Mitigating phosphoric acid migration in high temperature polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells with hydrophobic polysilsesquioxane-based binders

Dong Yeop Yoo, Jiyoon Jung, Young Sang Park, Gwan Hyun Choi, Ho Gyu Yoon, Seung Sang Hwang, Albert S. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Cross-linkable organosilsesquioxanes were synthesized for application as catalyst binders in high temperature polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (HT-PEMFCs). Four different organic functional groups were examined including methyl, phenyl, fluoroalkyl, and fluorophenyl and their chemical, physical, surface, and electrochemical properties were characterized. The effect of surface hydrophobicity on a HT-PEMFC membrane electrode assembly was elucidated, showing that organosilsesquioxanes with lower surface tension or higher hydrophobicity towards water and phosphoric acid could be considered as a key parameter for HT-PEMFC performance. Fuel cell tests showed that the pentafluorophenyl-functionalized organosilsesquioxane showed improved H2/air performance (a peak power density of 527 mW cm−2 at 0.4 V) compared to the MEA with PTFE (a peak power density of 425 mW cm−2 at 0.4 V). Short term durability tests for 500 h showed that membrane electrode assemblies with alternative binders were stable and the developed organosilsesquioxane binders are a viable alternative to PTFE-based binders, all the while having additional advantages in vastly simplified ink slurry preparation through increased dispersibility in alcohol-water mixtures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18426-18433
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry A
Volume11
Issue number34
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Aug 7

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Council of Science & Technology (NST) grant by the Korea government (MSIT) (CRC22031-000), National R&D Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science and ICT (2020M3H4A3106354 and 2020M3H4A3106403), and institutional program at KIST (2V09834).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Materials Science

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