Durable Transition-Metal-Carbide-Supported Pt–Ru Anodes for Direct Methanol Fuel Cells



Molybdenum carbide (MoC) and tungsten carbide (WC) are synthesized by direct carbonization method. Pt–Ru catalysts supported on MoC, WC, and Vulcan XC-72R are prepared, and characterized by X-ray diffraction, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy in conjunction with electrochemistry. Electrochemical activities for the catalysts towards methanol electro-oxidation are studied by cyclic voltammetry. All the electro-catalysts are subjected to accelerated durability test (ADT). The electrochemical activity of carbide-supported electro-catalysts towards methanol electro-oxidation is found to be higher than carbon-supported catalysts before and after ADT. The study suggests that Pt–Ru/MoC and Pt–Ru/WC catalysts are more durable than Pt–Ru/C. Direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) with Pt–Ru/MoC and Pt–Ru/WC anodes also exhibit higher performance than the DMFC with Pt–Ru/C anode.