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Platinum and platinum-ruthenium based catalysts on various carbon supports prepared by different methods for pem fuel cell application

Bayrakçeken, Ayşe
Proton exchange membrane fuel cells are one of the most promising hydrogen energy conversion devices for portable, mobile and stationary applications. For wide spread usage to produce electricity platinum loading has to be decreased by using highly active electrocatalysts. Even 10 ppm carbon monoxide or higher than 30% carbon dioxide cause performance losses via deactivation which can be diminished by using binary catalysts. The aim of this thesis is to develop new platinum based electrocatalysts with high catalytic activity and to overcome the problems due to the deactivation. platinum and platinum-ruthenium based catalysts on different carbon supports have been prepared by supercritical carbon dioxide deposition and microwave irradiation methods. By using supercritical carbon dioxide deposition platinum on Vulcan XC72R (VXR), multi wall carbon nanotube (MWCNT) and Black Pearl 2000 (BP2000) catalysts were prepared and characterized by XRD, TEM and cyclic voltammetry (CV). XRD results showed that in catalysts prepared by using supercritical carbon dioxide deposition method, the particle sizes as low as 1-2 nm can be obtained. From the CV results the electrochemical surface areas obtained were Platinum/VXR>Platinum/MWCNT>PlatinumBP2000. By means of the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), the number of electrons transferred per oxygen molecule was calculated as 3.5, 3.6 and 3.7 for Platinum/BP2000, Platinum/VXR and Platinum/MWCNT, respectively. The microwave irradiation was used to prepare platinum on VX, Regal and BP2000 and platinum-ruthenium on VX. The effects of microwave duration, base concentration, carbon support used and surfactant/precursor ratios were investigated. The particle sizes of the catalysts were ranging between 2-6 nm. The prepared catalysts were characterized by XRD, XPS, and then PEMFC tests were performed. The performance was ordered as Platinum/VX>Platinum/Regal>Platinum/BP2000. The power losses arising from carbon dioxide in hydrogen feed were decreased by using prepared platinum-ruthenium based catalysts.