Chemistry Department Seminar

"Carbon Nanotubes as PEM Fuel Cell Catalyst Support"

Presented by Dr. Yangchuan Xing, Missouri University of Science and Technology

Wednesday, April 22, 2009, 11:00 am — Room 300, Bldg. 555

Fuel cells are electrochemical devices that convert chemical energy directly into electricity in highly efficient and environmentally friendly processes. Although fuel cells were invented one and a half centuries ago, only recently have they become economically competitive with conventional power systems. Among various fuel cells, proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells are expected to become a viable future power source due to their low operating temperatures, high power density, and rapid response to varying loads. Micro PEM fuel cells may also compete with lithium-ion batteries to provide long-lasting power for portable electronics.
During the past two decades, enormous efforts have been made to advance PEM fuel cell technology. However, new materials are still in need to resolve some technical problems in PEM fuel cells before they can become a commercial power source. One material that has been actively explored in recent years is carbon nanotubes. In this talk, I will give an overview of carbon nanotube applications in PEM fuel cells. I will then present our work on functionalization of carbon nanotubes and preparation of catalyst nanoparticles on them. I will also present our work on the electrochemical durability of carbon nanotubes and new electrode design with carbon nanotube arrays.

Hosted by: Radoslav Adzic

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