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Enhanced CO Tolerance with PtRuAuPd/C Anode Catalyst in Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells

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Platinum poisoning in the presence of even trace amounts of carbon monoxide (CO) within a hydrogen fuel degrades the activity of a proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell. Herein, we report a quadmetallic alloy, PtRuAuPd/C, prepared by a water-in-oil microemulsion method for CO tolerant hydrogen oxidation reaction (HOR). The obtained spherical nanoparticles were 3.4 ± 0.5 nm in size with a Pt:Ru:Au:Pd atomic ratio of 22:34:22:22. The X-ray diffraction confirmed the alloy formation through a shift in the Pt peaks. The compositions and oxidation states were elucidated via X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The comparison catalysts—PtRu/C, PtRuAu/C, and PtRuPd/C alloys, were also similarly prepared and analysed. Among all these alloys, PtRuAuPd/C demonstrated the highest electrochemically active surface area of 123.2 m2 /g and a CO oxidation peak potential merely 20 mV higher than the PtRu/C catalyst, as measured using CO stripping voltammetry in a 0.5 M H2SO4 electrolyte. The evaluation of CO tolerance through a 30 s exposure to 5% CO at a constant potential, revealed PtRuAuPd/C recovery of 93.6% in HOR current density outperforming PtRu/C at 91.5%. Following the durability test cycling, wherein a reduction in surface Ru concentration was observed through cyclic voltammetry, the CO oxidation potential of PtRuAuPd/C remained unchanged, while that of PtRu/C significantly shifted to higher potentials by 270 mV. Single fuel cell assessments at 70 °C revealed higher cell performance of PtRuAuPd/C with pure H2 fuel and higher oscillating potentials during self-oxidation with 80 ppm CO contamination in comparison to commercial PtRu/C catalyst demonstrating its high CO tolerance.
The fulltext of this manuscript will be available in April 2025 due to the journal embargo policies of the American Chemical Society. Please contact if fulltext access is required prior to April 2025.
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Accepted date
11 April 2024
Available date
12 April 2025
DOI: 10.1021/acsaem.4c00213
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ACS Applied Energy Materials
Document title
Enhanced CO Tolerance with PtRuAuPd/C Anode Catalyst in Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells
American Chemical Society
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