Development of Durable Ultra-low-Pt-loading Catalyst Layers for Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells

Catalyst layers (CLs) determine the performance, durability, and cost of PEM fuel cells. The proposed research will focus on developing durable ultra-low-Pt-loading CLs with high performance and durability. The novel CLs will be fabricated by sputtering Pt onto a thin layer of carbon particles, pre-deposited on the membrane. The CL structure will be investigated by SEM, TEM, and the method of standard porosimetry. Electrochemical and mass transport properties will be characterized by cyclic voltammetry, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, and Loschmidt Cell. The CL performance and durability will be investigated both experimentally and numerically. The intended impact of the proposed research will be on the improvement of cell performance and durability with reduced cost. The benefit to StarPower is in the generation of new knowledge and technology, as well as in the improvement of their products’ competitiveness.

Faculty Supervisor:

Sushanta Mitra


Jian Zhao


StarPower ON Systems Inc.


Engineering - mechanical




University of Waterloo



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