Electrophoretically fabricated nickel/nickel oxides as cost effective nanocatalysts for the oxygen reduction reaction in air-cathode microbial fuel cell

Yun Jeong Choi, Hend Omar Mohamed, Sung Gwan Park, Riyam B. Al Mayyahi, Mujahed Al-Dhaifallah, Hegazy Rezk, Xianghao Ren, Hanchao Yu, Kyu Jung Chae*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

The high cost and limited availability of cathode catalyst materials (most commonly Pt) prevent the large-scale practical application of microbial fuel cells (MFCs). In this study, unique Pt group metal-free (PGM-free) nanocatalysts were fabricated using a simple and cost-effective technique called electrophoretic deposition (EPD) to create a high catalytic oxygen reduction reaction rate (ORR) on the cathode surface of MFCs. Among the tested PGM-free catalysts (Ni, Co, and Cd-based), a maximum power density of 1630.7 mW m−2 was achieved based on nickel nanoparticles. This value was 400% greater than that obtained using a commercial Pt catalyst under the same conditions. This result was due to the uniform deposition of a thin layer of Ni/NiOx nanoparticles on the cathode, which improved electrical conductivity, catalytic activity, and long-term stability while reducing electron transfer resistance. The fabricated PGM-free catalysts significantly improved MFC performance and accelerated ORR induced by the novel layered morphology of metal/metal oxide nanoparticles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5960-5970
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Volume45
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 21 2020

Keywords

  • Electrophoretic deposition
  • Metal oxide
  • Microbial fuel cells
  • Nanocatalysts
  • Oxygen reduction reaction
  • Pt-group-metal-free

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology

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