Date of Award

8-9-2014

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

First Advisor

Branko N. Popov

Abstract

Graphitic carbon nanostructure (GCN) was synthesized by a simple procedure using cobalt(II) gluconate as a precursor and used as a catalyst support for polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell cathode. A novel stabilization procedure was developed to enhance the thermal stability of the GCN support. Support stabilization resulted in well-defined crystalline graphitic hollow structures as confirmed by highresolution transmission electron microscope (HRTEM). The prepared GCNs are used as support for depositing platinum nanoparticles (size) by modified polyol process. Rotating ring disk electrode (RRDE) and fuel cell studies were carried out to evaluate the catalyst performance. Cycling studies (0.6-1.0 V vs. RHE) performed on RRDE indicated better catalyst stability when compared to commercial Pt/C catalyst.

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