Novel electrode materials for hydrogen generation and supercapacitors in alkaline electrolyte
It is clear that global energy trends continue towards renewable methods and materials to alleviate or eliminate environmental and economic stresses caused by the use of traditional fossil fuels. Two alternative energy technologies include hydrogen gas based ‘burning’ systems (fuel cells and H2 internal combustion engines) and electrochemical capacitors (commonly referred to as supercapacitors). Currently, these technologies are either too expensive or have room for improvement (in the case of the former and latter, respectively) to be competitive with fossil fuels. Our laboratories have tackled these technologies from two angles: development of (i) electrocatalyst materials for H2 generation and (ii) electrode materials for supercapacitors, both based on nickel, a relatively inexpensive metal. Both of these techniques are accomplished through a modular approach using novel nanomaterials. Multiwall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) serve as a high-area scaffold onto which Ni nanoparticles can be deposited. This project will highlight how these novel materials are synthesized and present the electrochemical performance data obtained so far.
NSERC CGS-D3: 2012 – 2015
Les Vadaz Engineering Fellowship: 2011 – 2014
William H. Gauvin Fellowship: 2011 – 2014
Ph.D. candidate in Chemical Engineering at McGill University (2011-present)
M.Sc. in Physics from Dalhousie University (2009-2011)
B.Sc. in Physics with Honours from Dalhousie University (2005-2009)
M.A. McArthur, L. Jorge, S. Coulombe, and S. Omanovic, Synthesis and characterization of novel 3D Ni nanoparticle/carbon nanotube cathodes for hydrogen reduction in alkaline electrolyte, J. Power Sources 266 365 (2014).
I. Ali, M. McArthur, N. Hordy, S. Coulombe, and S. Omanovic, Electrochemical regeneration of the cofactor NADH employing a carbon nanofibers cathode, Int. J. Electrochem. Sci. 7 7675 (2012).
M.A. McArthur*, S. Coulombe, and S. Omanoivc, Hydrogen production by alkaline electrolysis of water using novel multiwall carbon nanotube/Ni nanoparticle cathodes, 2nd Annual Conference on Materials for Energy (EnMat II), 12-16 May 2013, Karlsruhe, Germany.
M.A. McArthur, Z. Bou-Saleh, S. Coulombe, and S. Omanovic*, Enhancement of extrinsic electrocatalytic activity of nickel electrodes for hydrogen production by water electrolysis, The 5th World Hydrogen Technologies Convention (WHTC2013), 25-28 September 2013, Shanghai, China.
S. Coulombe*, N. hordy, L. Jorge, M. McArthur, and L. Vandsburger, Development and integration of plasma processing unit oporations for the synthesis of 3D complex nanostructures and nanomaterials, Plasma Physics, Canadian Association of Physicists (CAP) Congress, 27-31 May 2012, Montréal, QC, CAN.
* – presenting author.