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Potential-Dependent Restructuring and Hysteresis in the Structural and Electronic Transformations of Pt/C, Au(Core)-Pt(Shell)/C, and Pd(Core)-Pt(Shell)/C Cathode Catalysts in Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells Characterized by in Situ X‑ray Absorption Fine Structure

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journal contribution
posted on 2013-06-27, 00:00 authored by Shin-ichi Nagamatsu, Takashi Arai, Masakuni Yamamoto, Takuya Ohkura, Hiroyuki Oyanagi, Takayuki Ishizaka, Hajime Kawanami, Tomoya Uruga, Mizuki Tada, Yasuhiro Iwasawa
Potential-dependent transformations of surface structures, Pt oxidation states, and Pt–O bondings in Pt/C, Au­(core)-Pt­(shell)/C (denoted as Au@Pt/C), and Pd­(core)-Pt­(shell)/C (denoted as Pd@Pt/C) cathode catalysts in polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs) during the voltage-stepping processes were characterized by in situ (operando) X-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS). The active surface phase of the Au@Pt/C for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) was suggested to be the Pt3Au alloy layer on Au core nanoparticles, while that of the Pd@Pt/C was the Pt atomic layer on Pd core nanoparticles. The surfaces of the Pt, Au@Pt and Pd@Pt nanoparticles were restructured and disordered at high potentials, which were induced by strong Pt–O bonds, resulting in hysteresis in the structural and electronic transformations in increasing and decreasing voltage operations. The potential-dependent restructuring, disordering, and hysteresis may be relevant to hindered Pt performance, Pt dissolution to the electrolyte, and degradation of the ORR activity.

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