Journal of Applied Electrochemistry

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 21–26

Feasibility of using PtFe alloys as cathodes in direct methanol fuel cells


DOI: 10.1007/s10800-006-9224-x

Cite this article as:
Scott, K., Yuan, W. & Cheng, H. J Appl Electrochem (2007) 37: 21. doi:10.1007/s10800-006-9224-x


Carbon-supported platinum–iron catalysts were fabricated and characterised by means of scanning electron microscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray system and X-ray diffraction. The catalysts were tested in electrochemical half cells for oxygen reduction using voltammetry and steady-state polarisation measurements and in direct methanol fuel cells. Use of PtFe/C cathodes, instead of a Pt/C cathode, partially suppressed methanol oxidation and led to higher net oxygen reduction currents in the presence of methanol. Consequently, an increase in power density up to 30% was achieved in direct methanol fuel cells with PtFe/C cathodes, compared to that with Pt/C cathode. The influence of alloy composition and operation conditions on the cell performance has been investigated.


direct methanol fuel cellPt alloy catalystsoxygen reductionmethanol crossover

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Chemical Engineering & Advanced MaterialsUniversity of Newcastle upon TyneNewcastle upon TyneUK