Platinum electrocatalysts were prepared using PtCl4 as a starting material and 1-decylamine, N,N-dimethyldecylamine, 1-dodecylamine, N,N-dimethyldodecylamine, 1-hexadecylamine, and 1-octadecylamine as surfactants. These surfactants were used for the first time in this synthesis to determine whether the primary and/or tertiary structure and/or chain length of the surfactants, affects the size and/or activity of the catalysts in C1–C3 alcohol electro-oxidation reactions. Electrochemical measurements (cyclic voltammetry and chronoamperometry) indicated that the highest electrocatalytic performance was observed for the Pt nanocatalysts that were stabilized by N,N-dimethyldecylamine, and this has a tertiary amine structure with a short chain length (R = C10H21). The high performance may be due to the high electrochemical surface area, Pt(0)/Pt(IV) ratio, %Pt utility, and roughness factor (Rf). X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, atomic force microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy were used to determine the parameters that affect the catalytic activities.
Alcohol oxidation Direct alcohol fuel cells Platinum nanoparticles Electrocatalysts Carbon support
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The authors gratefully acknowledge TÜBİTAK (Türkiye Bilimsel ve Teknik Araştırma Kurumu, Grant 111T162) for financial support and the Central Laboratory of the Middle East Technical University for acquiring XPS, TEM, and elemental analyses. The authors also thank Dr. Michael W. Pitcher for editing and proofreading this manuscript.