A high stability AuPd-ZrO 2 -multiwall carbon nanotubes supported-catalyst in a formic acid electro-oxidation reaction

B. Lesiak, A. Malolepszy, M. Mazurkiewicz-Pawlicka, L. Stobinski, L. Kövér, J. Tóth, B. Mierzwa, G. Trykowski

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Catalytic activity and stability in a formic acid electro-oxidation, chemical and structural properties of AuPd nanoparticles deposited (a polyol method) on ZrO 2 decorated functionalised multiwall carbon nanotubes (f-MWCNTs) (a hydrothermal method) were investigated using a fuel cell test, scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM), high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HR-TEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). Non-stoichiometric ZrO x nanoparticles of a cubic phase (C-phase) and average size of 5–10 nm (STEM, HR-TEM), 4.5–5.0 nm (XRD) are anchored by f-MWCNTs carboxylic group through Zr-O-C bonds. Decoration by AuPd nanoparticles leads to ternary Pd/AuPd/Au phase of 6.9 nm crystallite size (XRD) with metallic Pd, oxidised (PdO, PdO 2 ) and Pd-O-Zr phases (XPS). Oxidation/reduction at 300 °C/200 °C leads to nanoparticles sintering, increasing/decreasing Pd surface coverage, oxides/oxygen groups content and ZrO x stoichiometry. Catalysts after oxidation (the largest nanoparticle size, Pd oxides content, ZrO x stoichiometry) showed the highest activity and stability. Activity of AuPd-ZrO 2 /f-MWCNTs catalysts is smaller than that of these catalysts without ZrO 2 , however, the stability is remarkably larger, i.e. AuPd-ZrO 2 /f-MWCNTs > Pd-ZrO 2 /f-MWCNTs > AuPd/f-MWCNTs > Pd/f-MWCNTs, what is attributed to electronic properties of AuPd and role of ZrO x and oxygen functional groups in CO ad desorption and oxidation to CO 2 releasing catalyst active sites.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-297
Number of pages9
JournalApplied Surface Science
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2018


  • Anode side
  • AuPd-ZrO /f-MWCNTs
  • Formic acid electro-oxidation in fuel cell
  • XPS
  • XRD

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films

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