Global Research Center for Environment and Energy based on Nanomaterials Science

National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS)

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Hokkaido University


Development of bio-inspired non-platinum electrocatalysts for fuel cell

Reactions occurring at fuel cells are similar to those in breathing. By reduction of dioxygen molecules, organic naterials are oxidized to CO2 in breathing, but dihydrogen molecules are oxidized to H2O in fuel cells. Thus, metal enzymes associating with breathing can be considered as natural catalysts to drive oxygen reduction reaction. In this study, bio-inspired highly active non-platinum group metals (PGMs) electrocatalysts will be developed.

Structure of molecule and its reaction center of Laccase which is natural catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction.

Molecular structure of bi-copper complex inspired by Laccase and in situ XANES spectra of the complex under electrochemical environment.