In this contribution a study of electrochemical deposition of cobalt nanoparticles onto aluminium foils is presented. The study is aimed at deriving information required for design and control of cobalt nanoparticles electrodeposition onto aluminium foams employed as catalysts support in ethanol reforming.
A thorough experimental analysis was in this perspective conducted to determine the influence of applied potential and amount of electric charge passing thorough the cell (amount of charge), on number density and size of the synthesized nanoparticles. Chronoamperometric tests were for this purpose performed in a three electrode cell to determine the current responses to variations in the selected operating parameters. Mathematical models accounting for charge transfer and diffusion limitations were implemented to attain fitting of the derived data, leading to an estimation of the number density of active sites. Scanning electron microscopy of cathode aluminium foils was performed to validate the predictions of the employed mathematical models and characterize the influence of the considered operating parameters on the size and number density of the electrodeposited nanoparticles.