Decoration of active sites to create bimetallic surfaces and its implication for electrochemical processes

Plowman, Blake J., Najdovski, Ilija, Pearson, Andrew, & O'Mullane, Anthony P. (2013) Decoration of active sites to create bimetallic surfaces and its implication for electrochemical processes. Faraday Discussions, 164, pp. 199-218.

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The creation of electrocatalysts based on noble metals has received a significant amount of research interest due to their extensive use as fuel cell catalysts and electrochemical sensors. There have been many attempts to improve the activity of these metals through creating nanostructures, as well as post-synthesis treatments based on chemical, electrochemical, sonochemical and thermal approaches. In many instances these methods result in a material with active surface states, which can be considered to be adatoms or clusters of atoms on the surface that have a low lattice co-ordination number making them more prone to electrochemical oxidation at a wide range of potentials that are significantly less positive than those of their bulk metal counterparts. This phenomenon has been termed pre-monolayer oxidation and has been reported to occur on a range of metallic surfaces. In this work we present findings on the presence of active sites on Pd that has been: evaporated as a thin film; electrodeposited as nanostructures; as well as commercially available Pd nanoparticles supported on carbon. Significantly, advantage is taken of the low oxidation potential of these active sites whereby bimetallic surfaces are created by the spontaneous deposition of Ag from AgNO3 to generate Pd/Ag surfaces. Interestingly this approach does not increase the surface area of the original metal but has significant implications for its further use as an electrode material. It results in the inhibition or promotion of electrocatalytic activity which is highly dependent on the reaction of interest. As a general approach the decoration of active catalytic materials with less active metals for a particular reaction also opens up the possibility of investigating the role of the initially present active sites on the surface and identifying the degree to which they are responsible for electrocatalytic activity.

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ID Code: 64335
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1039/c3fd00015j
ISSN: 1359-6640
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Chemistry, Physics & Mechanical Engineering
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Royal Society of Chemistry
Deposited On: 18 Nov 2013 01:46
Last Modified: 20 May 2014 23:53

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