Prof. Yawen Tang and Dr. Lin Xu published their collaborative work in the journal of CATALYSIS SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY (201708,7(15),3355-3360)
Metal phosphides (M-P) have recently emerged as highly active, low-cost alternatives to noble metals for all kinds of electrocatalytic reactions. However, the synthesis of M-P catalysts with high P contents is commonly laborious and involves multiple synthetic steps. Herein, a facile and straightforward white phosphorus (P-4) derived reduction method is reported to fabricate ternary palladium-gold-phosphorus (PdAu-P) electrocatalysts. The resultant PdAu-P sample shows outstanding electrocatalytic activity (specific and mass activity), long-term stability and enhanced COads anti-poisoning ability compared with its counterparts, including the PdAu sample and the commercial Pd black catalyst for methanol oxidation reaction (MOR) in alkaline medium. Structural advantages (high P contents and small particle-sizes) and potential synergistic effects (electronic and geometric effect) among various elements (Pd, Au and P) contribute to such impressive MOR performance of the ternary PdAu-P electrocatalyst. The synthetic strategy presented here offers a promising platform for the fundamental studies of the fabrication of both metal phosphides with high P contents and high-performance electrocatalysts for applications in direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs).