Low-Cost High-Performance SnO2–Cu Electrodes for Use in Direct Ethanol Fuel Cells

Journal Article
Abdo, Hany S. . 2021
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Crystals - MDPI
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Publication Abstract

The high cost of Pt-based electrode materials limits the commercialization of fuel cells and their subsequent application in renewable energy production. It is thus necessary to develop economical, high-performance electrodes alongside biofuels to reduce the pollution associated with the production of energy. Tin dioxide–copper foil (SnO2–Cu) electrode materials are herein developed using an electrodeposition process. Cyclic voltammetry, chronoamperometry, and potentiodynamic polarization methods are used to electrochemically characterize the electrode materials, with the results revealing that their excellent catalytic properties result in them delivering a high current. The surface morphologies of the developed electrodes are examined using scanning electron microscopy, with the results showing that upon an increase in the deposition time, a finer deposit of SnO2 is formed on the surface of the Cu foil. Consequently, electrochemical oxidation using an enhanced surface area of the material leads to it exhibiting a high current and excellent corrosion resistance. Powder X-ray diffraction was used to confirm the successful depositing of SnO2 on the surface of Cu. The fuel cell fabricated using the SnO2–Cu electrode is promising for use in clean energy generation, as it can be prepared at low cost compared to conventionally used electrodes