Nanotechnology: Emerging Opportunities for Fuel Cell Applications

  • Wai Yin WongEmail author
  • Nabila A. Karim


Fuel cell is foreseen as the future energy device that utilises electrochemical reactions to generate electricity. In fuel cell device, the main components that are responsible for the process are electrocatalyst and membrane. Nonetheless, the late introduction of this technology to the market is attributed to the high component cost, contributed by the heavy utilisation of catalysts such as platinum. Nanotechnology is thus foreseen to be one of the feasible solutions in the perspective of reducing the catalyst loading and replacement of non-Pt catalysts with other nanomaterials. This chapter focuses on the application of nanotechnology that is aligned with the few main efforts in resolving the abovementioned issue such as reducing Pt loading, developing Pt-free catalysts and metal-free catalysts. In essence, the development of nanosized catalysts takes the advantage of increasing the electrochemical active surface area per unit volume that can reduce the catalysts loading. Besides, the ability to modify the structure of the nanocatalysts is beneficial in tailoring in catalytic activity. More interestingly, carbon nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes and graphene can be modified at the atomic level to become electrochemically active catalysts to realise the introduction of metal-free catalyst. Detailed mechanisms regarding the reactions are discussed in this chapter. It is foreseen that nanotechnology will remain as the mainstream in the research on the materials related to fuel cell technology that is able to eventually resolve the technical issues.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Fuel Cell InstituteUniversiti Kebangsaan MalaysiaBangi, SelangorMalaysia

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