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Materials 2015, 8(12), 7997-8008; doi:10.3390/ma8125438

Investigation of Supported Pd-Based Electrocatalysts for the Oxygen Reduction Reaction: Performance, Durability and Methanol Tolerance

CNR-ITAE Institute, Via Salita Santa Lucia sopra Contesse, 5, Messina 98126, Italy
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Academic Editor: Federico Bella
Received: 12 October 2015 / Revised: 9 November 2015 / Accepted: 16 November 2015 / Published: 25 November 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrode Materials)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2345 KB, uploaded 25 November 2015]   |  

Abstract

Next generation cathode catalysts for direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) must have high catalytic activity for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), a lower cost than benchmark Pt catalysts, and high stability and high tolerance to permeated methanol. In this study, palladium catalysts supported on titanium suboxides (Pd/TinO2n–1) were prepared by the sulphite complex route. The aim was to improve methanol tolerance and lower the cost associated with the noble metal while enhancing the stability through the use of titanium-based support; 30% Pd/Ketjenblack (Pd/KB) and 30% Pd/Vulcan (Pd/Vul) were also synthesized for comparison, using the same methodology. The catalysts were ex-situ characterized by physico-chemical analysis and investigated for the ORR to evaluate their activity, stability, and methanol tolerance properties. The Pd/KB catalyst showed the highest activity towards the ORR in perchloric acid solution. All Pd-based catalysts showed suitable tolerance to methanol poisoning, leading to higher ORR activity than a benchmark Pt/C catalyst in the presence of low methanol concentration. Among them, the Pd/TinO2n–1 catalyst showed a very promising stability compared to carbon-supported Pd samples in an accelerated degradation test of 1000 potential cycles. These results indicate good perspectives for the application of Pd/TinO2n–1 catalysts in DMFC cathodes. View Full-Text
Keywords: direct methanol fuel cells; oxygen reduction reaction; methanol tolerance; Pd catalysts; durability tests; titanium suboxides direct methanol fuel cells; oxygen reduction reaction; methanol tolerance; Pd catalysts; durability tests; titanium suboxides
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Lo Vecchio, C.; Alegre, C.; Sebastián, D.; Stassi, A.; Aricò, A.S.; Baglio, V. Investigation of Supported Pd-Based Electrocatalysts for the Oxygen Reduction Reaction: Performance, Durability and Methanol Tolerance. Materials 2015, 8, 7997-8008.

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