News ID: 132476
Published: 0314 GMT December 08, 2015

MOFs prove efficient in optimizing hydrogen for fuel cells

MOFs prove efficient in optimizing hydrogen for fuel cells

Iranian researchers from University of Mazandaran studied the application of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) to improve and facilitate the production of hydrogen as the fuel for fuel cells.

Regarding to the human’s increasing need to use an alternative energy source to fossil fuels, fuel cells seem to be a proper choice. The chemical energy turns into electrical energy in a fuel cell. As hydrogen molecule has high energy density and is also known as ‘green energy’, it can be a suitable fuel for hydrogen/oxygen fuel cell.

The study proves the positive effect of MOFs and its results can help production of green energies and decrease the cost of fuel cell production, Mehr News Agency said.

Professor Jahanbakhsh Raouf, the principal investigator and the project executor, said, “Hydrogen storage in high pressure capsules is a big challenge. A suggestion to overcome this problem is the electrochemical production of hydrogen at the entrance of fuel in a fuel cell. However, this process exhibits slow electron transfer kinetics at the surface of normal electrodes.

“The aim of the research was to modify the electrode surface by using nanomaterials to increase the kinetics of hydrogen evolution reaction (HER). In fact, when the electrode surface is modified, the rate of electron transfer increases on the surface.

“In this research, the objective has been fulfilled by using the nanocomposite of copper/nanoporous carbon derived from MOF-199.”

Based on the results, the presence of the nanocomposite on the surface of the modified electrode improves electron transfer in hydrogen evolution reaction. In other words, the modified electrode enables the faster and simpler electrochemical production of hydrogen as a green fuel to be used in hydrogen/oxygen fuel cells. In addition, this electrode reduces production cost due to the lack of the use of the expensive platinum metal in the electrode structure.

“Production of electrical energy as green energy by using fuel cells, including hydrogen/oxygen fuel cell, which results in the production of water as the final product in the reaction, does not pollute the environment at all,” he added.



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