Nav: Home

New catalysts for better fuel cells

January 08, 2019

Researchers at Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science & Technology (DGIST) have developed nano-catalysts that can reduce the overall cost of clean energy fuel cells, according to a study published in the journal of Applied Catalysis B: Environmental.

Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) transform the chemical energy produced during a reaction between hydrogen fuel and oxygen into electrical energy. While PEMFCs are a promising source of clean energy that is self-contained and mobile - much like the alkaline fuel cells used on the US Space Shuttle - they currently rely on expensive materials. Also, the substances used for catalysing these chemical reactions degrade, raising concerns about reusability and viability.

DGIST energy materials scientist Sangaraju Shanmugam and his team have developed active and durable catalysts for PEMFCs that can reduce the overall manufacturing costs. The catalysts were nitrogen-doped carbon nanorods with ceria and cobalt nanoparticles on their surfaces; essentially carbon nanorods containing nitrogen, cobalt and ceria. Ceria (CeO2), a combination of cerium and oxygen, is a cheap and environmentally friendly semiconducting material that has excellent oxygen reduction abilities.

The fibres were made using a technique known as electrospinning, in which a high voltage is applied to a liquid droplet, forming a charged liquid jet that then dries midflight into uniform, nanosized particles. The researchers' analyses confirmed that the ceria and cobalt particles were uniformly distributed in the carbon nanorods and that the catalysts showed enhanced electricity-producing capacity.

The ceria-supported cobalt on nitrogen-doped carbon nanorod catalyst was found to be more active and durable than cobalt-only nitrogen-doped carbon nanorods and platinum/carbon. They were explored in two important types of chemical reactions for energy conversion and storage: oxygen reduction and oxygen evolution reactions.

The researchers conclude that ceria could be considered among the most promising materials for use with cobalt on nitrogen-doped carbon nanorods to produce stable catalysts with enhanced electrochemical activity in PEMFCs and related devices.
-end-
For more information, please contact:
Associate Professor Sangaraju Shanmugam
Department of Energy Science and Engineering
Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology (DGIST)
E-mail: sangarajus@dgist.ac.kr

Associated Links

Research Paper on Journal of Applied Catalysis B: Environmental
Advanced Energy Materials Laboratory Research Group

Journal Reference

Arumugam Sivanantham, Pandian Ganesan, and Sangaraju Shanmugam, " A synergistic effect of Co and CeO2 in nitrogen-doped carbon nanostructure for the enhanced oxygen electrode activity and stability", Applied Catalysis B: Environmental, December 2018

DGIST (Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology)

Related Chemical Reactions Articles:

Seeing chemical reactions with music
Audible sound enables chemical coloring and the coexistence of different chemical reactions in a solution.
Nanocatalysts that remotely control chemical reactions inside living cells
POSTECH professor In Su Lee's research team develops a magnetic field-induced heating 'hollow nanoreactors'.
New NMR method enables monitoring of chemical reactions in metal containers
Scientists have developed a new method of observing chemical reactions in metal containers.
Levitating droplets allow scientists to perform 'touchless' chemical reactions
Levitation has long been a staple of magic tricks and movies.
Predicting unpredictable reactions
New research from the University of Pittsburgh's Swanson School of Engineering, in collaboration with the Laboratory of Catalysis and Catalytic Processes (Department of Energy) at Politecnico di Milano in Milan, Italy, advances the field of computational catalysis by paving the way for the simulation of realistic catalysts under reaction conditions.
A new tool for controlling reactions in microrobots and microreactors
In a new paper, Thomas Russell and postdoctoral fellow Ganhua Xie, at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, report that they have used capillary forces to develop a simple method for producing self-assembling hanging droplets of an aqueous polymer solution from the surface of a second aqueous polymer solution in well-ordered arrays.
First-time direct proof of chemical reactions in particulates
Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have developed a new method to analyse particulate matter more precisely than ever before.
Finding the source of chemical reactions
In a collaborative project with MIT and other universities, scientists at Argonne National Laboratory have experimentally detected the fleeting transition state that occurs at the origin of a chemical reaction.
Accelerating chemical reactions without direct contact with a catalyst
Northwestern University researchers demonstrate a chemical reaction produced through an intermediary created by a separate chemical reaction, findings that could impact environmental remediation and fuel production.
Visualizing chemical reactions, e.g. from H2 and CO2 to synthetic natural gas
Scientists at EPFL have designed a reactor that can use IR thermography to visualize dynamic surface reactions and correlate it with other rapid gas analysis methods to obtain a holistic understanding of the reaction in rapidly changing conditions.
More Chemical Reactions News and Chemical Reactions Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Debbie Millman: Designing Our Lives
From prehistoric cave art to today's social media feeds, to design is to be human. This hour, designer Debbie Millman guides us through a world made and remade–and helps us design our own paths.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#574 State of the Heart
This week we focus on heart disease, heart failure, what blood pressure is and why it's bad when it's high. Host Rachelle Saunders talks with physician, clinical researcher, and writer Haider Warraich about his book "State of the Heart: Exploring the History, Science, and Future of Cardiac Disease" and the ails of our hearts.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Insomnia Line
Coronasomnia is a not-so-surprising side-effect of the global pandemic. More and more of us are having trouble falling asleep. We wanted to find a way to get inside that nighttime world, to see why people are awake and what they are thinking about. So what'd Radiolab decide to do?  Open up the phone lines and talk to you. We created an insomnia hotline and on this week's experimental episode, we stayed up all night, taking hundreds of calls, spilling secrets, and at long last, watching the sunrise peek through.   This episode was produced by Lulu Miller with Rachael Cusick, Tracie Hunte, Tobin Low, Sarah Qari, Molly Webster, Pat Walters, Shima Oliaee, and Jonny Moens. Want more Radiolab in your life? Sign up for our newsletter! We share our latest favorites: articles, tv shows, funny Youtube videos, chocolate chip cookie recipes, and more. Support Radiolab by becoming a member today at Radiolab.org/donate.