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Applied and fundamental studies of the electrochemical conversion of alcohols and CO2

Grant number: 18/20952-0
Support type:Program for Research on Bioenergy (BIOEN) - Regular Program Grants
Duration: March 01, 2019 - February 28, 2021
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Chemistry
Principal Investigator:Pablo Sebastián Fernández
Grantee:Pablo Sebastián Fernández
Home Institution: Instituto de Química (IQ). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated grant(s):19/07449-0 - Towards a general understanding of the effect of p-block adatoms on the electrooxidation of polyols on platinum in alkaline media, AP.R


In this project, I propose to study fundamental aspects of mainly three reaction of interest for the world and our country: 1) Electrooxidation of ethanol and glycerol and 2) Electroreduction of CO2. We will use Pt-based surfaces: 1) Polycrystalline Pt, Pt single crystals and shape controlled Pt nanoparticles. All the surfaces will be modified by p-block adatoms of the periodic table which have been shown to be an excellent approach to tune the catalyst activity and reaction selectivity. Finally, some materials will be used for the production of electric energy and/or added value products in microfluidic Fuel Cells and Electrolisers. High quality research using these systems needs to monitor (if possible in operando conditions) the reactants and intermediates/products formed during the electrochemical reaction and the catalyst. Thus, in this project, FTIR in situ, RAMAN in situ e HPLC on line will provide information about the generation of products and intermediates in the reactions studied here. Both, absorption and diffraction of X rays in operando conditions and using synchrotron radiation techniques will render morphological and electronic information of the catalyst. Apart from these techniques, when necessary, we will use conventional ex situ characterization techniques as SEM, DRX, XPS, EDS and ICP. This project also included the beginning of a new research line in my group that consist on the use of chiral single crystal electrodes of Pt. This line of research is a recent collaboration between my group and the Electrochemistry Group of Alicante and could help to get further insights about the electrooxidation of alcohols on Pt surfaces. (AU)