PRESS-NEWS.org - Press Release Distribution
PRESS RELEASES DISTRIBUTION

Investigating the surface extraction of platinum catalysts in alkaline media

Researchers elucidate mechanisms for controlling the surface oxidation processes that affect the performance of platinum catalysts in alkaline media

Investigating the surface extraction of platinum catalysts in alkaline media
2024-04-02
(Press-News.org) The pursuit of carbon neutrality drives the exploration of clean energy sources, with hydrogen fuel cells emerging as a promising avenue. In these cells, hydrogen undergoes an electrochemical reaction with oxygen to produce electricity and water. Also, the reverse of this process, called electrolysis, can be used to split the abundantly available water to produce hydrogen and oxygen. These two technologies can work in tandem to provide a clean and renewable source of energy. A pivotal element in these two technologies is the platinum (Pt) electrode.

Hydrogen fuel cells consist of two electrodes: an anode and a cathode, with an electrolyte between them. Pt serves as a fundamental catalyst in low-temperature fuel cells, such as alkaline fuel cells and polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs). Pt has a high activity for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), which is crucial for fuel cells, in alkaline and acidic conditions at the operating voltage of PEFC cathodes. However, this also leads to oxide formation on the surface, which roughens and dissolves the Pt layer, ultimately degrading the cathodes and affecting performance and stability. Understanding surface oxide formation mechanisms is thus crucial for developing Pt cathode catalysts that work well in alkaline conditions. Studies have shown that the oxide formation on the Pt surface depends on the electrode potential, the electrolyte, and the electrical double layer (EDL). While studies have investigated the oxide formation and reduction on the Pt surface in acidic media, few of them have addressed the same in alkaline media, present in fuel cells and electrolyzers with anion exchange membranes.

To address this gap, a team of researchers led by Professor Masashi Nakamura from the Graduate School of Engineering, Chiba University, Japan, dug deep into the oxide formation mechanisms on Pt surfaces in alkaline media. “In a previous study, we reported that interfacial hydrophobic ions with long alkyl chains can enhance ORR. This suggests that it is possible to construct an interfacial reaction field that not only activates the ORR but also improves the durability of Pt electrodes by using optimal interfacial ions,” explains Prof. Nakamura. The study also included contributions from Dr. Tomoaki Kumeda and Professor Nagahiro Hoshi, both from the Graduate School of Engineering at Chiba University, along with Dr. Osami Sakata from the Center for Synchrotron Radiation Research at Japan Synchrotron Radiation Research Institute. Their findings have been published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

The team investigated the oxide formation on the Pt (111) surface in alkaline aqueous solutions containing different cations, namely Lithium cation (Li+), Potassium (K+) cation and Tetramethylammonium cation (TMA+), using advanced methods like X-ray crystal truncation rod (CTR) scattering, gold nanoparticle-based surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (GNP-SERS), and infrared reflection absorption spectroscopy (IRAS). “Studies have shown that a combination of vibrational spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction is effective for elucidating surface oxidation processes,” adds Prof. Nakamura.

X-ray CTR revealed that oxide formation results in surface buckling and Pt extraction. SERS and IRAS measurements revealed the potential and cation-dependent formation of three oxide species, namely infrared (IR)-active adsorbed hydroxide OH (OHad), Raman active adsorbed water (H2O)ad, and Raman-active oxygen (Oad). The team found that hydrophilic cations like Li+ stabilize IR-active OHad, thus preventing harmful oxide formation, while moderate hydrophilicity of K+ has no protective effect. Interestingly, bulky hydrophobic cations such as TMA+ also reduce irreversible oxidation, similar to Li+. Notably, the team also found that the electrostatic repulsion between Raman-active (H2O)ad and neighboring Raman-active Oad facilitates Pt extraction.

These results suggest that interfacial cations play an essential role in oxide formation on Pt surfaces, which can be controlled by selecting appropriate cations. Elaborating on these results, Prof. Nakamura remarks: “These insights are crucial for understanding the surface oxidation mechanisms and the EDL structure, which can be beneficial for achieving high-performance and stable Pt electrocatalysts for use in next-generation electrochemical devices.”

Overall, this study takes us a step further in achieving a zero-carbon future powered by abundant and clean hydrogen.


About Professor Masashi Nakamura 
Masashi Nakamura is currently a Professor at the Department of Applied Chemistry and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Engineering, Chiba University, Japan. He obtained his Ph.D. from Keio University in 2002. He is a member of the Chemical Society of Japan, the Electrochemical Society of Japan, and the Society of Surface Science of Japan. He has over 130 publications and over 3500 citations to his name. His research interests include surface science and surface electrochemistry.
 

END

[Attachments] See images for this press release:
Investigating the surface extraction of platinum catalysts in alkaline media

ELSE PRESS RELEASES FROM THIS DATE:

AI’s ability to detect tumor cells could be key to more accurate bone cancer prognoses

AI’s ability to detect tumor cells could be key to more accurate bone cancer prognoses
2024-04-02
Fukuoka, Japan - Researchers at Kyushu University have developed and validated a machine-learning model that can accurately evaluate the density of surviving tumor cells after treatment in pathological images of osteosarcoma—the most prevalent malignant bone tumor. The model can assess how individual tumor cells respond to treatment and can predict overall patient prognosis more reliably than conventional methods. Surgery and chemotherapy have significantly improved the outcomes of patients with localized osteosarcoma. However, patients with advanced metastatic disease (the stage where cancerous cells have spread to distant tissues) have a low survival rate. ...

New materials discovered for safe, high-performance solid-state lithium-ion batteries

New materials discovered for safe, high-performance solid-state lithium-ion batteries
2024-04-02
All-solid-state lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries with solid electrolytes are non-flammable and have higher energy density and transference numbers than those with liquid electrolytes. They are expected to take a share of the market for conventional liquid electrolyte Li-ion batteries, such as electric vehicles. However, despite these advantages, solid electrolytes have lower Li-ion conductivity and pose challenges in achieving adequate electrode-solid electrolyte contact. While sulfide-based solid electrolytes are conductive, they react with moisture to form toxic hydrogen disulfide. Therefore, there's ...

Mental health emergencies in kids were more severe during the pandemic

2024-04-02
A new study found that during the pandemic pediatric emergency departments (EDs) saw more children and adolescents who needed a psychiatric admission, as well as an increase in severe conditions, such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and substance use disorders. The higher demand for a psychiatric inpatient bed often exceeded availability, resulting in over 12-hour stays in the ED awaiting admission for nearly 20 percent of children with mental health emergencies in 2022, up from 7 percent before the pandemic. Findings were published in Academic Emergency Medicine. “Our data shows that pediatric emergency departments saw more severe mental health presentations during the pandemic, ...

The math problem that took nearly a century to solve

The math problem that took nearly a century to solve
2024-04-02
We’ve all been there: staring at a math test with a problem that seems impossible to solve. What if finding the solution to a problem took almost a century? For mathematicians who dabble in Ramsey theory, this is very much the case. In fact, little progress had been made in solving Ramsey problems since the 1930s. Now, University of California San Diego researchers Jacques Verstraete and Sam Mattheus have found the answer to r(4,t), a longstanding Ramsey problem that has perplexed ...

When did the chicken cross the road? New evidence from Central Asia

When did the chicken cross the road? New evidence from Central Asia
2024-04-02
Chickens are one of the most economically important animals in the world today. However, the story of their origins and dispersal across the ancient world is still poorly understood. In fact, new archaeological techniques have recently led to the recognition that many finds of bones previously thought to represent early chickens in fact belonged to wild birds. Now, in a new publication, an international team of archaeologists, historians, and biomolecular scientists present the earliest clear evidence for the raising of chickens for egg production, and argue that the loss of seasonal egg laying was the main driver for the dispersal of domestic chickens across Eurasia and northeast Africa.  Using ...

A data representation method using distance correlation

A data representation method using distance correlation
2024-04-02
Association in-between features has been demonstrated to improve the representation ability of data.  However, the original association data reconstruction method may face two issues: the dimension of reconstructed data is undoubtedly highly than that of original data, and adopted association measure method does not well balance effectiveness and efficiency. To solve the problems, a research team led by Yuhua QIAN published their new research on 12 Mar 2024 in Frontiers of ...

Lundquist investigator Dr. Eiji Yoshihara awarded $3 million NIH R01 grant for diabetes stem cell therapy research

Lundquist investigator Dr. Eiji Yoshihara awarded $3 million NIH R01 grant for diabetes stem cell therapy research
2024-04-02
  The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), a division of the National Institutes of Health, has granted Eiji Yoshihara, PhD, a principal investigator at The Lundquist Institute (TLI) and assistant professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, a five-year grant totaling $3 million. This prestigious NIH R01 grant, known for its rigorous peer-review process, is dedicated to advancing stem cell therapy research for treating diabetes. Insulin-dependent diabetes, including autoimmune Type 1 and stress-induced Type 2, presents a significant health burden, often necessitating lifelong ...

YKT6 gene variants cause a new genetic disorder finds a new study

2024-04-02
A recent collaborative study has discovered rare variants in the YKT6 gene as the cause of a new neurological disorder characterized by developmental delays along with severe progressive liver disease and a potential risk for liver cancer. The study, published in Genetics in Medicine, was led by Dr. Hugo Bellen, Distinguished Service Professor at Baylor College of Medicine and Principal Investigator at the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute (Duncan NRI) at Texas Children’s Hospital, and Dr. Wendy Chung, the Chief of the Department of Pediatrics at Boston Children’s ...

Australia on track for unprecedented, decades-long megadroughts

2024-04-02
Australia could soon see megadroughts that last for more than 20 years, according to new modelling from The Australian National University (ANU) and the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes. The researchers’ bleak findings are before factoring in human impact on the climate since the Industrial Revolution. The ANU-led team also found that 20th century droughts in southwestern and eastern Australia, including the Murray-Darling Basin, were longer on average compared to pre-industrial times. According to the scientists, the findings paint a worrying picture of future droughts in Australia that are far worse than anything in recent experience. Megadroughts are exceptionally ...

Dilling named associate laboratory director for neutron sciences at ORNL

Dilling named associate laboratory director for neutron sciences at ORNL
2024-04-02
Jens Dilling has been named associate laboratory director for the Neutron Sciences Directorate, or NScD, at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, effective April 1. “ORNL pioneered neutron scattering in the 1940s, developing a new technique that enables scientists to explore and create new materials, batteries and more,” ORNL Director Stephen Streiffer said. “Today, ORNL remains at the forefront of this science, and Jens will play a critical role in ensuring the nation's ...

LAST 30 PRESS RELEASES:

UK/Portuguese study strongly suggests antibiotic-resistant “superbugs” are being passed from cats and dogs to their owners

Researchers study effects of solvation and ion valency on metallopolymers

Physicists solve puzzle about ancient galaxy found by Webb telescope

Clear guidelines needed for synthetic data to ensure transparency, accountability and fairness study says

Report finds significant gender and racial inequities in the educational measurement profession

University of Houston and Scotland’s Heriot-Watt University forge strategic energy alliance

Rice team demonstrates miniature brain stimulator in humans

Jennifer Stinson receives prestigious Barer-Flood Prize in health services research

First insights into the genetic bottleneck characterizing early sheep husbandry in the Neolithic period

Theories that explain the crisis in democracy are inadequate for Latin America, experts say

Starving cells hijack protein transport stations

Where have all the right whales gone?

Researchers find no link between COVID-19 virus and development of asthma in children

Cell’s ‘garbage disposal’ may have another role: helping neurons near skin sense the environment

Study reveals potential to reverse lung fibrosis using the body’s own healing technique

International team co-led by a BSC researcher discovers more than 50 new deep-sea species in one of the most unexplored areas of the planet

Cleveland Innovation District partners exceeding many targets set by state and JobsOhio

A third of women experience migraines associated with menstruation, most commonly when premenopausal

MD Anderson Research Highlights for April 12, 2024

Soft Robotics appoints new Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Barbara Mazzolai, PhD

Wiley releases Mass Spectra of Designer Drugs 2024 to accelerate forensics analysis of fentanyls, cannabinoids, and more

Freestanding emergency departments are popular, but do they function as intended?

University of Cincinnati experts present at national neurology conference

Bonobos are more aggressive than previously thought

How seaweed became multicellular

Melanomas resist drugs by ‘breaking’ genes

Africa’s iconic flamingos threatened by rising lake levels, study shows

Vaccination timeliness among US children ages 0-19 months

Changes in permanent contraception procedures among young adults following the Dobbs decision

Semaglutide vs endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty for weight loss

[Press-News.org] Investigating the surface extraction of platinum catalysts in alkaline media
Researchers elucidate mechanisms for controlling the surface oxidation processes that affect the performance of platinum catalysts in alkaline media