Title: The CathCat Project: Novel Catalyst Materials for the Cathode Side of MEAs Suitable for Transportation Applications
Authors: SCHNEIDER OliverJU WenboASEN LudwigMOSTAFA EhabSTIMMING UlrichTSOTRIDIS GeorgiosLUO YunESTUDILLO-WONG L AALONSO-VANTE NicolasTRIPKOVIC VladimirROSSMEISL JanESCUDERO ESCRIBANO MariaSTEPHENS IfanCHORKENDORFF IbLINDAHL NiklasBJÖRN WICKMAN BjörnLANGHAMMER ChristopherDURANTE ChristianRIZZI G AGRANOZZI GaetanoGROT StepheinDALETOU MariaNEOPHYTIDES StylianosCERRI Isotta
Publisher: CNRS
Publication Year: 2015
JRC N°: JRC96050
URI: http://www.efcd2015.eu/
http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC96050
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: The large overpotentials for the oxygen reduction reaction at the cathode of low temperature PEM fuel cells and the high Pt loadings used are an impeding factor for their widespread market introduction: these factors increase the cost of the fuel cell stack and decrease the operating range for a certain amount of hydrogen fuel. At the current Pt loadings, on the long term also the Pt availability would become a problem. The FCH JU had set the following technical targets in their 2011 call: Pt loading below 0.15 g/kW (0.1 g/kW) at a BOL efficiency above 55%, BOL power > 1 W cm-2 at 1.5 A cm-2, and a lifetime above 5000 h. The aim of the CathCat project is to improve the performance and reduce the cost of PEM cathodes by development of new alloy catalysts based on Pt or Pd as one constituent and Rare Earth Elements as the second constituent. These alloys are known to form thick compressed Pt (or possibly Pd) overlayers during initial de-alloying, leading to a significant enhancement of the catalytic activity. Within the project, the possible materials were screened by DFT methods for stability and activity as well as by studies on model alloys based on polycrystalline bulk alloys, single crystalline surface alloys and on thin films. Methods for the preparation of nanoparticles of those materials are developed and up-scaled for MEA production. In parallel, new support materials are explored based on functionalized carbons, carbon nanotubes and oxides. The new support/catalyst combinations are transferred to the cathode side of MEAs that are tested for performance and durability. Aside from low temperature PEMs, the materials are also tested for application in high temperature PEMs. In this presentation, an overview of the main results of the CathCat project is given, spanning the entire range from DFT studies combined with studies on polycrystalline alloy electrodes [1] and nanoparticles generated in a cluster source [2], advanced optical characterisation techniques like nanoplasmonic sensing, and nitrogen-doped carbon [3] and mixed oxide support materials [4]. Several different methods were applied in order to fabricate the Pt-rare earth alloys in nanoparticular form, and the results obtained with the different methods will also be discussed.
JRC Directorate:Energy, Transport and Climate

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