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Graphitic Carbon Nitride–Nickel Catalyst: From Material Characterization to Efficient Ethanol Electrooxidation

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journal contribution
posted on 21.04.2020, 15:45 by Agnieszka Lewalska-Graczyk, Piotr Pieta, Gabriella Garbarino, Guido Busca, Marcin Holdynski, Grzegorz Kalisz, Anna Sroka-Bartnicka, Robert Nowakowski, Mu Naushad, Manoj B. Gawande, Radek Zbořil, Izabela S. Pieta
Graphitic carbon nitride (gCN­(H)) is a semiconductor with high mechanical and thermal stability which provides good dispersion of metal particles. As it is resistant to corrosion, it constitutes an alternative to carbon black as a catalyst support in polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), e.g., in alcohol oxidation reactions. In this research work, gCN (H)-supported catalyst has been characterized by spectroscopic (UV–vis, IR, Raman) and microscopy techniques (SEM, TEM, AFM) in order to gain deeper understanding of the relationship between material properties and electrochemical activity. Ni-doped graphitic carbon nitride (Ni/gCN­(H)) was tested in electrooxidation of ethanol demonstrating comparatively high peak current density and interesting photocatalytic properties. The obtained results suggest that the improvement of the activity and selectivity of Ni-modified gCN­(H) can be related to the chemical and electronic material modification, while the sample morphology and topology is preserved. Metal–support interactions account for the high photocatalytic activity, superior to that of the Pt counterpart.