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Highly active oxygen reduction non-platinum group metal electrocatalyst without direct metal–nitrogen coordination

Abstract : Replacement of noble metals in catalysts for cathodic oxygen reduction reaction with transition metals mostly create active sites based on a composite of nitrogen-coordinated transition metal in close concert with non-nitrogen-coordinated carbon-embedded metal atom clusters. Here we report a non-platinum group metal electrocatalyst with an active site devoid of any direct nitrogen coordination to iron that outperforms the benchmark platinum-based catalyst in alkaline media and is comparable to its best contemporaries in acidic media. In situ X-ray absorption spectroscopy in conjunction with ex situ microscopy clearly shows nitrided carbon fibres with embedded iron particles that are not directly involved in the oxygen reduction pathway. Instead, the reaction occurs primarily on the carbon–nitrogen structure in the outer skin of the nitrided carbon fibres. Implications include the potential of creating greater active site density and the potential elimination of any Fenton-type process involving exposed iron ions culminating in peroxide initiated free-radical formation.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01174293
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Submitted on : Wednesday, July 15, 2015 - 9:56:28 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, May 28, 2019 - 2:06:13 PM

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Kara Strickland, Elise Miner, Qingying Jia, Urszula Tylus, Nagappan Ramaswamy, et al.. Highly active oxygen reduction non-platinum group metal electrocatalyst without direct metal–nitrogen coordination. Nature Communications, Nature Publishing Group, 2015, 6, pp.7343. ⟨10.1038/ncomms8343⟩. ⟨hal-01174293⟩

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