Nanoscale graphite-supported Pt catalysts for oxygen reduction reactions in fuel cells

Mei-xian Wang, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
Fan Xu, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
Hong-fang Sun, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University
Kateryna Artyushkova, University of New Mexico
Qi Liu, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
Eric A. Stach, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University
Jian Xie, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis

Date of this Version



Electrochimica Acta Volume 56, Issue 5, 1 February 2011, Pages 2566–2573


The nanoscale graphite particles were prepared and the Pt catalysts supported on such graphites were developed for oxygen reduction in the polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells. Catalytic activity and carbon corrosion of the developed catalysts were evaluated using rotating disc electrode techniques and results were compared with those of a state-of-the-art commercial E-TEK Pt catalyst supported on carbon black Vulcan XC72. The results showed that the particle distribution and the structure of the developed Pt nanoparticles supported on the nanoscale graphite were similar to those of the commercial catalyst. The accelerated degradation testing results showed that the electrochemical active surface area losses after 1500 cycles were 46.92% and 62.2% for the developed catalyst and the commercial catalyst, respectively, while mass activity losses were 45.3% and 84.2%, respectively. The temperature-programmed oxidation results suggest that the developed catalysts had better corrosion resistance than the commercial catalyst. The developed Pt catalysts had similar catalytic performance to the commercial catalyst; however, the developed catalysts had much better corrosion resistance than the commercial catalyst. Overall, nanoscale graphite can be a promising electrocatalyst support to replace the currently used Vulcan XC72 carbon black. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Nanoscience and Nanotechnology