Doped Graphene as Non-Metallic Catalyst for Fuel Cells
Aiming a commercial development of proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFC), a low cost, sustainable and high performance electrocatalyst for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) with capability to replace/reduce rare metals, are high desirable. In this paper, we present a class of doped graphene, namely iodinated graphene with highly ORR electrochemical performances, synthesized by using the electrophilic substitution method. The prepared samples were characterized by different techniques, including Scanning Electron Microscopy SEM, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy XPS, Raman spectroscopy, surface area measurement by BET method, that revealed the structure and morphology. The most highly iodinated graphene was tested in a single cell by measuring the cyclic voltammetry. The electrochemical performances were evaluated and compared with a typical PEMFC configuration, when a single cathodic peak at 0.2 V with a current density of – 3.67 mA cm-2 for the Pt/C electrode was obtained. The best electrochemical performances in terms of electrochemical active area, was obtained for a new concept of cathode composed from Pt/C – iodine doped graphene, when a well-defined peak centred at 0.23 V with a current density of approx. – 9.1 mA cm-2 was obtained, indicating a high catalytic activity for ORR.
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