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Optimization of electrocatalysts for a direct methanol fuel cell

The project aimed to develop and validate a polymer electrolyte membrane direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC), with a methanol/water mixture being continuously supplied in gaseous or liquid phase to the anode catalyst layer of the membrane electrode assembly (MEA). One of the project's main objectives was the preparation and optimisation of active platinum and platinum/ruthenium catalysts.

Most fuel cells use hydrogen as a fuel to produce electricity. An alternative fuel is methanol, although this requires an expensive and bulky reformer. DMFCs offer the possibility of oxidising methanol directly, leading to lower cost and a more compact system. The project hoped to take the technology one step further by fine-tuning the anode assembly, and the compositions and structure of the platinum catalysts.

Reported by

Universität Bonn Institut für Plasmaphysikaliche Chemie Angewandte Elektrochemie
Romerstrasse, 164
1 Bonn
Germany
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