In Situ XAS Studies of Core-Shell PEM Fuel Cell Catalysts: The Opportunities and Challenges

Russell, Andrea E.; Tessier, Beatrice; Wise, Anna; Rose, Abigail; Price, Stephen W.; Richardson, P. W.; Ball, Sarah; Theobald, Brian; Thompsett, David and Crabb, Eleanor M. (2011). In Situ XAS Studies of Core-Shell PEM Fuel Cell Catalysts: The Opportunities and Challenges. ECS transactions, 41(1) pp. 55–67.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1149/1.3635543

Abstract

Core-shell electrocatalysts are of increased interest in PEM fuel cells as a means of improving activity and reducing costs. In situ x-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) provides a unique opportunity to provide characterization of the structure of such materials under operating conditions, enabling the effects of the electrochemical environment on the structures to be explored. However, such measurements present numerous challenges in terms of both data collection and analysis. Here we present two case studies that illustrate both the opportunities and challenges; (i) the modification of a Pt catalyst by Ru and the potential dependent formation of a surface alloy and (ii) a Pt shell - Pd core catalyst with varying shell thickness.

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