Electro-oxidation of methanol in alkaline conditions using Pd–Ni nanoparticles prepared from organometallic precursors and supported on carbon vulcan
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Oxidation of low-molecular weight alcohols as energy sources using metal nanoparticles has attracted considerable interest for use as a power source in portable electronic devices. In this work, a series of mono- and bimetallic nanoparticles based on palladium and nickel (Pd, Pd90Ni10, Pd50Ni50, Pd10Ni90, and Ni) have been synthesized from organometallic precursors, namely tris(dibenzylideneacetone) dipalladium(0), Pd2(dba)3, and bis(1,5-cyclooctadiene)nickel(0), Ni(cod)2. Well-defined metal particles in the nanometric scale from 4.2 to 6.3 nm were observed by transmission electron microscopy. The as-prepared nanoparticles were mixed with a carbon Vulcan matrix (10 % wt. of the catalyst in turn) for investigation as electrocatalysts in methanol oxidation reaction (MOR) in alkaline conditions. The i–E profiles from cyclic voltammetry for the monometallic systems indicated a redox process attributed only to palladium or nickel, as expected. With the bimetallic nanomaterials, the redox process and the i–E characteristics are functions of the amount of nickel associated to palladium. From a fundamental point of view, it has been established that the OH ions’ interfacial interaction and the MOR kinetics are affected by the presence of nickel (decreasing the faradic current) as supported by the current versus potential profiles obtained as a function of methanol concentration and with temperature variation.
KeywordsMethanol oxidation Electrocatalysis Fuel cell Anode catalyst Colloidal catalyst precursor
The authors wish to acknowledge the financial support provided by SIP and IPN-CONACyT (projects 160333 and 157613), Universidad Iberoamericana 0053 project, SNI-CONACyT, CAPES, FAPESP, and the CNRS. The authors also thank V. Collière (UPS-TEMSCAN) for TEM analysis. The research was conducted in the framework of the “French-Mexican International Laboratory (LIA) LCMMC” and “International Cooperation Program CAPES-COFECUB (Grant 695/10).”
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