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Langmuir. 2005 Nov 22;21(24):11474-9.

PtRu/carbon nanotube nanocomposite synthesized in supercritical fluid: a novel electrocatalyst for direct methanol fuel cells.

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Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, P.O. Box 999, Richland, Washington 99352, USA.


Platinum/ruthenium nanoparticles were decorated on carbon nanotubes (CNT) in supercritical carbon dioxide, and the nanocomposites were characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). TEM images show that the particles size is in the range of 5-10 nm, and XRD patterns show a face-centered cubic crystal structure. Methanol electrooxidation in 1 M sulfuric acid electrolyte containing 2 M methanol were studied onPtRu/CNT (Pt, 4.1 wt%; Ru, 2.3 wt%; molar ratio approximately Pt/Ru = 45:55) catalysts using cyclic voltammetry, linear sweep voltammetry, chronoamperometry, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. All the electrochemical results show that PtRu/CNT catalysts exhibit high activity for methanol oxidation which resulted from the high surface area of carbon nanotubes and the nanostructure of platinum/ruthenium particles. Compared with Pt/CNT, the onset potential is much lower and the ratio of forward anodic peak current to reverse anodic peak current is much higher for methanol oxidation, which indicates the higher catalytic activity of PtRu/CNT. The presence of Ru with Pt accelerates the rate of methanol oxidation. The results demonstrated the feasibility of processing bimetallic catalysts in supercritical carbon dioxide for fuel cell applications.

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