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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Electroactive Biofilm Serving as the Green Synthesizer and Stabilizer for in Situ Fabricating 3D Nanopalladium Network: An Efficient Electrocatalyst


Biogenetic nanopalladium (bio-Pd) has attracted increasing attention recently due to its economical and environmental friendly synthesis route. However, traditional bacteria suspensions formed palladium (Sus-Pd) is limited to be the electrochemical catalyst owing to the poor conductivity of bacterial cells. Herein, we demonstrated Pd nanoparticles, synthesized by electroactive Geobacter biofilm, can form a three-dimensional conductive network (EAB-Pd) that is beneficial to the electrons transfer. As a result, the EAB-Pd delivered an over 5-fold increase of current compared to the Sus-Pd in hydrogen evolution and the reductive degradation of nitro-, azo- and chloroaromatics. Superior performance of EAB-Pd was also observed in comparison with the commercial Pd catalyst. A good stability of EAB-Pd has been further confirmed under electrochemical and mechanical stresses as well as through the reuse after over 3 months of storage. This novel proposed method enables the direct electrochemical application of bio-Pd without the previous required cell carbonization and chemical binders.

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