It seems that it becomes a significant catalyst for oxygen reduction reactions within metal-air batteries and fuel cells whenever spinach is transformed into carbon nanosheets.
One of the two reactions required by fuel cells and metal-air batteries is the oxygen reduction reaction. Also, the oxygen reduction reaction is the slower of the two reactions and limits the device’s energy output.
Scientists had suspected for a long time that certain carbon materials could catalyze this reaction. But the problem has always been that other carbon catalysts never perform any better than the platinum-based catalysts that have been traditionally used.
The AU scientists desired to discover a different carbon catalyst that was less expensive, less toxic, and more effective. It seemed logical to consider natural resources as a potential candidate. They decided to give spinach a try. “This work suggests that sustainable catalysts can be made for an oxygen reduction reaction from natural resources,” stated Prof. Shouzhong Zou, who is a chemistry professor at AU and the research paper’s lead author
Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction