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An Effective Pd–Ni2P/C Anode Catalyst for Direct Formic Acid Fuel Cells

Authors

  • Jinfa Chang,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Electroanalytical Chemistry, Laboratory of Advanced Power Sources, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (P.R. China)
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    • These authors contributed equally to this work.

  • Dr. Ligang Feng,

    1. Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), ISIC-LSCI, BCH 3305, Lausanne 1015 (Switzerland) http://lsci.epfl.ch
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    • These authors contributed equally to this work.

  • Prof. Dr. Changpeng Liu,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Electroanalytical Chemistry, Laboratory of Advanced Power Sources, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (P.R. China)
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  • Prof. Dr. Wei Xing,

    Corresponding author
    1. State Key Laboratory of Electroanalytical Chemistry, Laboratory of Advanced Power Sources, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (P.R. China)
    • Wei Xing, State Key Laboratory of Electroanalytical Chemistry, Laboratory of Advanced Power Sources, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (P.R. China)

      Xile Hu, Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), ISIC-LSCI, BCH 3305, Lausanne 1015 (Switzerland) http://lsci.epfl.ch

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  • Prof. Dr. Xile Hu

    Corresponding author
    1. Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), ISIC-LSCI, BCH 3305, Lausanne 1015 (Switzerland) http://lsci.epfl.ch
    • Wei Xing, State Key Laboratory of Electroanalytical Chemistry, Laboratory of Advanced Power Sources, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022 (P.R. China)

      Xile Hu, Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), ISIC-LSCI, BCH 3305, Lausanne 1015 (Switzerland) http://lsci.epfl.ch

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  • The work in CAS is supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program, 2012CB215500, 2012CB932800), the National High Technology Research and Development Program of China (863 Program, 2012AA053401), the Recruitment Program of Foreign Experts (WQ20122200077), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (20933004, 21073180) and the Strategic priority research program of CAS (XDA0903104). The work at EPFL is supported by a grant from the Competence Center for Energy and Mobility (CCEM) in the framework of the Hytech project.

Abstract

The direct formic acid fuel cell is an emerging energy conversion device for which palladium is considered as the state-of-the-art anode catalyst. In this communication, we show that the activity and stability of palladium for formic acid oxidation can be significantly enhanced using nickel phosphide (Ni2P) nanoparticles as a cocatalyst. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) reveals a strong electronic interaction between Ni2P and Pd. A direct formic acid fuel cell incorporating the best Pd–Ni2P anode catalyst exhibits a power density of 550 mW cm−2, which is 3.5 times of that of an analogous device using a commercial Pd anode catalyst.

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