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Halide regulated growth of electrocatalytic metal nanoparticles directly onto a carbon paper electrode

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Journal Article - Open Access

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Departments of Chemistry and Materials Science and Engineering, University of Utah Salt Lake City United States

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Direct growth of hierarchical micronanostructured metal arrays on a 3D substrate is a powerful tool to enhance the catalytic efficiency of metal particles towards a wide range of substrates. In this contribution, we demonstrate a novel and versatile method for growing anisotropic microstructures directly onto a 3D carbon paper electrode, using Au, Pd and Pt nanoparticles as elementary building blocks. It was determined that halides play a crucial role in the morphology of synthesized Au particles, leading to either complex flower-like rough surfaces exhibiting high catalytic activity or featureless smooth surfaces exhibiting low catalytic activity. Of the three metal materials studied, the Pt decorated carbon paper Ptcarbon material exhibits a high electro catalytic activity toward the oxygen reduction reaction in an alkaline medium. We demonstrate that this new Pt material can operate as a cathode in an alkaline glucose fuel cell exhibiting outstanding peak power density of 23 mW cm2 using an anode of Aucarbon or Ptcarbon at room temperature and low metal loading without any fuel circulation. This newly described fabrication approach allows for the rational control of metallic particle growth, paving a new way towards materials with regulated surface roughness allowing for tune able physical, optical and catalytic properties.

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  • Electrochemical Energy Storage

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