Oxide for Oxygen Evolution Reactions in Lithium-Air Batteries

Wednesday, 27 May 2015
Salon C (Hilton Chicago)
Y. S. Jeong (Hanyang University), H. G. Jung (Korea University of Science and Technology), J. B. Park, J. Kim (Hanyang University), J. Lu, K. Amine (Argonne National Laboratory), Y. K. Sun (Hanyang University), B. Scrosati (Helmholtz Institute Ulm, HIU, Ulm Germany, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova, Italy), and Y. J. Lee (Hanyang University)
Among many challenges present in Li-air batteries, one of the main reasons of low efficiency is the high charge overpotential due to the slow oxygen evolution reaction (OER). Here we present systematic evaluation of Pt, Pd, and Ru nanoparticles supported on rGO as OER electrocatalysts in Li-air cell cathodes with LiCF3SO3-TEGDME salt-electrolyte system. All of the noble metals explored could lower the charge overpotentials, and among them, Ru-rGO hybrids exhibited the most stable cycling performance and the lowest charge overpotentials. Role of Ru nanoparticles in boosting oxidation kinetics of the discharge products were investigated. Apparent behavior of Ru nanoparticles was different from the conventional electrocatalysts that lower activation barrier through electron transfer, since the major contribution of Ru nanoparticles in lowering charge overpotential is to control the nature of the discharge products. Ru nanoparticles facilitated thin film-like or nanoparticulate Li2O2 formation during oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), which decomposes at lower potentials during charge, although the conventional role as electrocatalysts during OER cannot be ruled out. Pt-and Pd-rGO hybrids showed fluctuating potential profiles during the cycling. While Pt- and Pd-rGO decomposed the electrolyte after electrochemical cycling, no electrolyte instability was observed with Ru-rGO hybrids. This study provides the possibility of screening selective electrocatalysts for Li-air cells while maintaining electrolyte stability.