Operando carbon corrosion measurements in fuel cells using boron-doped carbon supports

Alisa Kozhushner, Oran Lori, David A. Cullen, Hilah C. Honig, Yeela Persky, Leigh Peles-Strahl, Qing Li, Lior Elbaz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Carbonaceous materials are the most common catalyst supports in proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFCs), yet their corrosion is one of the limiting factors in achieving high durability. Herein, we doped carbon supports with boron (B) to increase the corrosion-resistance of the support. Two types of B-doped carbons were synthesized and studied as platinum support materials. They varied in their morphologies, surface areas, and the types of boron species. The durability of Pt/B-doped carbon catalysts was investigated using the US-DOE catalysts’ supports accelerated stress test (AST) and a mass-spectrometer connected to the fuel cell effluent stream to quantify the mass of corroded carbon support in operando. The addition of boron to the carbon increased the stability of Pt catalysts in long-term usage of PEMFC. After 4000 AST cycles, more than 50 % of initial current density was preserved for the boron-containing systems, while less than 30 % of it remained with Vulcan carbon (Pt/V). Also, the Pt/B-doped carbon samples demonstrated better electrochemical active surface area (ECSA) stability when compared to Pt/V. Carbon loss measurements showed that B-doped carbons have higher resistance to electrochemical corrosion than unmodified carbon. Specifically, the substitutional boron-doped carbon demonstrated an extremely high stability and low corrosion rate.

Original languageEnglish
Article number119290
StatePublished - 30 Jun 2024

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