Comparison of Electrocatalytic Properties of PtCo/Graphene Catalysts for Ethanol, Methanol and Borohydride Oxidation

Wednesday, October 14, 2015: 08:00
212-A (Phoenix Convention Center)
V. Kepeniene, L. Tamasauskaite-Tamasiunaite, K. Antanaviciute, A. Balciunaite (Center for Physical Sciences and Technology), and E. Norkus (Center for Physical Sciences and Technology)
In this study the graphene supported PtCocatalysts (denoted as PtCo/GR) with diferent molar ratios of Pt and Co were fabricated by means of the rapid microwave heating method with the aim to use them in an alkaline fuel cells, using ethanol, methanol and borohydride as fuel.The synthesized catalysts were examined by Transmission Electron Microscopy, X-ray Ddiffraction and Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectroscopy. The electrochemically active surface areas of the prepared catalysts were determined from the cyclic voltammograms of the different PtCo/GR catalysts recorded in a deaerated 0.5 M H2SO4 solution at a sweep rate of 50 mV s–1 by calculating the charge associated with the hydrogen adsorption (220 µg cm-2). The electrocatalytic activitiy of the synthesized catalysts was investigated towards the oxidation of ethanol, methanol and borohydride in an alkaline medium by means of cyclic voltammetry and chronoamperometry.

It was found that the PtCo/GR catalysts with an average particle size of ca. 1-3 nm were synthesized by means of microwave heating of Pt(IV) and Co(II) salts in ethylene glycol solutions. The synthesized PtCo/GRcatalysts with the different Pt:Co molar ratios show an enhanced activity towards the oxidation of H2 generated by catalytic hydrolysis of BH4 and direct oxidation of BH4 ions as well as methanol and ethanol oxidation as compared with that at the graphene supported bare Co and Pt catalysts. It should be noted that the electrocatalytic activity of the PtCo/GR catalysts depends on the molar ratio of Pt:Co in the catalysts and type of fuel.