Research Plan: Fuel Research

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Research plan: Fuel research


Title: Bio-inspired fuel (H2) research using bioinorganic and organometallic catalysis

Specific aim

The goals of this research plan is to (1) synthesize electrocatalysts based on active sites of enzymes (Hydrogenase) for hydrogen recycling; (2) do catalytic studies to understand the suitability of the catalysts; (3) focus on the rational design of fuel cell using newly made electrocatalysts; (4) develop a strategy to attach the catalysts to the electrode surface; (4) setup collaboration with engineering and other departments to meet fuel cell development goal; (5) bring financial support from industries and national funding agencies.

H2 as a fuel and challenges

One of the major research challenges of this century is the production of enough and sustainable supply of energy.R In this context, hydrogen fuel cell technology has been advanced and faced many challenges. Therefore, several companies are working hard to develop technologies that can efficiently exploit the potential of hydrogen energy and offer cheap products. In addition to that, many academic scientists are also involved in the exploration of suitable catalysts for the generation of hydrogen, its use and its storage material.R

Many scientists have heralded H2 as ‘fuel of the future’ due to its potential in fuel cell research.R Reaction of H2 with O2 releases a large amount of energy, and most mixtures explode upon ignition. In technology, some important advantages of H2 are (i) its high specific enthalpy or reaction with O2 per gram (Eq. 1.) (ii) that the reaction H2 with O2 is ignited simply by a spark and produces only water.

2H2(g) + ...

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...face modification of standard Pt catalysts with oxophilic elements such as Ru, Os, Sn, Sb, Pb, Mo, and W helps improve the CO tolerance of low-temperature fuel cell systems which process CO contaminated H2 feed gases at anode. For ORR (oxygen reduction reaction) Se-modified Ru-C catalysts have recently been applied by Lopnov et al. (..) and Zaikovsii et al. Ru-C catalyst without any stabilizing agent was prepared via the reduction of Ru3+ ions in THF with LiB(C2H5)3H. As a modifier H2SeO3 (SeO2 dissolved in water) was added. Subsequent annealing of the Se+Ru-C catalysts at 200oC led to the oxidation of Ru and finally formed a very effective RuxSey-C catalyst system for ORR. It is discovered that Se inhibits surface oxidation, which considerably improves the catalytic activity of the basic Ru-C material.

Synthetic plan for electro nanocatalysts.
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