Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 1-3-2019


The recent revolution in nanoscience and global energy demand have motivated research in liquid fuel cells (LFCs) due to their enhanced efficiency, moving flexibility, and reduced contamination. In line with this advancement, a glassy carbon (GC) electrode was modified with platinum (PtNPs) and gold (AuNPs) nanoparticles to fabricate a nanosized anode for formic acid, methanol, and ethylene glycol electrooxidation (abbreviated, respectively, to FAO, MO, and EGO), of the key anodic reactions of LFCs. The deposition sequence of the catalyst’s layers was important where the Au/Pt/GC electrode (in which PtNPs were directly deposited onto the GC surface followed by AuNPs—surface coverage ≈ 32%) exhibited the best catalytic performance. The catalytic performance of the Au/Pt/GC anode excelled (at least threefold) its value obtained at the Pt/GC anode with regard to FAO and EGO, if the oxidation peak currents were compared. This enhancement got reduced to 1.4 times in the case of MO, but the large decrease (− 220 mV) in the onset potential of MO provided compensation. The role of AuNPs in the Au/Pt/GC catalyst was principal in boosting its catalytic performance as it immunized the underlying PtNPs against CO poisoning which is associated with the release of CO as an intermediate during the oxidation. Interestingly, AuNPs succeeded in interrupting the contiguity of the Pt surface sites required for CO adsorption during FAO, MO, and EGO and, thus, presage preventing the deterioration of the catalytic performance of their corresponding LFCs.