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Synthesis and characterization of a perylene derivative and its application as catalyst for ethanol electro-oxidation

Paulo José Sousa Maia, Elizomar Medeiros Barbosa, Maria Leticia Vega, Helder Nunes da Cunha, Elson Almeida de Souza, and Flávio Augusto de Freitas

Federal University of Amazonas, Itacoatiara, Brazil



Abstract: Direct ethanol fuel cells (DEFCs) are considered a viable alternative power source for both stationary and mobile applications. Obstacles to widespread use of DEFCs include the slow electro-oxidation kinetics of ethanol, which has been countered by employing combinations of noble metals and organic compounds as catalysts, e.g., a platinum alloy and perylene-3,4:9,10-tetracarboxylic acid derivatives (PDIs). This study investigates the performance of a PDI functionalized with 4-amino pyridine (PDI1) and subsequently dispersed in Pt/C (Pt/C/PDI1) and PtSn/C (PtSn/C/PDI1). The performance of these catalysts in ethanol electro-oxidation (EOR) was compared to that of metallic catalysts (PtSn/C and Pt/C). The forward potential scan indicated that the peak current densities (j) on the catalysts Pt/C/PDI1 and PtSn/C/PDI1 were ~ 1.7 and ~ 1.3-fold that of Pt/C and ~ 1.8 and ~ 1.4-fold that of PtSn/C. Concerning ethanol oxidation, this indicates that Pt/C/PDI1 and PtSn/C/PDI1 exhibit better catalytic activity in EOR than Pt/C and PtSn/C do.

Keywords: Renewable energy ; Perylene derivatives ; Electro-oxidation ; Direct ethanol fuel cells 

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1007/s11696-017-0344-z


Chemical Papers 72 (4) 1021–1030 (2018)

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