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Iron and Nickel Phthalocyanine‐Modified Nanocarbon Materials as Cathode Catalysts for Anion‐Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells and Zinc‐Air Batteries

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Iron and nickel phthalocyanines along with different carbon supports, i.e., multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT), graphene, carbide-derived carbon, Vulcan carbon, and mesoporous carbon (MC, from Pajarito Powder, LLC), are used to prepare six bimetallic (Fe, Ni) N-doped carbon-based catalysts. The aim of this work is to investigate the electrocatalytic activity of bimetal phthalocyanine-modified nanocarbon catalysts, e.g. the effect of carbon supports on the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) and oxygen evolution reaction (OER), including the anion-exchange membrane fuel cell (AEMFC) and rechargeable zinc-air battery (RZAB) configuration. The catalysts exhibit excellent electrocatalytic activity as exemplified by their half-wave potential ( E 1/2 ) for ORR and the potential at which the OER current density reaches 10 mA cm ‒2 ( E j =10 ), but the best performing catalysts are FeNiN-MC ( E 1/2 = 0.88 V, E j =10 = 1.58 V) and FeNiN-MWCNT ( E 1/2 = 0.87 V, E j =10 = 1.59 V). In AEMFC analyses, FeNiN-MWCNT provides peak power density ( P max ) of 406 mW cm ‒2 , slightly higher than that of FeNiN-MC ( P max = 386 mW cm ‒2 ). Both catalysts exhibit a good RZAB performance ( P max of 85 mW cm ‒2 for FeNiN-MWCNT). The assembled RZABs run stably for 48 h without any significant loss of performance.

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