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Journal of Spectroscopy
Volume 2015, Article ID 329730, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/329730
Research Article

Raman Spectroscopy and Electrochemical Investigations of Pt Electrocatalyst Supported on Carbon Prepared through Plasma Pyrolysis of Natural Gas

1Departamento de Química, Centro de Ciências Exatas, UFES, Avenida Fernando Ferrari, 514 Goiabeiras, 29075-910 Vitória, ES, Brazil
2Departamento de Morfologia, Centro de Ciências da Saúde, UFES, Campus de Maruípe, 29049-999 Vitória, ES, Brazil

Received 17 March 2015; Revised 8 July 2015; Accepted 15 July 2015

Academic Editor: Christophe Dujardin

Copyright © 2015 Tereza Cristina Santos Evangelista et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Physicochemical and electrochemical characterisations of Pt-based electrocatalysts supported on carbon (Vulcan carbon, C1, and carbon produced by plasma pyrolysis of natural gas, C2) toward ethanol electrooxidation were investigated. The Pt20/C180 and Pt20/C280 electrocatalysts were prepared by thermal decomposition of polymeric precursors at 350°C. The electrochemical and physicochemical characterisations of the electrocatalysts were performed by means of X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscope (TEM), Raman scattering, cyclic voltammetry, and chronoamperometry tests. The XRD results show that the Pt-based electrocatalysts present platinum metallic which is face-centered cubic structure. The results indicate that the Pt20/C180 electrocatalyst has a smaller particle size (10.1–6.9 nm) compared with the Pt20/C280 electrocatalyst; however, the Pt20/C280 particle sizes are similar (12.8–10.4 nm) and almost independent of the reflection planes, which suggests that the Pt crystallites grow with a radial shape. Raman results reveal that both Vulcan carbon and plasma carbon are graphite-like materials consisting mostly of sp2 carbon. Cyclic voltammetry and chronoamperometry data obtained in this study indicate that the deposition of Pt on plasma carbon increases its electrocatalytic activity toward ethanol oxidation reaction.