The H2S-tolerance of Palladium–Copper nanoparticle catalysts supported on carbon black employed on PEMFC anodes operating on H2S-contaminated anode feeding streams is described. The anode feeding consists of 8% H2, ∼2% N2 (in vol.), and 8 ppm H2S. Catalyst performances were evaluated by estimating the cell potential reduction due to H2S contamination through lifetime tests. It is found that the H2S-tolerance of PdCu catalysts depends on the concentration of copper, as confirmed by a catalyst pre-leaching procedure. This methodology is employed in order to remove copper atoms from the catalyst surface, which is confirmed by energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction.Lifetime plots of X-anode-based PEMFCs (X = catalyst) depicting them overpotential during the exposure to 8 ppm H2S in the fuel stream. Cell current density: 37 mA cm−2, cell temperature: 8 °C, membrane Nafion™: N117. Highlights: New PEMFC anode catalysts are synthesized based on PdCu. Catalysts present tolerance to hydrogen sulfide. H2S-tolerance depends on catalyst copper concentration. Noble metal surface-enriched catalysts are more susceptible to H2S. H2S-contaminated PdCu-based PEMFC recovers its performance through air cleaning.image.
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