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Abstract

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. What is the most significant result of this study?
  4. What is the potential for this technology?
  5. What other topics are you working on at the moment?

Invited for this month’s cover are the groups of Hansjörg Grützmacher at ETH in Zürich and Francesco Vizza at ICCOM-CNR in Florence. The image shows in an allegoric form an organometallic fuel cell releasing energy and fine chemicals produced through the electrooxidation of renewable diols. The Communication itself is available at 10.1002/cssc.201402316


What is the most significant result of this study?

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. What is the most significant result of this study?
  4. What is the potential for this technology?
  5. What other topics are you working on at the moment?

123Direct alcohol fuel cells (DAFCs) are the only devices that can convert the free energy of an alcohol into electrical energy with simultaneous release of a product with higher added value. However, known electrocatalysts based on metal nanoparticles are not selective in the oxidation of diols. In our Communication, we report that organometallic fuel cells (OMFCs) are capable of providing simultaneously high power densities and chemicals of industrial importance through the highly selective oxidation of renewable diols.

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Scheme 1. Back: Dr. A. Marchionni, Dr. J. Filippi, Dr. M. Bevilacqua, Dr. H. Miller, M. Bellini Middle: Dr. A. Lavacchi, Dr. W. Oberhauser, Dr. S. P. Annen Front: Dr. F. Vizza,* Prof. H. Grützmacher*

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Scheme 2. Istituto di Chimica dei Composti Organometallici Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche Area di Ricerca di Firenze (Italy) E-mail: francesco.vizza@iccom.cnr.it

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Scheme 3. Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences ETH Hönggerberg 8093 Zürich (Switzerland) E-mail: hgruetzmacher@ethz.ch

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What is the potential for this technology?

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. What is the most significant result of this study?
  4. What is the potential for this technology?
  5. What other topics are you working on at the moment?

The possibilities and range of applications of OMFC technology is very large in view of the fact that molecular metal complexes can be easily embedded in a huge variety of nanosized conducting supports of great relevance in (electro)catalysis and photocatalysis, such as functionalized fullerenes, carbon nanotubes, nanofibers, and other nanosized matrices, for example, titania nanotubes.

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What other topics are you working on at the moment?

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. What is the most significant result of this study?
  4. What is the potential for this technology?
  5. What other topics are you working on at the moment?

We are working on the electrochemical reforming of biomass-derived alcohols for simultaneous hydrogen and raw-chemical production. The objective is to produce hydrogen while spending as little electrical energy as possible. We propose the exploitation of alcohol electro-reforming as an essential component of biorefinery.