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Issue 110, 2016, Issue in Progress
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Green synthesis of Si–GQD nanocomposites as cost-effective catalysts for oxygen reduction reaction

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Abstract

Hybrid silicon nanosheets (NSs)–graphene quantum dot nanocomposites (Si–GQD NCs) were prepared from a mixture of GQDs and Si NSs in ethanol at 25 °C for 2 h and used as a catalyst for oxygen reduction reactions (ORR) in direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs). GQDs were prepared from fenugreek seed extracts (300 °C, 8 h) and wrinkled Si NSs were obtained from pyrolysis of rice husks (700 °C, 2 h). The Si–GQD NCs fabricated glassy carbon electrode (GCE) has greater electrocatalytic activity for ORR in comparison to Si NSs and GQDs modified GCEs, showing the synergistic effect provided by Si NSs and GQDs. The GQDs enhance O2 adsorption and ORR activity, while Si NSs function as a support to increase charge transfer. Additionally, high surface area and the wrinkled structure of Si NSs allow efficient mass transfer, leading to greater ORR activity. The onset potential of the Si–GQD NC electrode is −0.33 V (versus Ag/AgCl) with a current density of 2.61 ± 0.27 mA cm−2, showing greater electrocatalytic activity. Furthermore, the Si–GQD NC electrode exhibits greater tolerance against methanol and carbon monoxide poisoning than the Pt/C electrode. The environmentally-friendly, active, stable and inexpensive Si–GQD NCs hold great potential for DMFCs.

Graphical abstract: Green synthesis of Si–GQD nanocomposites as cost-effective catalysts for oxygen reduction reaction

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Publication details

The article was received on 26 Sep 2016, accepted on 07 Nov 2016 and first published on 07 Nov 2016


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C6RA23892K
Citation: RSC Adv., 2016,6, 108941-108947
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    Green synthesis of Si–GQD nanocomposites as cost-effective catalysts for oxygen reduction reaction

    P. Roy, R. Ravindranath, A. P. Periasamy, C. Lien, C. Liang and H. Chang, RSC Adv., 2016, 6, 108941
    DOI: 10.1039/C6RA23892K

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