(422h) Transition Metal Modified Graphitic Mesoporous Carbon for PEMFC Application

Sultana, K., Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering
Worku, D., North Carolina A&T State University
Hossain, M. T. Z., North Carolina A&T State University
Ilias, S., North Carolina A&T State University
Proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) has drawn considerable attention due to its high power density, zero emission and fast startup features. In PEMFC, platinum metal is the catalyst of choice in anode and cathode electrodes. The cost of Pt is a significant issue in commercialization of PEMFC. Further due to its sensitivity to CO, PEMFC requires high purity hydrogen as fuel. Conventional catalyst support (activated carbon) lacks in adequate porous structure, which results in underutilization of Pt metal particles. To better utilize the Pt-catalyst, we synthesized high surface area metal modified mesoporous carbon using hard template-based (SBA-15) method. Highly porous structure of this carbon allows well-dispersed Pt metal loading ensuring its proper utilization. Transition metals (Ni, Fe and Co) and Ni-Fe alloy were used for catalytic graphitization of the carbon. Resulting carbon showed graphitic structure in X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Raman spectroscopy. Electrocatalysts synthesized using these metal modified carbons were tested on the fuel cell. The structural characteristics of these graphitic mesoporous carbon and their performance in PEMFC will be presented in this paper.