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Synthesis and Characterisation of Platinum-cobalt-manganese Ternary Alloy Catalysts Supported on Carbon Nanofibers: An Alternative Catalyst for Hydrogen Evolution Reaction


A systematic method for obtaining a novel electrode structure based on PtCoMn ternary alloy catalyst supported on graphitic carbon nanofibers (CNF) for hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) in acidic media is proposed. Ternary alloy nanoparticles (Co0.6Mn0.4 Pt), with a mean crystallite diameter under 10 nm, were electrodeposited onto a graphitic support material using a two-step pulsed deposition technique. Initially, a surface functionalisation of the carbon nanofibers is performed with the aid of oxygen plasma. Subsequently, a short galvanostatic pulse electrodeposition technique is applied. It has been demonstrated that, if pulsing current is employed, compositionally controlled PtCoMn catalysts can be achieved. Variations of metal concentration ratios in the electrolyte and main deposition parameters, such as current density and pulse shape, led to electrodes with relevant catalytic activity towards HER. The samples were further characterised using several physico-chemical methods to reveal their morphology, structure, chemical and electrochemical properties. X-ray diffraction confirms the PtCoMn alloy formation on the graphitic support and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy highlights the presence of the three metallic components from the alloy structure. The preliminary tests regarding the electrocatalytic activity of the developed electrodes display promising results compared to commercial Pt/C catalysts. The PtCoMn/CNF electrode exhibits a decrease in hydrogen evolution overpotential of about 250 mV at 40 mA cm−2 in acidic solution (0.5 M H2SO4) when compared to similar platinum based electrodes (Pt/CNF) and a Tafel slope of around 120 mV dec−1, indicating that HER takes place under the Volmer-Heyrovsky mechanismm

Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Germany ; Romania

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