Platinum and Platinum Group Metal-Free Catalysts for Anion Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionEnergies. 2020, 13 (3), . 10.3390/en13030582
The development of active hydrogen oxidation reaction (HOR) and oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) catalysts for use in anion exchange membrane fuel cells (AEMFCs), which are free from platinum group metals (PGMs), is expected to bring this technology one step closer to commercial applications. This paper reports our recent progress developing HOR Pt-free and PGM-free catalysts (Pd/CeO2 and NiCo/C, respectively), and ORR PGM-free Co3O4 for AEMFCs. The catalysts were prepared by different synthesis techniques and characterized by both physical-chemical and electrochemical methods. A hydrothermally synthesized Co3O4 + C composite ORR catalyst used in combination with Pt/C as HOR catalyst shows good H2/O2 AEMFC performance (peak power density of ~388 mW cm−2 ), while the same catalyst coupled with our flame spray pyrolysis synthesised Pd/CeO2 anode catalysts reaches peak power densities of ~309 mW cm−2 . Changing the anode to nanostructured NiCo/C catalyst, the performance is significantly reduced. This study confirms previous conclusions, that is indeed possible to develop high performing AEMFCs free from Pt; however, the challenge to achieve completely PGM-free AEMFCs still remains.