Novel materials for low-temperature fuel cells

In the present study, novel efficient materials will be created by deposition of various metal nanoparticles or their alloys on the non-noble metal 3D-structured foams (Ni, Cu, Fe) with extremely high surface area using the electrochemical and chemical methods. The surface morphology, structure and composition of the formed materials will be studied in detail using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and inductively coupled plasma plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES). Electrocatalytic activity of the created materials will be evaluated for the oxidation of methanol, ethanol, CO as well as the reduction of oxygen using cyclic voltammetry, chrono-techniques, and the rotating disk electrode method. Most promising created materials will be tested under working fuel cell conditions using the fuel cell test station.

Department of Catalysis at FTMC has enough new equipment to implement the work tasks. The following equipment will be used: potentiostats/galvanostats/frequence analyzers Autolab PGSTAT with a rotating disk electrode and rotating ring disk electrode systems (Metrhom) and “Zenium workstation” with a rotating disk electrode system (ZAHNER-Elektrik GmbH & Co.KG, Germany), quartz crystal nanoscale QCM922 (Princeton Applied Research, USA), ICP-Optical Emission Spectrometer Optima 7000DV (Perkin Elmer), Fuel cell test station 850e (Scribner Associates Inc.). The FTMC is also equipped with an equipment for the characterization of materials morphology, structure and composition: D8Advance X-ray diffractometer (Bruker AXS, Germany), scanning electron microscope EVO 50 EP (Carl Zeiss SMT AG, Germany), scanning electron microscope Helios NanoLab 650 (FEI, The Netherlands), transmission electron microscope Tecnai G2 F20 X-TWIN (FEI, Netherlands), spectrometer of X-ray photoelectrons and Auger electrons ESCALAB MK II (VG Scientific, United Kingdom).
For more information, please contact the theme supervisor L. Tamašauskaitė Tamašiūnaitė.