Synthesis and Characterization of Gold Nanoparticle/Boron Nitride Nanotube Composites Toward Hydrogen Generation Reaction

Wednesday, 4 October 2017
Prince George's Exhibit Hall D/E (Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center)
C. Huff, T. Dushatinski (Christopher Newport University), and T. M. Abdel-Fattah (Applied Research Center, Jefferson National Lab)
Hydrogen gas is praised for being an environmentally friendly and renewable alternative fuel; however, it is still energy-intensive to produce and is limited in storage due to its gaseous phase. The use of hydrogen feedstock materials (HFMs) is an attempt to address the storage problems of this fuel in which the hydrogen gas is released as needed and stored in HFMs when not being consumed. Many of these materials do not produce hydrogen at a relevant rate for energy applications without the use of a proper catalysts. Gold nanoparticles have displayed impressive catalytic activity for hydrogenation reactions and hydrogen generation reactions. AuMWCNT composites have shown a synergistic relationship where by composites outperform both individual components in these reactions. The recent growth in the field of research of Boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs) has encouraged many studies of this material, including its capabilities within nanocomposites. BNNTs have demonstrated excellent stability, but are electrically insulating materials. This indicates that the BNNTs will act much differently as a support material for Au nanoparticles as the electrical conductivity of MWCNTs provides stabilization of functionalized materials. The goal of this study is to synthesize and characterize an Au nanoparticle BNNT composite. The synthesis will mimic the technique used in previous works [1]. The produced composites will be characterized via SEM, TEM, and EDS. The materials will also be tested for catalytic activity using a previously described gravimetric water displacement system [1, 2].


  1. C. Huff, T. Dushatinski, A. Barzanji, N. Abdel-Fattah, K. Barzanji, and T. Abdel-Fattah, ECS J Solid State, 6, M69-M71 (2017).
  2. T. Dushatinski, C. Huff, and T. Abdel-Fattah, Applied Surface Science, 385, 282 (2016).