JOURNAL ARTICLE

Improved performance of proton exchange membrane fuel cells with p-toluenesulfonic acid-doped co-PPy/C as cathode electrocatalyst

Xianxia Yuan, Xin Zeng, Hui-Juan Zhang, Zi-Feng Ma, Chao-Yang Wang
Journal of the American Chemical Society 2010 February 17, 132 (6): 1754-5
20092339
A novel catalyst, Co-PPy-TsOH/C, for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) was prepared by pyrolyzing cobalt salt and p-toluenesulfonic acid (TsOH)-doped polypyrrole-modified carbon support in an inert atmosphere. The characteristics and electrocatalytic activities of Co-PPy-TsOH/C were analyzed with various techniques, including Raman spectroscopy, elemental analysis, rotating ring disk electrode analysis, and a single H(2)-O(2) PEMFC, and compared with those of undoped catalyst Co-PPy/C. The results showed that doping TsOH introduces larger N and S contents in Co-PPy-TsOH/C, leading to much better electrocatalytic performance for ORR than Co-PPy/C, and that Co-PPy-TsOH/C is more likely to follow a four-electron-transfer reaction to reduce oxygen directly to H(2)O. The performance of PEMFCs with Co-PPy-TsOH/C as cathode catalyst is better than that with Co-PPy/C, and the resulting maximum output power density of 203 mW cm(-2) is a substantial improvement over the best values reported in the literature with Co-PPy/C-based cathode catalyst. This implies that doping TsOH is a valuable method to improve the catalytic activity of Co-PPy/C and that Co-PPy-TsOH/C is a promising cathode catalyst for PEMFCs. The function and mechanism of doping have also been analyzed and the configurations of PPy-TsOH/C and Co-PPy-TsOH/C proposed.

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