Jump to main content
Jump to site search

Issue 3, 2018
Previous Article Next Article

Simple combination of a protic salt and an iron halide: precursor for a Fe, N and S co-doped catalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction in alkaline and acidic media

Author affiliations

Abstract

The major bottleneck for widespread realization of fuel cells has been the usage of precious-metal-based electrocatalysts, such as Pt/C or Pt-alloy/C, at the cathode. Owing to the high cost and limited natural resources of platinum, nonprecious metal catalysts, such as iron-doped carbons, have emerged as promising substitute catalyst materials. Protic salts and protic ionic liquids can provide a simple, quick, and cost-effective approach for fabricating iron-doped carbons without any additives or high-surface-area carbon supports. We demonstrate here the fabrication of an efficient electrocatalyst based on a protic salt, 1,10-phenanthrolinium dihydrogen sulfate ([Phen][2HSO4]), in combination with iron(III) chloride, FeCl3, via nanocasting. A predominantly mesoporous architecture with a narrow pore size distribution was achieved owing to the suitability of the precursors and silica template. The material also exhibited in situ formation of Fe–N bonds in the nitrogen and sulfur co-doped carbons. We found that maximizing the content of this motif was beneficial towards efficient conversion of oxygen into water in alkaline media. The prototype catalyst after post treatment (acid leaching and 2nd carbonization) also exhibited efficient reduction of oxygen in acidic media. The contribution of Fe–N bonds to the observed activity in acidic solution was less than in alkaline solution. The simplicity of the synthesis of the protic salt and the versatility of the ionic liquid platform make this molecular-level carbon precursor a unique candidate for future development of iron doped catalysts for fuel cells.

Graphical abstract: Simple combination of a protic salt and an iron halide: precursor for a Fe, N and S co-doped catalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction in alkaline and acidic media

Back to tab navigation

Supplementary files

Publication details

The article was received on 13 Nov 2017, accepted on 09 Dec 2017 and first published on 11 Dec 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7TA09975D
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018,6, 1138-1149
  •   Request permissions

    Simple combination of a protic salt and an iron halide: precursor for a Fe, N and S co-doped catalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction in alkaline and acidic media

    M. Hoque, S. Zhang, M. L. Thomas, Z. Li, S. Suzuki, A. Ando, M. Yanagi, Y. Kobayashi, K. Dokko and M. Watanabe, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018, 6, 1138
    DOI: 10.1039/C7TA09975D

Search articles by author

Spotlight

Advertisements