Efficiently electrocatalytic oxidation of benzyl alcohol for energy- saved zinc-air battery using a multifunctional nickel-cobalt alloy electrocatalyst.

Author(s) Liu, G.; Zhao, C.; Wang, G.; Zhang, Y.; Zhang, H.
Journal J Colloid Interface Sci
Date Published 2018 Dec 15

We investigate the possibility of utilizing benzyl alcohol oxidation reaction to replace sluggish oxygen evolution reaction (OER) for the charging process in a rechargeable zinc-air battery, catalyzed by NiCo alloy nanoparticles supported on activated carbon (NiCo/AC) with the multifunctional electrocatalytic activities of the oxygen reduction, oxygen evolution and benzyl alcohol oxidation reactions. As an electrocatalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction (OER), NiCo/AC exhibits superior catalytic activity with an onset potential of 0.85 V (vs. RHE), a half-wave potential of 0.74 V (vs. RHE) and a large limiting current density of 4.65 mA cm at 0.2 V (vs. RHE). Moreover, NiCo/AC also demonstrates the electrocatalytic oxidation activities toward water and benzyl alcohol, moreover, the benzyl alcohol oxidation reaction is more thermodynamically and kinetically favourable with 254 mV smaller overpotential than water oxidation at 10 mA cm. Owing to these advantages, NiCo/AC as air cathode material is assembled into a home-made rechargeable zinc-air battery, resulting an almost 200 mV lower charging voltage at the current density of 50 mA cm in the presence of 0.1 M benzyl alcohol compared to the battery without benzyl alcohol, consequently obtaining 10.5% energy saving at the charging current density of 50 mA cm with high durability.

DOI 10.1016/j.jcis.2018.07.122
ISSN 1095-7103
Citation J Colloid Interface Sci. 2018;532:3746.

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