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Oxygen Reduction Reaction Electrocatalytic Activity of SAD-Pt/GLAD-Cr Nanorods

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 May 2012


Wisam J. Khudhayer
Affiliation:
Departments of Systems Engineering, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock AR, 72204, USA
Nancy Kariuki
Affiliation:
Chemical Sciences and Engineering Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 60439-4837, USA
Deborah J. Myers
Affiliation:
Chemical Sciences and Engineering Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL 60439-4837, USA
Ali U. Shaikh
Affiliation:
Departments of Chemistry, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock AR, 72204, USA
Tansel Karabacak
Affiliation:
Departments of Applied Science, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock AR, 72204, USA

Abstract

Nanorod arrays of chromium (Cr) were grown on glassy carbon (GC) electrodes by a dc magnetron sputtering glancing angle deposition (GLAD) technique. The Cr nanorods were used as low-cost, high surface area, metallic supports for a conformal layer of Pt thin film catalyst, as a potential low-loading electrocatalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells. A dc magnetron sputtering small angle deposition (SAD) technique was utilized for a conformal coating of Pt on Cr nanorods. The ORR activity of SAD-Pt/GLAD-Cr electrodes was investigated using cyclic voltammetry (CV) and rotating-disk electrode (RDE) techniques in a 0.1 M HClO4 solution at room temperature. A reference sample consisting of GLAD Cr nanorods coated with a Pt thin film deposited at normal incidence (θ = 0o) was prepared and compared with the SAD-Pt/GLAD-Cr nanorods. Compared to GLAD Cr nanorods coated with Pt thin film at θ = 0o, the SAD-Pt/GLAD-Cr nanorod electrode exhibited higher ECSA and area-specific and mass-specific ORR activity. These results indicate that the growth of catalyst layer on the base-metal nanorods by the SAD technique provides a more conformal and possibly a nanostructured coating, significantly enhancing the catalyst utilization.


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Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2012

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