Sluggish methanol oxidation reaction and low durability are the main obstacles for commercialization of direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs). In this study, we describe the fabrication of 4 different carbon black (CB)-based electrocatalysts for the DMFC by changing the weight ratio between the Pt feed and polymer wrapped carbon support. In all the fabricated electrocatalysts, CB was coated with poly[2,2′-(2,6-pyridine)-5,5′-bibenzimidazole] on which the Pt nanoparticles were deposited, which were further coated with poly(vinylphosphonic acid). We found that a decrease in the Pt particle size produced higher catalytic activity. The electrochemical surface area (ECSA) of the electrocatalyst with the smallest Pt particle size was 120.8±12.0 m2-gPt-1. The mass activity of the methanol oxidation reaction reached 1860 mA-mgPt-1, which is, to the best of our knowledge, the highest value among the recorded catalytic activities of the CB-based electrocatalysts. Moreover, after 100-000 cycles the electrocatalyst displayed only 38-% and 10.7-% decrease in ECSA and methanol oxidation activity, respectively. Such an obtained durability was ≈10 times higher than that of the commercial CB/Pt electrocatalyst. Fuel cell royale: A newly fabricated direct methanol fuel cell electrocatalyst composed of Pt (2.4 nm)/carbon black/polybenzimidazole/poly(vinylphosphonic acid) showed enhancements in durability and catalytic activity.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Inorganic Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry