Nanoshell-Containing Carbon Cathode Catalyst for Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell from Herbaceous Plants Lignin


Nanoshell-containing carbon (NSCC) is one of the Pt-surrogate catalysts for proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) invented by us to promote oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), the cathode reaction of the cell. In the present study, we selected one of renewable resources, lignin from herbaceous plants as the carbon precursor for NSCC. The lignin was admixed with cobalt phthalocyanine (CoPc), the nanoshell (NS) forming catalyst, and then carbonized at 1000℃. Transmission electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction studies confirmed the formation of NS structure. The ORR activity of the prepared NSCC increased with the amount of CoPc, and the activity of lignin-based NSCC was higher than that of phenol-formaldehyde resin-based NSCC with the same amount of CoPc added. Surface analysis by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy revealed no metal species on the NSCC but higher N/C ratio for the lignin-based NSCC by two folds. This study shows the possibility of lignin as a precursor of NSCC cathode catalyst for PEMFC.

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Kannari, N. , Takigami, M. , Maie, T. , Honda, H. , Kusadokoro, S. and Ozaki, J. (2013) Nanoshell-Containing Carbon Cathode Catalyst for Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell from Herbaceous Plants Lignin. Smart Grid and Renewable Energy, 4, 10-15. doi: 10.4236/sgre.2013.47A002.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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