Nanoparticle catalyst of PtRuAu/C for direct methanol fuel cell anodes was synthesized by a radiolytic process. Its methanol oxidation activity and the electrochemical durability were evaluated by using the linear sweep voltammetry and the cyclic voltammety. The Au addition significantly improved the durability in comparison with PtRu/C catalyst without losing its high activity. The atomic structure was characterized with techniques of the transmission electron microscopy, the X-ray diffraction, the X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy and the X-ray absorption fine structure. These results implied that the arrangement of Pt and Ru atoms in the PtRuAu/C has no significant difference from that without Au, possessing a structure of Pt rich core and PtRu alloy shell. We concluded that the improvement in durability could originate from these PtRu nanoparticles decorated with Au, but not from particles with high Au contents.
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