This paper reports on the quantitative assessment of the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) electrocatalytic activity of electrodeposited Mn/polypyrrole (PPy) nanocomposites for alkaline aqueous solutions, based on the Rotating Disk Electrode (RDE) method and accompanied by structural characterizations relevant to the establishment of structure-function relationships. The characterization of Mn/PPy films is addressed to the following: (i) morphology, as assessed by Field-Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FE-SEM) and Atomic Force Microscope (AFM); (ii) local electrical conductivity, as measured by Scanning Probe Microscopy (SPM); and (iii) molecular structure, accessed by Raman Spectroscopy; these data provide the background against which the electrocatalytic activity can be rationalised. For comparison, the properties of Mn/PPy are gauged against those of graphite, PPy, and polycrystalline-Pt (poly-Pt). Due to the literature lack of accepted protocols for precise catalytic activity measurement at poly-Pt electrode in alkaline solution using the RDE methodology, we have also worked on the obtainment of an intralaboratory benchmark by evidencing some of the time-consuming parameters which drastically affect the reliability and repeatability of the measurement.
1 Jan 2016
Journal of Analytical Methods in Chemistry