INVESTIGATION OF MECHANISMS FOR ELECTROCHEMICAL CATALYSIS
Quarterly technical rept. no. 1, 1 May-31 Jul 1966
PRATT AND WHITNEY AIRCRAFT GROUP EAST HARTFORD CT
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A program is being conducted to investigate the mechanisms of electrocatalysis with respect to the anodic oxidation of selected fuels by novel electrocatalysts in acid electrolyte at temperatures below 150C and at ambient pressure. The transition-metal silicides were chosen for study on the basis of previous work which indicated some catalytic activity for these materials for fuel oxidation. The electrochemical properties of the silicides in acid electrolyte were investigated by measuring the polarization behavior using both potential sweep and steady-state methods. Tests were performed in inert-gas saturated electrolyte to determine corrosion resistance and characteristics of oxide film formation, and then in hydrogen-saturated electrolyte or in electrolyte which is 0.1 molar in methanol to evaluate the catalytic activity. The results showed that the corrosion current for these materials in acid electrolyte is low, generally about 0.00001 ampsq cm. The oxide films formed on the silicides are good electronic conductors and form through a reversible process. The silicides by themselves were found to have no significant activity for the electrochemical oxidation of hydrogen or methanol, but, when combined with trace amounts of platinum, they demonstrated considerable activity.
- Physical Chemistry
- Electric Power Production and Distribution