Design of Efficient Bimetallic Pt-Au Nanoparticle Based Anodes for Direct Formic Acid Fuel Cells

Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 1-8-2019


Formic acid (FA) electro-oxidation (FAO) was investigated at a binary catalyst composed of Pt (PtNPs) and Au (AuNPs) nanoparticles which were electrodeposited simultaneously onto a glassy carbon (GC) substrate. The catalytic activity of the binary modified catalyst toward FAO was significantly influenced by the relative molar ratio of PtNPs and AuNPs. Interestingly, the catalyst with a molar ratio (1:1) of PtNPs and AuNPs showed the highest activity toward the favorable pathway of FAO (ca. 26 times increase in the direct peak current concurrently with a ca. 133 mV negative shift in the onset potential). Such enhancement was believed originating from the outstanding improvement of charge transfer during FAO via the desirable “nonpoisoning” pathway along with a significant mitigation of CO poisoning at the electrode surface. The diversity of techniques (cyclic voltammetry, chronoamperometry, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, field-emission scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction) employed in this investigation offered opportunities to assess and interpret the catalyst's activity and stability and to possess a deliberated overview about its morphology, composition and structure