UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Ordered Porous TiO₂@C Layer as an Electrocatalyst Support for Improved Stability in PEMFCs Liu, Gaoyang; Yang, Zhaoyi; Wang, Xindong; Fang, Baizeng


Proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) are the most promising clean energy source in the 21st century. In order to achieve a high power density, electrocatalytic performance, and electrochemical stability, an ordered array structure membrane electrode is highly desired. In this paper, a new porous Pt-TiO₂@C ordered integrated electrode was prepared and applied to the cathode of a PEMFC. The utilization of the TiO₂@C support can significantly decrease the loss of catalyst caused by the oxidation of the carbon from the conventional carbon layer due to the strong interaction of TiO₂ and C. Furthermore, the thin carbon layer coated on TiO₂ provides the rich active sites for the Pt growth, and the ordered support and catalyst structure reduces the mass transport resistance and improves the stability of the electrode. Due to its unique structural characteristics, the ordered porous Pt-TiO₂@C array structure shows an excellent catalytic activity and improved Pt utilization. In addition, the as-developed porous ordered structure exhibits superior stability after 3000 cycles of accelerated durability test, which reveals an electrochemical surface area decay of less than 30%, considerably lower than that (i.e., 80%) observed for the commercial Pt/C.

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