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Sample records for fuel cell cathode

  1. Cathode for molten carbonate fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Kaun, Thomas D.; Mrazek, Franklin C.

    1990-01-01

    A porous sintered cathode for a molten carbonate fuel cell and method of making same, the cathode including a skeletal structure of a first electronically conductive material slightly soluble in the electrolyte present in the molten carbonate fuel cell covered by fine particles of a second material of possibly lesser electronic conductivity insoluble in the electrolyte present in the molten carbonate fuel cell, the cathode having a porosity in the range of from about 60% to about 70% at steady-state cell operating conditions consisting of both macro-pores and micro-pores.

  2. Alternative cathodes for molten carbonate fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Bloom, I.; Lanagan, M.; Roche, M.F.; Krumpelt, M.

    1996-02-01

    Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) is developing advanced cathodes for pressurized operation of the molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC). The present cathode, lithiated nickel oxide, tends to transport to the anode of the MCFC, where it is deposited as metallic nickel. The rate of transport increases with increasing CO{sub 2} pressure. This increase is due to an increased solubility of nickel oxide (NiO) in the molten carbonate electrolyte. An alternative cathode is lithium cobaltate (LiCoO{sub 2})-Solid solutions of LiCoO{sub 2} in LiFeO{sub 2} show promise for long-lived cathode materials. We have found that small additions of LiCoO{sub 2} to LiFeO{sub 2} markedly decrease the resistivity of the cathode material. Cells containing the LiCoO{sub 2}-LiFeO{sub 2} cathodes have stable performance for more than 2100 h of operation and display lower cobalt migration.

  3. Fuel cell having dual electrode anode or cathode

    DOEpatents

    Findl, Eugene

    1985-01-01

    A fuel cell that is characterized by including a dual electrode anode that is operable to simultaneously electro-oxidize a gaseous fuel and a liquid fuel. In alternative embodiments, a fuel cell having a single electrode anode is provided with a dual electrode cathode that is operable to simultaneously reduce a gaseous oxidant and a liquid oxidant to electro-oxidize a fuel supplied to the cell.

  4. Fuel cell having dual electrode anode or cathode

    DOEpatents

    Findl, E.

    1984-04-10

    A fuel cell that is characterized by including a dual electrode anode that is operable to simultaneously electro-oxidize a gaseous fuel and a liquid fuel. In alternative embodiments, a fuel cell having a single electrode anode is provided with a dual electrode cathode that is operable to simultaneously reduce a gaseous oxidant and a liquid oxidant to electro-oxidize a fuel supplied to the cell.

  5. Tolerant chalcogenide cathodes of membraneless micro fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Gago, Aldo Saul; Gochi-Ponce, Yadira; Feng, Yong-Jun; Esquivel, Juan Pablo; Sabaté, Neus; Santander, Joaquin; Alonso-Vante, Nicolas

    2012-08-01

    The most critical issues to overcome in micro direct methanol fuel cells (μDMFCs) are the lack of tolerance of the platinum cathode and fuel crossover through the polymer membrane. Thus, two novel tolerant cathodes of a membraneless microlaminar-flow fuel cell (μLFFC), Pt(x)S(y) and CoSe(2), were developed. The multichannel structure of the system was microfabricated in SU-8 polymer. A commercial platinum cathode served for comparison. When using 5 M CH(3)OH as the fuel, maximum power densities of 6.5, 4, and 0.23 mW cm(-2) were achieved for the μLFFC with Pt, Pt(x)S(y), and CoSe(2) cathodes, respectively. The Pt(x)S(y) cathode outperformed Pt in the same fuel cell when using CH(3)OH at concentrations above 10 M. In a situation where fuel crossover is 100 %, that is, mixing the fuel with the reactant, the maximum power density of the micro fuel cell with Pt decreased by 80 %. However, for Pt(x)S(y) this decrease corresponded to 35 % and for CoSe(2) there was no change in performance. This result is the consequence of the high tolerance of the chalcogenide-based cathodes. When using 10 M HCOOH and a palladium-based anode, the μLFFC with a CoSe(2) cathode achieved a maxiumum power density of 1.04 mW cm(-2). This micro fuel cell does not contain either Nafion membrane or platinum. We report, for the first time, the evaluation of Pt(x)S(y)- and CoSe(2)-based cathodes in membraneless micro fuel cells. The results suggest the development of a novel system that is not size restricted and its operation is mainly based on the selectivity of its electrodes.

  6. Molten carbonate fuel cell cathode with mixed oxide coating

    DOEpatents

    Hilmi, Abdelkader; Yuh, Chao-Yi

    2013-05-07

    A molten carbonate fuel cell cathode having a cathode body and a coating of a mixed oxygen ion conductor materials. The mixed oxygen ion conductor materials are formed from ceria or doped ceria, such as gadolinium doped ceria or yttrium doped ceria. The coating is deposited on the cathode body using a sol-gel process, which utilizes as precursors organometallic compounds, organic and inorganic salts, hydroxides or alkoxides and which uses as the solvent water, organic solvent or a mixture of same.

  7. Effects of Humidity on Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Cathodes

    SciTech Connect

    Hardy, John S.; Stevenson, Jeffry W.; Singh, Prabhakar; Mahapatra, Manoj K.; Wachsman, E. D.; Liu, Meilin; Gerdes, Kirk R.

    2015-03-17

    This report summarizes results from experimental studies performed by a team of researchers assembled on behalf of the Solid-state Energy Conversion Alliance (SECA) Core Technology Program. Team participants employed a variety of techniques to evaluate and mitigate the effects of humidity in solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathode air streams on cathode chemistry, microstructure, and electrochemical performance.

  8. Nanofiber Scaffold for Cathode of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell

    SciTech Connect

    Zhi, Mingjia; Mariani, Nicholas; Gemmen, Randall; Gerdes, Kirk; Wu, Nianqiang

    2010-10-01

    A high performance solid oxide fuel cell cathode using the yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) nanofibers scaffold with the infiltrated La1-xSrxMnO3 (LSM) shows an enhanced catalytic activity toward oxygen reduction. Such a cathode offers a continuous path for charge transport and an increased number of triple-phase boundary sites.

  9. Microbial Fuel Cell Performance with a Pressurized Cathode Chamber

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) power densities are often constrained by the oxygen reduction reaction rate on the cathode electrode. One important factor for this is the normally low solubility of oxygen in the aqueous cathode solution creating mass transport limitations, which hinder oxygen reduction a...

  10. Cathode side hardware for carbonate fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Xu, Gengfu; Yuh, Chao-Yi

    2011-04-05

    Carbonate fuel cathode side hardware having a thin coating of a conductive ceramic formed from one of Perovskite AMeO.sub.3, wherein A is at least one of lanthanum and a combination of lanthanum and strontium and Me is one or more of transition metals, lithiated NiO (Li.sub.xNiO, where x is 0.1 to 1) and X-doped LiMeO.sub.2, wherein X is one of Mg, Ca, and Co.

  11. Cathode preparation method for molten carbonate fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Smith, James L.; Sim, James W.; Kucera, Eugenia H.

    1988-01-01

    A method of preparing a porous cathode structure for use in a molten carbonate fuel cell begins by providing a porous integral plaque of sintered nickel oxide particles. The nickel oxide plaque can be obtained by oxidizing a sintered plaque of nickel metal or by compacting and sintering finely divided nickel oxide particles to the desired pore structure. The porous sintered nickel oxide plaque is contacted with a lithium salt for a sufficient time to lithiate the nickel oxide structure and thus enhance its electronic conductivity. The lithiation can be carried out either within an operating fuel cell or prior to assembling the plaque as a cathode within the fuel cell.

  12. Cathode-preparation method for molten-carbonate fuel cell

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, J.L.; Sim, J.W.; Kucera, E.H.

    1982-01-28

    A method of preparing a porous cathode structure for use in a molten carbonate fuel cell begins by providing a porous integral plaque of sintered nickel oxide particles. The nickel oxide plaque can be obtained by oxidizing a sintered plaque of nickel metal or by compacting and sintering finely divided nickel oxide particles to the desired pore structure. The porous sintered nickel oxide plaque is contacted with a lithium salt for a sufficient time to lithiate the nickel oxide structure and thus enhance its electronic conductivity. The lithiation can be carried out either within an operating fuel cell or prior to assembling the plaque as a cathode within the fuel cell.

  13. Polymer coatings as separator layers for microbial fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watson, Valerie J.; Saito, Tomonori; Hickner, Michael A.; Logan, Bruce E.

    2011-03-01

    Membrane separators reduce oxygen flux from the cathode into the anolyte in microbial fuel cells (MFCs), but water accumulation and pH gradients between the separator and cathode reduces performance. Air cathodes were spray-coated (water-facing side) with anion exchange, cation exchange, and neutral polymer coatings of different thicknesses to incorporate the separator into the cathode. The anion exchange polymer coating resulted in greater power density (1167 ± 135 mW m-2) than a cation exchange coating (439 ± 2 mW m-2). This power output was similar to that produced by a Nafion-coated cathode (1114 ± 174 mW m-2), and slightly lower than the uncoated cathode (1384 ± 82 mW m-2). Thicker coatings reduced oxygen diffusion into the electrolyte and increased coulombic efficiency (CE = 56-64%) relative to an uncoated cathode (29 ± 8%), but decreased power production (255-574 mW m-2). Electrochemical characterization of the cathodes ex situ to the MFC showed that the cathodes with the lowest charge transfer resistance and the highest oxygen reduction activity produced the most power in MFC tests. The results on hydrophilic cathode separator layers revealed a trade off between power and CE. Cathodes coated with a thin coating of anion exchange polymer show promise for controlling oxygen transfer while minimally affecting power production.

  14. Durability and performance optimization of cathode materials for fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colon-Mercado, Hector Rafael

    The primary objective of this dissertation is to develop an accelerated durability test (ADT) for the evaluation of cathode materials for fuel cells. The work has been divided in two main categories, namely high temperature fuel cells with emphasis on the Molten Carbonate Fuel Cell (MCFC) cathode current collector corrosion problems and low temperature fuel cells in particular Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell (PEMFC) cathode catalyst corrosion. The high operating temperature of MCFC has given it benefits over other fuel cells. These include higher efficiencies (>50%), faster electrode kinetics, etc. At 650°C, the theoretical open circuit voltage is established, providing low electrode overpotentials without requiring any noble metal catalysts and permitting high electrochemical efficiency. The waste heat is generated at sufficiently high temperatures to make it useful as a co-product. However, in order to commercialize the MCFC, a lifetime of 40,000 hours of operation must be achieved. The major limiting factor in the MCFC is the corrosion of cathode materials, which include cathode electrode and cathode current collector. In the first part of this dissertation the corrosion characteristics of bare, heat-treated and cobalt coated titanium alloys were studied using an ADT and compared with that of state of the art current collector material, SS 316. PEMFCs are the best choice for a wide range of portable, stationary and automotive applications because of their high power density and relatively low-temperature operation. However, a major impediment in the commercialization of the fuel cell technology is the cost involved due to the large amount of platinum electrocatalyst used in the cathode catalyst. In an effort to increase the power and decrease the cathode cost in polymer electrolyte fuel cell (PEMFC) systems, Pt-alloy catalysts were developed to increase its activity and stability. Extensive research has been conducted in the area of new alloy development and

  15. Cathodic and anodic biofilms in Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Cristiani, P; Carvalho, M L; Guerrini, E; Daghio, M; Santoro, C; Li, B

    2013-08-01

    The oxygen reduction due to microaerophilic biofilms grown on graphite cathodes (biocathodes) in Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cells (SCMFCs) is proved and analysed in this paper. Pt-free cathode performances are compared with those of different platinum-loaded cathodes, before and after the biofilm growth. Membraneless SCMFCs were operating in batch-mode, filled with wastewater. A substrate (fuel) of sodium acetate (0.03 M) was periodically added and the experiment lasted more than six months. A maximum of power densities, up to 0.5 W m(-2), were reached when biofilms developed on the electrodes and the cathodic potential decreased (open circuit potential of 50-200 mV vs. SHE). The power output was almost constant with an acetate concentration of 0.01-0.05 M and it fell down when the pH of the media exceeded 9.5, independently of the Pt-free/Pt-loading at the cathodes. Current densities varied in the range of 1-5 Am(-2) (cathode area of 5 cm(2)). Quasi-stationary polarization curves performed with a three-electrode configuration on cathodic and anodic electrodes showed that the anodic overpotential, more than the cathodic one, may limit the current density in the SCMFCs for a long-term operation. PMID:23474690

  16. Multiple cathodic reaction mechanisms in seawater cathodic biofilms operating in sediment microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Babauta, Jerome T; Hsu, Lewis; Atci, Erhan; Kagan, Jeff; Chadwick, Bart; Beyenal, Haluk

    2014-10-01

    In this study, multiple reaction mechanisms in cathodes of sediment microbial fuel cells (SMFCs) were characterized by using cyclic voltammetry and microelectrode measurements of dissolved oxygen and pH. The cathodes were acclimated in SMFCs with sediment and seawater from San Diego Bay. Two limiting current regions were observed with onset potentials of approximately +400 mVAg/AgCl for limiting current I and -120 mVAg/AgCl for limiting current II. The appearance of two catalytic waves suggests that multiple cathodic reaction mechanisms influence cathodic performance. Microscale oxygen concentration measurements showed a zero surface concentration at the electrode surface for limiting current II but not for limiting current I, which allowed us to distinguish limiting current II as the conventional oxygen reduction reaction and limiting current I as a currently unidentified cathodic reaction mechanism. Microscale pH measurements further confirmed these results.

  17. Functionally Graded Cathodes for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    YongMan Choi; Meilin Liu

    2006-09-30

    This DOE SECA project focused on both experimental and theoretical understanding of oxygen reduction processes in a porous mixed-conducting cathode in a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC). Elucidation of the detailed oxygen reduction mechanism, especially the rate-limiting step(s), is critical to the development of low-temperature SOFCs (400 C to 700 C) and to cost reduction since much less expensive materials may be used for cell components. However, cell performance at low temperatures is limited primarily by the interfacial polarization resistances, specifically by those associated with oxygen reduction at the cathode, including transport of oxygen gas through the porous cathode, the adsorption of oxygen onto the cathode surface, the reduction and dissociation of the oxygen molecule (O{sub 2}) into the oxygen ion (O{sup 2-}), and the incorporation of the oxygen ion into the electrolyte. In order to most effectively enhance the performance of the cathode at low temperatures, we must understand the mechanism and kinetics of the elementary processes at the interfaces. Under the support of this DOE SECA project, our accomplishments included: (1) Experimental determination of the rate-limiting step in the oxygen reduction mechanism at the cathode using in situ FTIR and Raman spectroscopy, including surface- and tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS and TERS). (2) Fabrication and testing of micro-patterned cathodes to compare the relative activity of the TPB to the rest of the cathode surface. (3) Construction of a mathematical model to predict cathode performance based on different geometries and microstructures and analyze the kinetics of oxygen-reduction reactions occurring at charged mixed ionic-electronic conductors (MIECs) using two-dimensional finite volume models with ab initio calculations. (4) Fabrication of cathodes that are graded in composition and microstructure to generate large amounts of active surface area near the cathode/electrolyte interface using a

  18. Cathodic oxygen reduction catalyzed by bacteria in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Rabaey, Korneel; Read, Suzanne T; Clauwaert, Peter; Freguia, Stefano; Bond, Philip L; Blackall, Linda L; Keller, Jurg

    2008-05-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) have the potential to combine wastewater treatment efficiency with energetic efficiency. One of the major impediments to MFC implementation is the operation of the cathode compartment, as it employs environmentally unfriendly catalysts such as platinum. As recently shown, bacteria can facilitate sustainable and cost-effective cathode catalysis for nitrate and also oxygen. Here we describe a carbon cathode open to the air, on which attached bacteria catalyzed oxygen reduction. The bacteria present were able to reduce oxygen as the ultimate electron acceptor using electrons provided by the solid-phase cathode. Current densities of up to 2.2 A m(-2) cathode projected surface were obtained (0.303+/-0.017 W m(-2), 15 W m(-3) total reactor volume). The cathodic microbial community was dominated by Sphingobacterium, Acinetobacter and Acidovorax sp., according to 16S rRNA gene clone library analysis. Isolates of Sphingobacterium sp. and Acinetobacter sp. were obtained using H(2)/O(2) mixtures. Some of the pure culture isolates obtained from the cathode showed an increase in the power output of up to three-fold compared to a non-inoculated control, that is, from 0.015+/-0.001 to 0.049+/-0.025 W m(-2) cathode projected surface. The strong decrease in activation losses indicates that bacteria function as true catalysts for oxygen reduction. Owing to the high overpotential for non-catalyzed reduction, oxygen is only to a limited extent competitive toward the electron donor, that is, the cathode. Further research to refine the operational parameters and increase the current density by modifying the electrode surface and elucidating the bacterial metabolism is warranted. PMID:18288216

  19. Functionally graded composite cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, N. T.; Brandon, N. P.; Day, M. J.; Lapeña-Rey, N.

    Functionally graded solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathodes have been prepared from mixtures of strontium-doped lanthanum manganite (LSM) and gadolinia-doped ceria (CGO) using slurry spraying techniques. Similar samples were also prepared from mixtures of LSM and ytrria-stabilised zirconia (YSZ). A current collector comprising a mixture of LSM and strontium-doped lanthanum cobaltite (LSCO) was then applied to both cathode types. Samples were characterised using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). Characterisation using EIS techniques showed that cathodes incorporating CGO into the structure gave improved performance over those fabricated using YSZ. These performance gains were most noticeable as the temperature was decreased towards 700 °C, and were maintained during the testing of three cell membrane electrode assemblies fabricated to the Rolls-Royce design.

  20. Cathode catalyst for primary phosphoric fuel cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Walsh, F.

    1980-01-01

    Alkylation of Vulcan XC-72 provided the most stable bond type for linking CoTAA to the surface of the carbon; this result is based on data obtained by cyclic voltammetry, pulse voltammetry and by release of 14C from bonded CoTAA. Half-cell tests at 100 C in 85% phosphoric acid showed that CoTAA bonded to the surface of carbon (Vulcan XC-72) via an alkylation procedure is a more active catalyst than is platinum based on a factor of two improvement in Tafel slope; dimeric CoTAA has catalytic activity equal to platinum. Half-cell tests also showed that bonded CoTAA catalysts do not suffer a loss in potential when air is used as a fuel rather than oxygen. Commercially available PTFE was shown to be stable for four months in 200 C 85% phosphoric acid based on lack of change in surface wetting properties, IR and physical characteristics. When stressed electrochemically in 150 C 85% phosphoric acid, PTFE also showed no changes after one month.

  1. Improved Cathode Structure for a Direct Methanol Fuel Cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Valdez, Thomas; Narayanan, Sekharipuram

    2005-01-01

    An improved cathode structure on a membrane/electrode assembly has been developed for a direct methanol fuel cell, in a continuing effort to realize practical power systems containing such fuel cells. This cathode structure is intended particularly to afford better cell performance at a low airflow rate. A membrane/electrode assembly of the type for which the improved cathode structure was developed (see Figure 1) is fabricated in a process that includes brush painting and spray coating of catalyst layers onto a polymer-electrolyte membrane and onto gas-diffusion backings that also act as current collectors. The aforementioned layers are then dried and hot-pressed together. When completed, the membrane/electrode assembly contains (1) an anode containing a fine metal black of Pt/Ru alloy, (2) a membrane made of Nafion 117 or equivalent (a perfluorosulfonic acid-based hydrophilic, proton-conducting ion-exchange polymer), (3) a cathode structure (in the present case, the improved cathode structure described below), and (4) the electrically conductive gas-diffusion backing layers, which are made of Toray 060(TradeMark)(or equivalent) carbon paper containing between 5 and 6 weight percent of poly(tetrafluoroethylene). The need for an improved cathode structure arises for the following reasons: In the design and operation of a fuel-cell power system, the airflow rate is a critical parameter that determines the overall efficiency, cell voltage, and power density. It is desirable to operate at a low airflow rate in order to obtain thermal and water balance and to minimize the size and mass of the system. The performances of membrane/electrode assemblies of prior design are limited at low airflow rates. Methanol crossover increases the required airflow rate. Hence, one way to reduce the required airflow rate is to reduce the effect of methanol crossover. Improvement of the cathode structure - in particular, addition of hydrophobic particles to the cathode - has been

  2. Corrosion testing of candidates for the alkaline fuel cell cathode

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singer, Joseph; Fielder, William L.

    1990-01-01

    Current/voltage data have been obtained for specially made corrosion electrodes of some oxides and of gold materials for the purpose of developing a screening test of catalysts and supports for use at the cathode of the alkaline fuel cell. The data consist of measurements of current at fixed potentials and cyclic voltammograms. These data will have to be correlated with longtime performance data in order to evaluate fully this approach to corrosion screening.

  3. Ion exchange membrane cathodes for scalable microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zuo, Yi; Cheng, Shaoan; Logan, Bruce E

    2008-09-15

    One of the main challenges for using microbial fuel cells (MFCs) is developing materials and architectures that are economical and generate high power densities. The performance of two cathodes constructed from two low-cost anion (AEM) and cation (CEM) exchange membranes was compared to that achieved using an ultrafiltration (UF) cathode, when the membranes were made electrically conductive using graphite paint and a nonprecious metal catalyst (CoTMPP). The best performance in single-chamber MFCs using graphite fiber brush anodes was achieved using an AEM cathode with the conductive coating facing the solution, at a catalyst loading of 0.5 mg/cm2 CoTMPP. The maximum power densitywas 449 mW/ m2 (normalized to the projected cathode surface area) or 13.1 W/m3 (total reactor volume), with a Coulombic efficiency up to 70% in a 50 mM phosphate buffer solution (PBS) using acetate. Decreasing the CoTMPP loading by 40-80% reduced power by 28-56%, with only 16% of the power (72 mW/m2) generated using an AEM cathode lacking a catalyst. Using a current collector (a stainless steel mesh) pressed against the inside surface of the AEM cathode and 200 mM PBS, the maximum power produced was further increased to 728 mW/m2 (21.2 W/m3). The use of AEM cathodes and brush anodes provides comparable performance to similar systems that use materials costing nearly an order of magnitude more (carbon paper electrodes) and thus represent more useful materials for reducing the costs of MFCs for wastewater treatment applications. PMID:18853817

  4. Ion exchange membrane cathodes for scalable microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zuo, Yi; Cheng, Shaoan; Logan, Bruce E

    2008-09-15

    One of the main challenges for using microbial fuel cells (MFCs) is developing materials and architectures that are economical and generate high power densities. The performance of two cathodes constructed from two low-cost anion (AEM) and cation (CEM) exchange membranes was compared to that achieved using an ultrafiltration (UF) cathode, when the membranes were made electrically conductive using graphite paint and a nonprecious metal catalyst (CoTMPP). The best performance in single-chamber MFCs using graphite fiber brush anodes was achieved using an AEM cathode with the conductive coating facing the solution, at a catalyst loading of 0.5 mg/cm2 CoTMPP. The maximum power densitywas 449 mW/ m2 (normalized to the projected cathode surface area) or 13.1 W/m3 (total reactor volume), with a Coulombic efficiency up to 70% in a 50 mM phosphate buffer solution (PBS) using acetate. Decreasing the CoTMPP loading by 40-80% reduced power by 28-56%, with only 16% of the power (72 mW/m2) generated using an AEM cathode lacking a catalyst. Using a current collector (a stainless steel mesh) pressed against the inside surface of the AEM cathode and 200 mM PBS, the maximum power produced was further increased to 728 mW/m2 (21.2 W/m3). The use of AEM cathodes and brush anodes provides comparable performance to similar systems that use materials costing nearly an order of magnitude more (carbon paper electrodes) and thus represent more useful materials for reducing the costs of MFCs for wastewater treatment applications.

  5. New Cathode Materials for Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Allan J. Jacobson

    2006-06-30

    Operation of SOFCs at intermediate temperatures (500-800 C) requires new combinations of electrolyte and electrode materials that will provide both rapid ion transport across the electrolyte and electrode-electrolyte interfaces and efficient electrocatalysis of the oxygen reduction and fuel oxidation reactions. This project concentrates on materials and issues associated with cathode performance that are known to become limiting factors as the operating temperature is reduced. The specific objectives of the proposed research are to develop cathode materials that meet the electrode performance targets of 1.0 W/cm{sup 2} at 0.7 V in combination with YSZ at 700 C and with GDC, LSGM or bismuth oxide based electrolytes at 600 C. The performance targets imply an area specific resistance of {approx}0.5 {Omega}cm{sup 2} for the total cell. The research strategy is to investigate both established classes of materials and new candidates as cathodes, to determine fundamental performance parameters such as bulk diffusion, surface reactivity and interfacial transfer, and to couple these parameters to performance in single cell tests. In this report, further measurements of the oxygen deficient double perovskite PrBaCo{sub 2}O{sub 5.5+{delta}} are reported. The high electronic conductivity and rapid diffusion and surface exchange kinetics of PBCO suggest its application as cathode material in intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells. Preliminary measurements in symmetric cells have shown low ASR values at 600 C. Here we describe the first complete cell measurements on Ni/CGO/CGO/PBCO/CGO cells.

  6. Lithium-ferrate-based cathodes for molten carbonate fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Lanagan, M.T.; Bloom, I.; Kaun, T.D.

    1996-12-31

    Argonne National Laboratory is developing advanced cathodes for pressurized operation of the molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC) at {approximately}650{degrees}C. To be economically viable for stationary power generation, molten carbonate fuel cells must have lifetimes of more than 25,000 h while exhibiting superior cell performance. In the present technology, lithiated NiO is used as the cathode. Over the lifetime of the cell, however, N{sup 2+} ions tend to transport to the anode, where they are reduced to metallic Ni. With increased CO{sub 2} partial pressure, the transport of Ni increases because of the increased solubility of NiO in the carbonate electrolyte. Although this process is slow in MCFCs operated at 1 atm and a low CO{sub 2} partial pressure (about 0.1 atm), transport of nickel to the anode may be excessive at a higher pressure (e.g., 3 atm) and a high CO{sub 2} partial pressure (e.g., about 0.3 arm). This transport is expected to lead eventually to poor MCFC performance and/or short circuiting. Several alternative cathode compositions have been explored to reduce cathode solubility in the molten salt electrolyte. For example, LiCoO{sub 2} has been studied extensively as a potential cathode material. The LiCoO{sub 2} cathode has a low resistivity, about 10-cm, and can be used as a direct substitute for NiO. Argonne is developing advanced cathodes based on lithium ferrate (LiFeO{sub 2}), which is attractive because of its very low solubility in the molten (Li,K){sub 2}CO{sub 3} electrolyte. Because of its high resistivity (about 3000-cm), however, LiFeO{sub 2} cannot be used as a direct substitute for NiO. Cation substitution is, therefore, necessary to decrease resistivity. We determined the effect of cation substitution on the resistivity and deformation of LiFeO{sub 2}. The substituents were chosen because their respective oxides as well as LiFeO{sub 2} crystallize with the rock-salt structure.

  7. Functionally Graded Cathodes for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Harry Abernathy; Meilin Liu

    2006-12-31

    One primary suspected cause of long-term performance degradation of solid oxide fuels (SOFCs) is the accumulation of chromium (Cr) species at or near the cathode/electrolyte interface due to reactive Cr molecules originating from Cr-containing components (such as the interconnect) in fuel cell stacks. To date, considerable efforts have been devoted to the characterization of cathodes exposed to Cr sources; however, little progress has been made because a detailed understanding of the chemistry and electrochemistry relevant to the Cr-poisoning processes is still lacking. This project applied multiple characterization methods - including various Raman spectroscopic techniques and various electrochemical performance measurement techniques - to elucidate and quantify the effect of Cr-related electrochemical degradation at the cathode/electrolyte interface. Using Raman microspectroscopy the identity and location of Cr contaminants (SrCrO{sub 4}, (Mn/Cr){sub 3}O{sub 4} spinel) have been observed in situ on an LSM cathode. These Cr contaminants were shown to form chemically (in the absence of current flowing through the cell) at temperatures as low as 625 C. While SrCrO{sub 4} and (Mn/Cr){sub 3}O{sub 4} spinel must preferentially form on LSM, since the LSM supplies the Sr and Mn cations necessary for these compounds, LSM was also shown to be an active site for the deposition of Ag{sub 2}CrO{sub 4} for samples that also contained silver. In contrast, Pt and YSZ do not appear to be active for formation of Cr-containing phases. The work presented here supports the theory that Cr contamination is predominantly chemically-driven and that in order to minimize the effect, cathode materials should be chosen that are free of cations/elements that could preferentially react with chromium, including silver, strontium, and manganese.

  8. New Cathode Materials for Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Allan J. Jacobson

    2005-11-17

    Operation of SOFCs at intermediate temperatures (500-800 C) requires new combinations of electrolyte and electrode materials that will provide both rapid ion transport across the electrolyte and electrode--electrolyte interfaces and efficient electrocatalysis of the oxygen reduction and fuel oxidation reactions. This project concentrates on materials and issues associated with cathode performance that are known to become limiting factors as the operating temperature is reduced. The specific objectives of the proposed research are to develop cathode materials that meet the electrode performance targets of 1.0 W/cm{sup 2} at 0.7 V in combination with YSZ at 700 C and with GDC, LSGM or bismuth oxide based electrolytes at 600 C. The performance targets imply an area specific resistance of {approx}0.5 {Omega}cm{sup 2} for the total cell. The research strategy is to investigate both established classes of materials and new candidates as cathodes, to determine fundamental performance parameters such as bulk diffusion, surface reactivity and interfacial transfer, and to couple these parameters to performance in single cell tests. In this report, the oxygen exchange kinetics of a P2 composition are described in detail. The oxygen exchange kinetics of the oxygen deficient double perovskite LnBaCo{sub 2}O{sub 5.5+{delta}} (Ln=Pr and Nd) have been determined by electrical conductivity relaxation. The high electronic conductivity and rapid diffusion and surface exchange kinetics of PBCO suggest its application as cathode material in intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

  9. Lithium-ferrate-based cathodes for molten carbonate fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Lanagan, M.T.; Wolfenstine, J.; Bloom, I.; Kaun, T.D.; Krumpelt, M.

    1996-12-31

    Argonne National Laboratory is developing advanced cathodes for pressurized operation of the molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC) at approximately 650 degrees Centigrade. These cathodes are based on lithium ferrate (LiFeO[sub 2]) which is attractive because of its very low solubility in the molten (Li,K)[sub 2]CO[sub 3] electrolyte. Because of its high resistivity, LiFeO[sub 2] cannot be used as a direct substitute for NiO. Cation substitution is, therefore, necessary to decrease resistivity. The effect of cation substitution on the resistivity and deformation of LiFeO[sub 2] was determined. The substitutes were chosen because their respective oxides as well as LiFeO[sub 2] crystallize with the rock-salt structure.

  10. Development of improved cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, H.U.

    1991-03-01

    The University of Missouri-Rolla conducted a 17 month research program focused on the development and evaluation of improved cathode materials for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC). The objectives of this program were: (1) the development of cathode materials of improved stability in reducing environments; and (2) the development of cathode materials with improved electrical conductivity. The program was successful in identifying some potential candidate materials: Air sinterable (La,Ca)(Cr,Co)O{sub 3} compositions were developed and found to be more stable than La{sub .8}Sr{sub .2}MnO{sub 3} towards reduction. Their conductivity at 1000{degrees}C ranged between 30 to 60 S/cm. Compositions within the (Y,Ca)(Cr,Co,Mn)O{sub 3} system were developed and found to have higher electrical conductivity than La{sub .8}Sr{sub .2}MnO{sub 3} and preliminary results suggest that their stability towards reduction is superior.

  11. Tandem cathode for proton exchange membrane fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Siahrostami, Samira; Björketun, Mårten E; Strasser, Peter; Greeley, Jeff; Rossmeisl, Jan

    2013-06-21

    The efficiency of proton exchange membrane fuel cells is limited mainly by the oxygen reduction reaction at the cathode. The large cathodic overpotential is caused by correlations between binding energies of reaction intermediates in the reduction of oxygen to water. This work introduces a novel tandem cathode design where the full oxygen reduction, involving four electron-transfer steps, is divided into formation (equilibrium potential 0.70 V) followed by reduction (equilibrium potential 1.76 V) of hydrogen peroxide. The two part reactions contain only two electron-transfer steps and one reaction intermediate each, and they occur on different catalyst surfaces. As a result they can be optimized independently and the fundamental problem associated with the four-electron catalysis is avoided. A combination of density functional theory calculations and published experimental data is used to identify potentially active and selective materials for both catalysts. Co-porphyrin is recommended for the first step, formation of hydrogen peroxide, and three different metal oxides - SrTiO3(100), CaTiO3(100) and WO3(100) - are suggested for the subsequent reduction step. PMID:23661187

  12. New Cathode Materials for Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Allan J. Jacobson

    2004-07-23

    Operation of SOFCs at intermediate temperatures (500-800 C) requires new combinations of electrolyte and electrode materials that will provide both rapid ion transport across the electrolyte and electrode - electrolyte interfaces and efficient electrocatalysis of the oxygen reduction and fuel oxidation reactions. This project concentrates on materials and issues associated with cathode performance that are known to become limiting factors as the operating temperature is reduced. The specific objectives of the proposed research are to develop cathode materials that meet the electrode performance targets of 1.0 W/cm{sup 2} at 0.7 V in combination with YSZ at 700 C and with GDC, LSGM or bismuth oxide based electrolytes at 600 C. The performance targets imply an area specific resistance of {approx}0.5 {Omega}cm{sup 2} for the total cell. The research strategy is to investigate both established classes of materials and new candidates as cathodes, to determine fundamental performance parameters such as bulk diffusion, surface reactivity and interfacial transfer, and to couple these parameters to performance in single cell tests. The initial choices for study are perovskite oxides based on Sr substituted LaFeO{sub 3}, where significant data in single cell tests exists at PNNL for cathodes on both YSZ and CSO/YSZ, and Ln{sub 2}NiO{sub 4} compositions. A key component of the research strategy is to evaluate for each cathode material composition, the key performance parameters, including ionic and electronic conductivity, surface exchange rates, stability with respect to the specific electrolyte choice, and thermal expansion coefficients. Results on electrical conductivity relaxation measurements on additional compositions in the La{sub 2}NiO{sub 4+x} and Pr{sub 2}NiO{sub 4+x} series are presented in this report. Studies of the inter-diffusion of amorphous SrFeO{sub 3-x} and LaFeO{sub 3-x} bilayer films prepared by pulsed laser deposition are described. Such studies are a

  13. Methanol-tolerant cathode catalyst composite for direct methanol fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Zhu, Yimin; Zelenay, Piotr

    2006-09-05

    A direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) having a methanol fuel supply, oxidant supply, and its membrane electrode assembly (MEA) formed of an anode electrode and a cathode electrode with a membrane therebetween, a methanol oxidation catalyst adjacent the anode electrode and the membrane, an oxidant reduction catalyst adjacent the cathode electrode and the membrane, comprises an oxidant reduction catalyst layer of Pt.sub.3Cr/C so that oxidation at the cathode of methanol that crosses from the anode through the membrane to the cathode is reduced with a concomitant increase of net electrical potential at the cathode electrode.

  14. Methanol-Tolerant Cathode Catalyst Composite For Direct Methanol Fuel Cells

    DOEpatents

    Zhu, Yimin; Zelenay, Piotr

    2006-03-21

    A direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) having a methanol fuel supply, oxidant supply, and its membrane electrode assembly (MEA) formed of an anode electrode and a cathode electrode with a membrane therebetween, a methanol oxidation catalyst adjacent the anode electrode and the membrane, an oxidant reduction catalyst adjacent the cathode electrode and the membrane, comprises an oxidant reduction catalyst layer of a platinum-chromium alloy so that oxidation at the cathode of methanol that crosses from the anode through the membrane to the cathode is reduced with a concomitant increase of net electrical potential at the cathode electrode.

  15. Simulated coal-gas-fueled molten carbonate fuel cell development program. Topical report: Cathode compatibility tests

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, W.H.

    1992-07-01

    In previous work, International Fuel Cells Corporation (EFC) found interactions between molten carbonate fuel cell cathode materials being considered as replacements for the presently used nickel oxide and matrix materials. Consequently, this work was conducted to screen additional new materials for mutual compatibility. As part of this program, experiments were performed to examine the compatibility of several candidate, alternative cathode materials with the standard lithium aluminate matrix material in the presence of electrolyte at cell potentials. Initial cathode candidates were materials lithium ferrite, yttrium iron garnet, lithium manganite and doped ceria which were developed by universities, national laboratories, or contractors to DOE, EPRI, or GRI. These investigations were conducted in laboratory scale experiments. None of the materials tested can directly replace nickel oxide or indicate greater stability of cell performance than afforded by nickel oxide. Specifically: (1) no further work on niobium doped ceria is warranted; (2) cobalt migration was found in the lithium ferrite cathode tested. This could possibly lead to shorting problems similiar to those encountered with nickel oxide; (3) Possible shorting problems may also exist with the proprietary dopant in YIG; (4) lithium ferrite and YIG cathode were not single phase materials. Assessment of the chemical stability, i.e., dopant loss, was severely impeded by dissolution of these second phases in the electrolyte; and (5) Magnesium doped lithium manganite warrants further work. Electrolytes should contain Mg ions to suppress dopant loss.

  16. Corrosion testing of candidates for the alkaline fuel cell cathode

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singer, Joseph; Fielder, William L.

    1989-01-01

    Current/voltage data was obtained for specially made corrosion electrodes of some oxides and of gold materials for the purpose of developing a screening test of catalysts and supports for use at the cathode of the alkaline fuel cell. The data consists of measurements of current at fixed potentials and cyclic voltammograms. These data will have to be correlated with longtime performance data in order to fully evaluate this approach to corrosion screening. Corrosion test screening of candidates for the oxygen reduction electrode of the alkaline fuel cell was applied to two substances, the pyrochlore Pb2Ru2O6.5 and the spinel NiCo2O4. The substrate gold screen and a sample of the IFC Orbiter Pt-Au performance electrode were included as blanks. The pyrochlore data indicate relative stability, although nothing yet can be said about long term stability. The spinel was plainly unstable. For this type of testing to be validated, comparisons will have to be made with long term performance tests.

  17. New Cathode Materials for Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Allan J. Jacobson

    2006-09-30

    Operation of SOFCs at intermediate temperatures (500-800 C) requires new combinations of electrolyte and electrode materials that will provide both rapid ion transport across the electrolyte and electrode-electrolyte interfaces and efficient electrocatalysis of the oxygen reduction and fuel oxidation reactions. This project concentrates on materials and issues associated with cathode performance that are known to become limiting factors as the operating temperature is reduced. The specific objectives of the proposed research are to develop cathode materials that meet the electrode performance targets of 1.0 W/cm{sup 2} at 0.7 V in combination with YSZ at 700 C and with GDC, LSGM or bismuth oxide based electrolytes at 600 C. The performance targets imply an area specific resistance of {approx}0.5 {Omega}cm{sup 2} for the total cell. The research strategy is to investigate both established classes of materials and new candidates as cathodes, to determine fundamental performance parameters such as bulk diffusion, surface reactivity and interfacial transfer, and to couple these parameters to performance in single cell tests. The initial choices for study were perovskite oxides based on substituted LaFeO{sub 3} (P1 compositions), where significant data in single cell tests exist at PNNL for example, for La{sub 0.8}Sr{sub 0.2}FeO{sub 3} cathodes on both YSZ and CSO/YSZ. The materials selection was then extended to La{sub 2}NiO{sub 4} compositions (K1 compositions), and then in a longer range task we evaluated the possibility of completely unexplored group of materials that are also perovskite related, the ABM{sub 2}O{sub 5+{delta}}. A key component of the research strategy was to evaluate for each cathode material composition, the key performance parameters, including ionic and electronic conductivity, surface exchange rates, stability with respect to the specific electrolyte choice, and thermal expansion coefficients. In the initial phase, we did this in parallel with

  18. Evaluation of microbial fuel cell operation using algae as an oxygen supplier: carbon paper cathode vs. carbon brush cathode.

    PubMed

    Kakarla, Ramesh; Min, Booki

    2014-12-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) and its cathode performances were compared with use of carbon fiber brush and plain carbon paper cathode electrodes in algae aeration. The MFC having carbon fiber brush cathode exhibited a voltage of 0.21 ± 0.01 V (1,000 Ω) with a cathode potential of around -0.14 ± 0.01 V in algal aeration, whereas MFC with plain carbon paper cathode resulted in a voltage of 0.06 ± 0.005 V with a cathode potential of -0.39 ± 0.01 V. During polarizations, MFC equipped with carbon fiber brush cathode showed a maximum power density of 30 mW/m(2), whereas the MFC equipped with plain carbon paper showed a power density of 4.6 mW/m(2). In algae aeration, the internal resistance with carbon fiber brush cathode was 804 Ω and with plain carbon paper it was 1,210 Ω. The peak currents of MFC operation with carbon fiber brush and plain carbon paper cathodes were -31 mA and -850 µA, respectively. PMID:24890136

  19. Evaluation of microbial fuel cell operation using algae as an oxygen supplier: carbon paper cathode vs. carbon brush cathode.

    PubMed

    Kakarla, Ramesh; Min, Booki

    2014-12-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) and its cathode performances were compared with use of carbon fiber brush and plain carbon paper cathode electrodes in algae aeration. The MFC having carbon fiber brush cathode exhibited a voltage of 0.21 ± 0.01 V (1,000 Ω) with a cathode potential of around -0.14 ± 0.01 V in algal aeration, whereas MFC with plain carbon paper cathode resulted in a voltage of 0.06 ± 0.005 V with a cathode potential of -0.39 ± 0.01 V. During polarizations, MFC equipped with carbon fiber brush cathode showed a maximum power density of 30 mW/m(2), whereas the MFC equipped with plain carbon paper showed a power density of 4.6 mW/m(2). In algae aeration, the internal resistance with carbon fiber brush cathode was 804 Ω and with plain carbon paper it was 1,210 Ω. The peak currents of MFC operation with carbon fiber brush and plain carbon paper cathodes were -31 mA and -850 µA, respectively.

  20. Corrosion testing of candidates for the alkaline fuel cell cathode

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singer, Joseph; Fielder, William L.

    1989-01-01

    It is desirable to employ a corrosion screening test for catalyst or support candidates for the fuel cell cathode before entering upon optimization of the candidate or of the catalytic electrode. To this end, corrosion test electrodes, intended for complete immersion and maximum wetting, have been made with 30 to 40 vol. pct Teflon; with perovskites this is about 10 to 15 pct. The candidates were synthesized by methods intended for single-phase product without special emphasis on high surface area, although the substances tested were no coarser than 2 m squared/g. A typical loading was 25 mg/cm sq of the pure substance, usually on gold screen, a few mm squared of which were left bare for contacting. Contact to the gold lead wire was made by welding with a micro-torch or a spot-welder. Corrosion testing consisted of obtaining current-voltage data under flowing inert gas in the potential region for reduction of O2. The electrode was immersed in 30 pct KOH. Observations were made at 20 C and 80 C, and the results compared with data from gold standards. Results with some perovskites, pyrochlores, spinels, and interstitial compounds will be discussed.

  1. Iron-based perovskite cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Ralph, James M.; Rossignol, Cecile C.R.; Vaughey, John T.

    2007-01-02

    An A and/or A' site deficient perovskite of general formula of (A.sub.1-xA'.sub.x).sub.1-yFeO.sub.3-.delta. or of general formula A.sub.1-x-yA'.sub.xFeO.sub.3-67, wherein A is La alone or with one or more of the rare earth metals or a rare earth metal other than Ce alone or a combination of rare earth metals and X is in the range of from 0 to about 1; A' is Sr or Ca or mixtures thereof and Y is in the range of from about 0.01 to about 0.3; .delta. represents the amount of compensating oxygen loss. If either A or A' is zero the remaining A or A' is deficient. A fuel cell incorporating the inventive perovskite as a cathode is disclosed as well as an oxygen separation membrane. The inventive perovskite is preferably single phase.

  2. Electricity generation by microbial fuel cell using microorganisms as catalyst in cathode.

    PubMed

    Jang, Jae Kyung; Kan, Jinjun; Bretschger, Orianna; Gorby, Yuri A; Hsu, Lewis; Kim, Byung Hong; Nealson, Kenneth H

    2013-12-01

    The cathode reaction is one of the most seriously limiting factors in a microbial fuel cell (MFC). The critical dissolved oxygen (DO) concentration of a platinum-loaded graphite electrode was reported as 2.2 mg/l, about 10-fold higher than an aerobic bacterium. A series of MFCs were run with the cathode compartment inoculated with activated sludge (biotic) or not (abiotic) on platinum-loaded or bare graphite electrodes. At the beginning of the operation, the current values from MFCs with a biocathode and abiotic cathode were 2.3 ± 0.1 and 2.6 ± 0.2 mA, respectively, at the air-saturated water supply in the cathode. The current from MFCs with an abiotic cathode did not change, but that of MFCs with a biotic cathode increased to 3.0 mA after 8 weeks. The coulomb efficiency was 59.6% in the MFCs with a biotic cathode, much higher than the value of 15.6% of the abiotic cathode. When the DO supply was reduced, the current from MFCs with an abiotic cathode decreased more sharply than in those with a biotic cathode. When the respiratory inhibitor azide was added to the catholyte, the current decreased in MFCs with a biotic cathode but did not change in MFCs with an abiotic cathode. The power density was higher in MFCs with a biotic cathode (430 W/m(3) cathode compartment) than the abiotic cathode MFC (257 W/m(3) cathode compartment). Electron microscopic observation revealed nanowire structures in biofilms that developed on both the anode and on the biocathode. These results show that an electron consuming bacterial consortium can be used as a cathode catalyst to improve the cathode reaction. PMID:24225369

  3. Oxygen-hydrogen fuel cell with an iodine-iodide cathode - A concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Javet, P.

    1970-01-01

    Fuel cell uses a porous cathode through which is fed a solution of iodine in aqueous iodide solution, the anode is a hydrogen electrode. No activation polarization appears on the cathode because of the high exchange-current density of the iodine-iodide electrode.

  4. Functionally Graded Cathodes for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Lei Yang; Ze Liu; Shizhone Wang; Jaewung Lee; Meilin Liu

    2008-04-30

    The main objective of this DOE project is to demonstrate that the performance and long-term stability of the state-of-the-art LSCF cathode can be enhanced by a catalytically active coating (e.g., LSM or SSC). We have successfully developed a methodology for reliably evaluating the intrinsic surface catalytic properties of cathode materials. One of the key components of the test cell is a dense LSCF film, which will function as the current collector for the electrode material under evaluation to eliminate the effect of ionic and electronic transport. Since it is dense, the effect of geometry would be eliminated as well. From the dependence of the electrode polarization resistance on the thickness of a dense LSCF electrode and on partial pressure of oxygen, we have confirmed that the surface catalytic activity of LSCF limits the performances of LSCF-based cathodes. Further, we have demonstrated, using test cells of different configurations, that the performance of LSCF-based electrodes can be significantly enhanced by infiltration of a thin film of LSM or SSC. In addition, the stability of LSCF-based cathodes was also improved by infiltration of LSM or SSC. While the concept feasibility of the electrode architecture is demonstrated, many details are yet to be determined. For example, it is not clear how the surface morphology, composition, and thickness of the coatings change under operating conditions over time, how these changes influence the electrochemical behavior of the cathodes, and how to control the microscopic details of the coatings in order to optimize the performance. The selection of the catalytic materials as well as the detailed microstructures of the porous LSCF and the catalyst layer may critically impact the performance of the proposed cathodes. Further, other fundamental questions still remain; it is not clear why the degradation rates of LSCF cathodes are relatively high, why a LSM coating improves the stability of LSCF cathodes, which catalysts

  5. Development of LSM-based cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells based on YSZ films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Kongfa; Lü, Zhe; Chen, Xiangjun; Ai, Na; Huang, Xiqiang; Du, Xiaobo; Su, Wenhui

    In an attempt to achieve desirable cell performance, the effects of La 0.7Sr 0.3MnO 3 (LSM)-based cathodes on the anode-supported solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) were investigated in the present study. Three types of cathodes were fabricated on the anode-supported yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) thin films to constitute several single cells, i.e., pure LSM cathode, LSM/YSZ composite by solid mixing, LSM/Sm 0.2Ce 0.8O 1.9 (SDC) composite by the ion-impregnation process. Among the three single cells, the highest cell output performance 1.25 W cm -2 at 800 °C, was achieved by the cell using LSM/SDC cathode when the cathode was exposed to the stationary air. Whereas, the most considerable cell performance of 2.32 W cm -2 was derived from the cell with LSM/YSZ cathode, using 100 ml min -1 oxygen flow as the oxidant. At reduced temperatures down to 700 °C, the LSM/SDC cathode was the most suitable cathode for zirconia-based electrolyte SOFC in the present study. The variation in the cell performances was attributed to the mutual effects between the gas diffusing rate and three-phase boundary length of the cathode.

  6. Photoregenerative I⁻/I₃⁻ couple as a liquid cathode for proton exchange membrane fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhen; Wang, Yadong; Ai, Xinping; Tu, Wenmao; Pan, Mu

    2014-10-28

    A photoassisted oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) through I(-)/I3(-) redox couple was investigated for proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell cathode reaction. The I(-)/I3(-)-based liquid cathode was used to replace conventional oxygen cathode, and its discharge product I(-) was regenerated to I3(-) by photocatalytic oxidation with the participation of oxygen. This new and innovative approach may provide a strategy to eliminate the usage of challenging ORR electrocatalysts, resulting in an avenue for developing low-cost and high-efficiency PEM fuel cells.

  7. On the actual cathode mixed potential in direct methanol fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zago, M.; Bisello, A.; Baricci, A.; Rabissi, C.; Brightman, E.; Hinds, G.; Casalegno, A.

    2016-09-01

    Methanol crossover is one of the most critical issues hindering commercialization of direct methanol fuel cells since it leads to waste of fuel and significantly affects cathode potential, forming a so-called mixed potential. Unfortunately, due to the sluggish anode kinetics, it is not possible to obtain a reliable estimation of cathode potential by simply measuring the cell voltage. In this work we address this limitation, quantifying the mixed potential by means of innovative open circuit voltage (OCV) tests with a methanol-hydrogen mixture fed to the anode. Over a wide range of operating conditions, the resulting cathode overpotential is between 250 and 430 mV and is strongly influenced by methanol crossover. We show using combined experimental and modelling analysis of cathode impedance that the methanol oxidation at the cathode mainly follows an electrochemical pathway. Finally, reference electrode measurements at both cathode inlet and outlet provide a local measurement of cathode potential, confirming the reliability of the innovative OCV tests and permitting the evaluation of cathode potential up to typical operating current. At 0.25 A cm-2 the operating cathode potential is around 0.85 V and the Ohmic drop through the catalyst layer is almost 50 mV, which is comparable to that in the membrane.

  8. Proton exchange membrane fuel cell cathode contamination - Acetylene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhai, Y.; St-Pierre, Jean

    2015-04-01

    Acetylene adsorption on PEMFC electrodes and contamination in single cells are investigated with 300 ppm acetylene at a cathode held at 80 °C. The results of adsorption experiments suggest that acetylene adsorbs readily on electrodes and is reduced to ethylene and ethane under an open circuit potential of H2/N2, as the adsorbates can be electro-oxidized at high potentials. The cell voltage response shows that 300 ppm acetylene results in a cell performance loss of approximately 88%. The voltage degradation curve is divided into two stages by an inflection point, which suggests that potential-dependent processes are involved in acetylene poisoning. These potential-dependent processes may include acetylene oxidation and reduction as well as accumulation of intermediates on the electrode surface. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy analysis suggests that acetylene affects the oxygen reduction reaction and may also affect mass transport processes. Acetylene also may be reduced in the steady poisoning state of the operating cell. After neat air operation, the cyclic voltammetry results imply that the cathode catalyst surface is almost completely restored, with no contaminant residues remaining in the MEA. Linear scanning voltammetry measurements show no change in hydrogen crossover caused by contamination, and polarization curves confirm complete recovery of cell performance.

  9. Temporal variations of cathode performance in air-cathode single-chamber microbial fuel cells with different separators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Jinxing; Wang, Zhiwei; Suor, Denis; Liu, Shumeng; Li, Jiaqi; Wu, Zhichao

    2014-12-01

    An ideal separator is essential for efficient power production from air-cathode single-chamber microbial fuel cells (MFCs). In this study, we use different kinds of membranes as separators, including Nafion 117 proton exchange membrane, polyethersulfone and poly(vinylidene fluoride) microfiltration membranes. Temporal variations of cathode performance are monitored during the experiment. Results show that MFCs with microfiltration membranes present higher power output but deterioration is still observed after about 600-h operation. With the utilization of appropriate separators (e.g., polyethersulfone membrane), biofouling, cation fouling and chemical scale fouling of the cathodes are alleviated while reaction fouling seems inevitable. Moreover, it is found that Coulombic efficiency (CE) and energy efficiency (EE) are also related to the cathode performance. Despite relatively high oxygen diffusivity (1.49 × 10-5 cm2 s-1), CE and EE of the MFC with 0.1 μm pore-size polyethersulfone membrane can reach 92.8% and 13.7%, respectively, when its average power density registers 403.5 mW m-2. This phenomenon might be attributed to the finding that the overall substrate consumption rate due to oxygen reduction and respiration is almost constant in the air-cathode MFCs. Oxygen leakage into the electrolyte can be inhibited due to the efficient oxygen reduction reaction on the surface of the cathode.

  10. Development of gold alloy catalyst cathode for alkaline electrolyte fuel cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Freed, M. S.; Lawrance, R. J.

    1975-01-01

    A program for the development of improved catalyst and Teflon-bonded electrode structures using this improved catalyst is described, for use in fuel cell cathodes. It was found that Au-Pt was superior to the traditional platinum black as a catalyst. The impetus to the program was provided by the discovery that a life-limiting mechanism on the old catalyst was the gradual dissolution of platinum from the cathode and subsequent redeposition in the electrolyte-containing matrix.

  11. Multi-variable mathematical models for the air-cathode microbial fuel cell system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ou, Shiqi; Kashima, Hiroyuki; Aaron, Douglas S.; Regan, John M.; Mench, Matthew M.

    2016-05-01

    This research adopted the version control system into the model construction for the single chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) system, to understand the interrelation of biological, chemical, and electrochemical reactions. The anodic steady state model was used to consider the chemical species diffusion and electric migration influence to the MFC performance. In the cathodic steady state model, the mass transport and reactions in a multi-layer, abiotic cathode and multi-bacteria cathode biofilm were simulated. Transport of hydroxide was assumed for cathodic pH change. This assumption is an alternative to the typical notion of proton consumption during oxygen reduction to explain elevated cathode pH. The cathodic steady state model provided the power density and polarization curve performance results that can be compared to an experimental MFC system. Another aspect considered was the relative contributions of platinum catalyst and microbes on the cathode to the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). Simulation results showed that the biocatalyst in a cathode that includes a Pt/C catalyst likely plays a minor role in ORR, contributing up to 8% of the total power calculated by the models.

  12. Multi-variable mathematical models for the air-cathode microbial fuel cell system

    DOE PAGES

    Ou, Shiqi; Kashima, Hiroyuki; Aaron, Douglas S.; Regan, John M.; Mench, Matthew M.

    2016-03-10

    This research adopted the version control system into the model construction for the single chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) system, to understand the interrelation of biological, chemical, and electrochemical reactions. The anodic steady state model was used to consider the chemical species diffusion and electric migration influence to the MFC performance. In the cathodic steady state model, the mass transport and reactions in a multi-layer, abiotic cathode and multi-bacteria cathode biofilm were simulated. Transport of hydroxide was assumed for cathodic pH change. This assumption is an alternative to the typical notion of proton consumption during oxygen reduction to explainmore » elevated cathode pH. The cathodic steady state model provided the power density and polarization curve performance results that can be compared to an experimental MFC system. Another aspect we considered was the relative contributions of platinum catalyst and microbes on the cathode to the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). We found simulation results showed that the biocatalyst in a cathode that includes a Pt/C catalyst likely plays a minor role in ORR, contributing up to 8% of the total power calculated by the models.« less

  13. An intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cell with electrospun nanofiber cathode

    SciTech Connect

    Zhi, Mingjia; Lee, Shiwoo; Miller, Nicholas; Menzler, Norbert H.; Wu, Nianqiang

    2012-05-01

    Lanthanum strontium cobalt ferrite (LSCF) nanofibers have been fabricated by the electrospinning method and used as the cathode of an intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) with yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) electrolyte. The three-dimensional nanofiber network cathode has several advantages: (i) high porosity; (ii) high percolation; (iii) continuous pathway for charge transport; (iv) good thermal stability at the operating temperature; and (v) excellent scaffold for infiltration. The fuel cell with the monolithic LSCF nanofiber cathode exhibits a power density of 0.90 W cm{sup −2} at 1.9 A cm{sup −2} at 750 °C. The electrochemical performance of the fuel cell has been further improved by infiltration of 20 wt% of gadolinia-doped ceria (GDC) into the LSCF nanofiber cathode. The fuel cell with the LSCF–20% GDC composite cathode shows a power density of 1.07 W cm{sup −2} at 1.9 A cm{sup −2} at 750 °C. The results obtained show that one-dimensional nanostructures such as nanofibers hold great promise as electrode materials for intermediate-temperature SOFCs.

  14. Proton conducting intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells using new perovskite type cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Meiling; Ni, Meng; Su, Feng; Xia, Changrong

    2014-08-01

    Sr2Fe1.5Mo0.5O6-δ (SFM) is proposed as the electrodes for symmetric solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) based on oxygen-ion conducting electrolytes. In this work SFM is investigated as the cathodes for SOFCs with proton conducting BaZr0.1Ce0.7Y0.2O3-δ (BZCY) electrolyte. SFM is synthesized with a combined glycine and citric acid method and shows very good chemical compatibility with BZCY under 1100 °C. Anode-supported single cell (Ni-BZCY anode, BZCY electrolyte, and SFM-BZCY cathode) and symmetrical fuel cell (SFM-BZCY electrodes and BZCY electrolyte) are fabricated and their performances are measured. Impedance spectroscopy on symmetrical cell consisting of BZCY electrolyte and SFM-BZCY electrodes demonstrates low area-specific interfacial polarization resistance Rp, and the lowest Rp, 0.088 Ω cm2 is achieved at 800 °C when cathode is sintered at 900 °C for 2 h. The single fuel cell achieves 396 mW cm-2 at 800 °C in wet H2 (3 vol% H2O) at a co-sintering temperature of 1000 °C. This study demonstrates the potential of SFM-BZCY as a cathode material in proton-conducting intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

  15. Anode and cathode materials characterization for a microbial fuel cell in half cell configuration.

    PubMed

    Pant, Deepak; Van Bogaert, Gilbert; Porto-Carrero, Christof; Diels, Ludo; Vanbroekhoven, Karolien

    2011-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are novel bioelectrochemical devices for spontaneous conversion of biomass into electricity through the metabolic activity of the bacteria. Microbial production of electricity may become an important source of bioenergy in future because MFCs offer the possibility of extracting electric current from a wide range of soluble or dissolved complex organic wastes and renewable biomass. However, the materials used in these devices are still not economic and researchers use different materials as cathode and anode in MFCs. This results in variable performance which is difficult to compare. We tested several commercially available materials for their suitability as anode in an acetate fed MFC. Besides, a novel non-platinized activated carbon (AC) based, gas porous air cathode was also tested. Both the anode and cathode were tested in a half cell configuration. Carbon cloth, graphite cloth and dynamically stable anode (DSA) served as ideal anode material with carbon cloth and graphite mesh reaching the open circuit voltage (OCV) of acetate oxidation (-500 mV vs. Ag/AgCl). The effect of increasing concentration of acetate on anode OCV was also investigated and results showed that on increasing the acetate concentration from 10 mM to 40 mM has no adverse impact on the anodic activity towards electrochemical oxidation of acetate. The AC cathode showed stable current (-1.2 mA/cm2) over a period of 100 days. PMID:21977673

  16. Novel anti-flooding poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) catalyst binder for microbial fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Fang; Chen, Guang; Hickner, Michael A.; Logan, Bruce E.

    2012-11-01

    Poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) was investigated as an alternative to Nafion as an air cathode catalyst binder in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Cathodes were constructed around either stainless steel (SS) mesh or copper mesh using PDMS as both catalyst binder and diffusion layer, and compared to cathodes of the same structure having a Nafion binder. With PDMS binder, copper mesh cathodes produced a maximum power of 1710 ± 1 mW m-2, while SS mesh had a slightly lower power of 1680 ± 12 mW m-2, with both values comparable to those obtained with Nafion binder. Cathodes with PDMS binder had stable power production of 1510 ± 22 mW m-2 (copper) and 1480 ± 56 mW m-2 (SS) over 15 days at cycle 15, compared to a 40% decrease in power with the Nafion binder. Cathodes with the PDMS binder had lower total cathode impedance than those with Nafion. This is due to a large decrease in diffusion resistance, because hydrophobic PDMS effectively prevented catalyst sites from filling up with water, improving oxygen mass transfer. The cost of PDMS is only 0.23% of that of Nafion. These results showed that PDMS is a very effective and low-cost alternative to Nafion binder that will be useful for large scale construction of these cathodes for MFC applications.

  17. Quantifying the Water Content in the Cathode of Enzyme Fuel Cells via Neutron Imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Aaron, D; Borole, Abhijeet P; Hussey , Daniel; Jacobson, David; Yiacoumi, Sotira; Tsouris, Costas

    2011-01-01

    Neutron imaging was used to study cathode water content over time in a three-dimensional-cathode enzyme fuel cell (EFC). A porous carbon felt cathode allowed air to flow through the electrode. A solution with laccase and a mediator formed an aqueous layer on the electrode surface. Water loss was observed in situ via neutron imaging for varying experimental conditions, including flow rates of hydrogen and air, cathode inlet humidity, volume of enzyme solution, and its composition. Cathode water loss occurred for all experimental conditions, but the loss rate was noticeably reduced when a high-salt-concentration enzyme solution was used in the cathode in conjunction with increased humidity in the air feed stream. Results from neutron imaging and power density analysis were used in analyzing the causes that could contribute to EFC water loss. An increase in temperature due to the exothermic cathode reaction is considered a plausible cause of cathode water loss via evaporation. This is the first reported application of neutron imaging as a technique to study EFC water management. The results suggest that neutron imaging can be employed to provide a better understanding of EFC phenomena and thereby contribute to design and operational improvements of EFCs.

  18. Cathode catalysts for primary phosphoric acid fuel cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1981-01-01

    Alkylation or carbon Vulcan XC-72, the support carbon, was shown to provide the most stable bond type for linking cobalt dehydrodibenzo tetraazannulene (CoTAA) to the surface of the carbon; this result is based on data obtained by cyclic voltammetry, pulse voltammetry and by release of 14C from bonded CoTAA. Half-cell tests at 100 C in 85% phosphoric acid showed that CoTAA bonded to the surface of carbon (Vulcan XC-72) via an alkylation procedure is a more active catalyst than is platinum based on a factor of two improvement in Tafel slope; dimeric CoTAA had catalytic activity equal to platinum. Half-cell tests also showed that bonded CoTAA catalysts do not suffer a loss in potential when air is used as a fuel rather than oxygen. Commercially available polytetrafluroethylene (PTFE) was shown to be unstable in the fuel cell environment with degradation occurring in 2000 hours or less. The PTFE was stressed at 200 C in concentrated phosphoric acid as well as electrochemically stressed in 150 C concentrated phosphoric acid; the surface chemistry of PTFE was observed to change significantly. Radiolabeled PTFE was prepared and used to verify that such chemical changes also occur in the primary fuel cell environment.

  19. Cathode and electrolyte materials for solid oxide fuel cells and ion transport membranes

    DOEpatents

    Jacobson, Allan J; Wang, Shuangyan; Kim, Gun Tae

    2014-01-28

    Novel cathode, electrolyte and oxygen separation materials are disclosed that operate at intermediate temperatures for use in solid oxide fuel cells and ion transport membranes based on oxides with perovskite related structures and an ordered arrangement of A site cations. The materials have significantly faster oxygen kinetics than in corresponding disordered perovskites.

  20. Surface-reconstructed graphite nanofibers as a support for cathode catalysts of fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Gan, Lin; Du, Hongda; Li, Baohua; Kang, Feiyu

    2011-04-01

    Graphite nanofibers (GNFs), on which surface graphite edges were reconstructed into nano-loops, were explored as a cathode catalyst support for fuel cells. The high degree of graphitization, as well as the surface-reconstructed nano-loops that possess topological defects for uniform metal deposition, resulted in an improved performance of the GNF-supported Pt catalyst. PMID:21336405

  1. Copper nitride nanocubes: size-controlled synthesis and application as cathode catalyst in alkaline fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wu, Haibin; Chen, Wei

    2011-10-01

    Copper nitride nanocubes are synthesized in a facile one-phase process. The crystal size could be tuned easily by using different primary amines as capping agents. Such Pt-free nanocrystals exhibit electrocatalytic activity toward oxygen reduction and appear to be promising cathodic electrocatalysts in alkaline fuel cells. PMID:21894995

  2. A review on air cathodes for zinc-air fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neburchilov, Vladimir; Wang, Haijiang; Martin, Jonathan J.; Qu, Wei

    This paper reviews the compositions, design and methods of fabrication of air cathodes for alkali zinc-air fuel cells (ZAFCs), one of the few successfully commercialized fuel cells. The more promising compositions for air cathodes are based on individual oxides, or mixtures of such, with a spinel, perovskite, or pyrochlore structure: MnO 2, Ag, Co 3O 4, La 2O 3, LaNiO 3, NiCo 2O 4, LaMnO 3, LaNiO 3, etc. These compositions provide the optimal balance of ORR activity and chemical stability in an alkali electrolyte. The sol-gel and reverse micelle methods supply the most uniform distribution of the catalyst on carbon and the highest catalyst BET surface area. It is shown that the design of the air cathode, including types of carbon black, binding agents, current collectors, Teflon membranes, thermal treatment of the GDL, and catalyst layers, has a strong effect on performance.

  3. An efficient approach to cathode operational parameters optimization for microbial fuel cell using response surface methodology

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background In the recent study, optimum operational conditions of cathode compartment of microbial fuel cell were determined by using Response Surface Methodology (RSM) with a central composite design to maximize power density and COD removal. Methods The interactive effects of parameters such as, pH, buffer concentration and ionic strength on power density and COD removal were evaluated in two-chamber microbial batch-mode fuel cell. Results Power density and COD removal for optimal conditions (pH of 6.75, buffer concentration of 0.177 M and ionic strength of cathode chamber of 4.69 mM) improve by 17 and 5%, respectively, in comparison with normal conditions (pH of 7, buffer concentration of 0.1 M and ionic strength of 2.5 mM). Conclusions In conclusion, results verify that response surface methodology could successfully determine cathode chamber optimum operational conditions. PMID:24423039

  4. SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELL CATHODES: Polarization Mechanisms and Modeling of the Electrochemical Performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleig, Jurgen

    2003-08-01

    Several recent experimental and numerical investigations have contributed to the improved understanding of the electrochemical mechanisms taking place at solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathodes and yielded valuable information on the relationships between alterable parameters (geometry/material) and the cathodic polarization resistance. Efforts to reduce the polarization resistance in SOFCs can benefit from these results, and some important aspects of the corresponding studies are reviewed. Experimental results, particularly measurements using geometrically well-defined Sr-doped LaMnO3 (LSM) cathodes, are discussed. In regard to simulations, the different levels of sophistication used in SOFC electrode modeling studies are summarized and compared. Exemplary simulations of mixed conducting cathodes that show the capabilities and limits of different modeling levels are described.

  5. PB/PANI-modified electrode used as a novel oxygen reduction cathode in microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Fu, Lei; You, Shi-Jie; Zhang, Guo-Quan; Yang, Feng-Lin; Fang, Xiao-Hong; Gong, Zheng

    2011-01-15

    This study focuses on the preparation of a new type of Prussian Blue/polyaniline (PB/PANI)-modified electrode as oxygen reduction cathode, and its availability in microbial fuel cell (MFC) for biological power generation. The PB/PANI-modified electrode was prepared by electrochemical and chemical methods, both of which exhibited good electrocatalytical reactivity for oxygen reduction in acidic electrolyte. The MFC with PB/PANI-modified cathode aerated by either oxygen or air was shown to yield a maximum power density being the same with that of the MFC with liquid-state ferricyanide cathode, and have an excellent duration as indicated by stable cathode potential for more than eight operating circles. This study suggests a promising potential to utilize this novel electrode as an effective alternative to platinum for oxygen reduction in MFC system without losing sustainability.

  6. Removal of ammonia nitrogen from wastewater using an aerobic cathode microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoyan; Zhu, Feng; Chen, Li; Zhao, Qin; Tao, Guanhong

    2013-10-01

    A new system for removing ammonia nitrogen was developed, which integrated a microbial fuel cell (MFC) with an aerobic bioreactor. A three-chamber reactor consisted of an anode chamber, a middle chamber and a cathode chamber. The chambers were separated by an anion exchange membrane and a cation exchange membrane (CEM), respectively. Driven by the power generated by the MFC, NH4(+) in the middle chamber could migrate through CEM into the cathode chamber. The migrated NH4(+) further removed via biological denitrification in the cathode chamber. Up to 90.2% of total NH4(+)-N could be removed with an initial concentration of 100 mg/L in 98 h. Affecting factors were investigated on the removal efficiency including cathode surface area, electrode spacing, chemical oxygen demand concentration, dissolved oxygen concentration, and NH4(+)-N concentration. The system was characterized by simple configuration and high efficiency, and was successfully applied to the treatment of brewery wastewater.

  7. Cathodic hydrogenation of unsaturated hydrocarbons in a polymer electrolyte fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salazar-Villalpando, Maria Dolores

    2000-10-01

    With the cathodic hydrogenation and isomerization of unsaturated hydrocarbons in a Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell, we wanted to investigate an alternative heterogeneous cathodic process to perform acid catalyzed reactions. In this process, the catalytic activity and selectivity of the catalyst/solid electrolyte interface could be tuned by controlling the proton spillover via an electrical potential. Acidic metal supports, such as zeolites or clays, function through their ability to release and accept protons. Similarly, the use of proton solid electrolyte membranes, such as Nafion allows the electromigration of protons from the fuel cell anode to the corresponding cathode. Of various fuel cell systems considered, the polymer electrolyte fuel cells using Nafion as the solid electrolyte seemed to be the most suitable system because the acidic properties of the Nafion. The products from the hydrogenation and isomerization reactions of 2,3Dimethyl-1-butene (2,3DM1BE) were 2,3Dimethylbutane (2,3DMBA) and 2,3Dimethyl-2-Butene (2,3DM2BE) respectively. The Non-Faradaic Modification of Catalytic activity (NEMCA) or the electrochemical activation of the catalyst/Nafion interface enhanced the catalytic rate of the isomerization reaction. The isomerization of 3,3Dimethyl-1-butene formed 2,3Dimethylbutane as the product from the skeleton rearrangement reaction. These reactions represent examples of the use of fuel cells in the Cogeneration of chemical compounds and electrical power.

  8. Microbial fuel cell cathode with dendrimer encapsulated Pt nanoparticles as catalyst

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Xiaoling; Lu, Jindan; Zhu, Yihua; Shen, Jianhua; Zhang, Zhen; Zhang, Jianmei; Chen, Cheng; Li, Chunzhong

    In this paper, we investigated the use of polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimer-encapsulated platinum nanoparticles (Pt-DENs) as a promising type of cathode catalyst for air-cathode single chamber microbial fuel cells (SCMFCs). The Pt-DENs, prepared via template synthesis method, have uniform diameter distribution with size range of 3-5 nm. The Pt-DENs then loaded on to a carbon substrate. For comparison, we also electrodeposited Pt on carbon substrate. The calculation shows that the loading amount of Pt-DENs on carbon substrate is about 0.1 mg cm -2, which is three times lower than that of the electrodeposited Pt (0.3 mg cm -2). By measuring batch experiments, the results show that Pt-DENs in air-cathode SCMFCs have a power density of 630 ± 5 mW m -2 and a current density of 5200 ± 10 mA m -2 (based on the projected anodic surface area), which is significantly better than electrodeposited Pt cathodes (power density: 275 ± 5 mW m -2 and current density: 2050 ± 10 mA m -2). Additionally, Pt-DENs-based cathodes resulted in a higher power production with 129.1% as compared to cathode with electrodeposited Pt. This finding suggests that Pt-DENs in MFC cathodes is a better catalyst and has a lower loading amount than electrodeposited Pt, and may serve as a novel and alternative catalyst to previously used noble metals in MFC applications.

  9. Power generation using carbon mesh cathodes with different diffusion layers in microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Yong; Zhang, Fang; Wei, Bin; Liu, Guangli; Zhang, Renduo; Logan, Bruce E.

    An inexpensive carbon material, carbon mesh, was examined to replace the more expensive carbon cloth usually used to make cathodes in air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Three different diffusion layers were tested using carbon mesh: poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS), polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), and Goretex cloth. Carbon mesh with a mixture of PDMS and carbon black as a diffusion layer produced a maximum power density of 1355 ± 62 mW m -2 (normalized to the projected cathode area), which was similar to that obtained with a carbon cloth cathode (1390 ± 72 mW m -2). Carbon mesh with a PTFE diffusion layer produced only a slightly lower (6.6%) maximum power density (1303 ± 48 mW m -2). The Coulombic efficiencies were a function of current density, with the highest value for the carbon mesh and PDMS (79%) larger than that for carbon cloth (63%). The cost of the carbon mesh cathode with PDMS/Carbon or PTFE (excluding catalyst and binder costs) is only 2.5% of the cost of the carbon cloth cathode. These results show that low cost carbon materials such as carbon mesh can be used as the cathode in an MFC without reducing the performance compared to more expensive carbon cloth.

  10. Enhanced stability of multilayer graphene-supported catalysts for polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marinkas, A.; Hempelmann, R.; Heinzel, A.; Peinecke, V.; Radev, I.; Natter, H.

    2015-11-01

    One of the biggest challenges in the field of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFC) is to enhance the lifetime and the long-term stability of PEMFC electrodes, especially of cathodes, furthermore, to reduce their platinum loading, which could lead to a cost reduction for efficient PEMFCs. These demands could be achieved with a new catalyst support architecture consisting of a composite of carbon structures with significant different morphologies. A highly porous cathode catalyst support layer is prepared by addition of various carbon types (carbon black particles, multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT)) to multilayer graphene (MLG). The reported optimized cathodes shows extremely high durability and similar performance to commercial standard cathodes but with 89% lower Pt loading. The accelerated aging protocol (AAP) on the membrane electrode assemblies (MEA) shows that the presence of MLG increases drastically the durability and the Pt-extended electrochemical surface area (ECSA). In fact, after the AAP slightly enhanced performance can be observed for the MLG-containing cathodes instead of a performance loss, which is typical for the commercial carbon-based cathodes. Furthermore, the presence of MLG drastically decreases the ECSA loss rate. The MLG-containing cathodes show up to 6.8 times higher mass-normalized Pt-extended ECSA compared to the commercial standard systems.

  11. Development of a tubular microbial fuel cell (MFC) employing a membrane electrode assembly cathode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jung Rae; Premier, Giuliano C.; Hawkes, Freda R.; Dinsdale, Richard M.; Guwy, Alan J.

    Tubular microbial fuel cells (MFC) with air cathode might be amenable to scale-up but with increasing volume a mechanically robust, cost-effective cathode structure is required. Membrane electrode assemblies (MEA) are investigated in a tubular MFC using cost-effective cation (CEM) or anion (AEM) exchange membrane. The MEA fabrication mechanically combines a cathode electrode with the membrane between a perforated cylindrical polypropylene shell and tube. Hydrogel application between membrane and cathode increases cathode potential by ∼100 mV over a 0-5.5 mA range in a CEM-MEA. Consequently, 6.1 W m -3 based on reactor liquid volume (200 cm 3) are generated compared with 5 W m -3 without hydrogel. Cathode potential is also improved in AEM-MEA using hydrogel. Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) to compare MEA's performance suggests reduced impedance and enhanced membrane-cathode contact area when using hydrogel. The maximum coulombic efficiency observed with CEM-MEA is 71% and 63% with AEM-MEA. Water loss through the membrane varies with external load resistance, indicating that total charge transfer in the MFC is related to electro-osmotic drag of water through the membrane. The MEA developed here has been shown to be mechanically robust, operating for more than six month at this scale without problem.

  12. Power generation by packed-bed air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoyuan; Shi, Juan; Liang, Peng; Wei, Jincheng; Huang, Xia; Zhang, Chuanyi; Logan, Bruce E

    2013-08-01

    Catalysts and catalyst binders are significant portions of the cost of microbial fuel cell (MFC) cathodes. Many materials have been tested as aqueous cathodes, but air-cathodes are needed to avoid energy demands for water aeration. Packed-bed air-cathodes were constructed without expensive binders or diffusion layers using four inexpensive carbon-based materials. Cathodes made from activated carbon produced the largest maximum power density of 676 ± 93 mW/m(2), followed by semi-coke (376 ± 47 mW/m(2)), graphite (122 ± 14 mW/m(2)) and carbon felt (60 ± 43 mW/m(2)). Increasing the mass of activated carbon and semi-coke from 5 to ≥ 15 g significantly reduced power generation because of a reduction in oxygen transfer due to a thicker water layer in the cathode (∼3 or ∼6 cm). These results indicate that a thin packed layer of activated carbon or semi-coke can be used to make inexpensive air-cathodes for MFCs. PMID:23732924

  13. Silver electrodeposition on the activated carbon air cathode for performance improvement in microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pu, Liangtao; Li, Kexun; Chen, Zhihao; Zhang, Peng; Zhang, Xi; Fu, Zhou

    2014-12-01

    The present work was to study silver electrodeposition on the activated carbon (AC) air cathode for performance improvement in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). The treated cathodes were proved to be effective to enhance the performance of MFCs. The maximum power density of MFC with silver electrodeposition time of 50 s (Ag-50) cathode was 1080 ± 60 mW m-2, 69% higher than the bare AC air cathode. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) results showed that zero-valent, monovalent and divalent silver were present to transform mutually, which illustrated that the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) at the cathode took place through four-electron pathway. From electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) analysis, the electrodeposition method made the total resistance of the electrodes largely reduced. Meanwhile the deposited silver had no toxic effects on anode culture but inhibited the biofilm growth of the cathodes. This kind of antimicrobial efficient cathode, prepared with a simple, fast and economical method, was of good benefit to the performance improvement of MFCs.

  14. Iron-based cathode catalyst with enhanced power density in polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Proietti, Eric; Jaouen, Frédéric; Lefèvre, Michel; Larouche, Nicholas; Tian, Juan; Herranz, Juan; Dodelet, Jean-Pol

    2011-08-02

    H(2)-air polymer-electrolyte-membrane fuel cells are electrochemical power generators with potential vehicle propulsion applications. To help reduce their cost and encourage widespread use, research has focused on replacing the expensive Pt-based electrocatalysts in polymer-electrolyte-membrane fuel cells with a lower-cost alternative. Fe-based cathode catalysts are promising contenders, but their power density has been low compared with Pt-based cathodes, largely due to poor mass-transport properties. Here we report an iron-acetate/phenanthroline/zeolitic-imidazolate-framework-derived electrocatalyst with increased volumetric activity and enhanced mass-transport properties. The zeolitic-imidazolate-framework serves as a microporous host for phenanthroline and ferrous acetate to form a catalyst precursor that is subsequently heat treated. A cathode made with the best electrocatalyst from this work, tested in H(2)-O(2,) has a power density of 0.75 W cm(-2) at 0.6 V, a meaningful voltage for polymer-electrolyte-membrane fuel cells operation, comparable with that of a commercial Pt-based cathode tested under identical conditions.

  15. Fabrication and Characterization of Functionally Graded Cathodes for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonet, J.; Kapelski, G.; Bouvard, D.

    2008-02-01

    Solid oxide fuel cells are multi-layered designed. The most prevalent structure is an anode supported cell with a thick porous layer of nickel oxide NiO and yttrium stabilized zirconia (YSZ) composite acting as an anode, a thin dense layer of YSZ as an electrolyte, a composite thin porous layer of lanthanum strontium manganate LSM and YSZ and a current collector layer of porous LSM. Regular operating temperature is 1000 °C. The industrial development requires designing cathodes with acceptable electrochemical and mechanical properties at a lower temperature, typically between 700 and 800 °C. A solution consists in designing composite bulk cathodes with more numerous electro-chemical reaction sites. This requirement could be met by grading the composition of the cathode in increasing the YSZ volume fraction near the electrolyte and the LSM volume fraction near the current collector layer so that the repartition of reaction sites and the interfacial adhesion between the cathode and electrolyte layers are optimal. The fabrication of graded composite cathode has been investigated using a sedimentation process that consists of preparing a suspension containing the powder mixture and allowing the particles to fall by gravity upon a substrate. Different composite cathodes with continuous composition gradient have been obtained by sedimentation of LSM and YSZ powder mixture upon a dense YSZ substrate and subsequent firing. Their compositions and microstructures have been analysed with Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) and Electron Dispersive Spectrometry (EDS).

  16. Electrical performance of low cost cathodes prepared by plasma sputtering deposition in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Lefebvre, Olivier; Tang, Zhe; Fung, Martin P H; Chua, Daniel H C; Chang, In Seop; Ng, How Y

    2012-01-15

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) could potentially be utilized for a variety of applications in the future from biosensors to wastewater treatment. However, the amount of costly platinum (Pt) used as a catalyst should be minimized via innovative deposition methods such as sputtering. In addition, alternative and low-cost catalysts, such as cobalt (Co), should be sought. In this study, ultra low Pt or Co cathodes (0.1 mg cm(-2)) were manufactured by plasma sputtering deposition and scanning electron micrographs revealed nano-clusters of metal catalyst in a porous structure favorable to the three-phase heterogeneous catalytic reaction. When operated in single-chamber air-cathode MFCs, sputtered-Co cathodes generated on average the same power as sputtered-Pt cathodes (0.27 mW cell(-1)) and only 27% less than conventional Pt-ink cathodes with a catalyst load 5 times higher (0.5 mg cm(-2)). Finally, microscopy and molecular analyses showed evidence of biocatalysis activity on metal-free cathodes.

  17. COD removal characteristics in air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoyuan; He, Weihua; Ren, Lijiao; Stager, Jennifer; Evans, Patrick J; Logan, Bruce E

    2015-01-01

    Exoelectrogenic microorganisms in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) compete with other microorganisms for substrate. In order to understand how this affects removal rates, current generation, and coulombic efficiencies (CEs), substrate removal rates were compared in MFCs fed a single, readily biodegradable compound (acetate) or domestic wastewater (WW). Removal rates based on initial test conditions fit first-order kinetics, but rate constants varied with circuit resistance. With filtered WW (100Ω), the rate constant was 0.18h(-)(1), which was higher than acetate or filtered WW with an open circuit (0.10h(-)(1)), but CEs were much lower (15-24%) than acetate. With raw WW (100Ω), COD removal proceeded in two stages: a fast removal stage with high current production, followed by a slower removal with little current. While using MFCs increased COD removal rate due to current generation, secondary processes will be needed to reduce COD to levels suitable for discharge.

  18. Copper cobalt spinel as a high performance cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Shao, Lin; Wang, Qi; Fan, Lishuang; Wang, Pengxiang; Zhang, Naiqing; Sun, Kening

    2016-06-30

    CuCo2O4 spinel prepared via an EDTA-citric acid process was studied as a candidate solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathode material at intermediate temperatures (IT). CuCo2O4 cathodes were measured using thermal gravimetric analysis, X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. AC impedance spectroscopy and DC polarization measurements were used to study the electrode performance. The obtained value of the polarization resistances at 800 °C was 0.12 Ω cm(2) with a maximum power density of 972 mW cm(-2). PMID:27326915

  19. Solid oxide fuel cells having porous cathodes infiltrated with oxygen-reducing catalysts

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Meilin; Liu, Ze; Liu, Mingfei; Nie, Lifang; Mebane, David Spencer; Wilson, Lane Curtis; Surdoval, Wayne

    2014-08-12

    Solid-oxide fuel cells include an electrolyte and an anode electrically coupled to a first surface of the electrolyte. A cathode is provided, which is electrically coupled to a second surface of the electrolyte. The cathode includes a porous backbone having a porosity in a range from about 20% to about 70%. The porous backbone contains a mixed ionic-electronic conductor (MIEC) of a first material infiltrated with an oxygen-reducing catalyst of a second material different from the first material.

  20. Copper cobalt spinel as a high performance cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Shao, Lin; Wang, Qi; Fan, Lishuang; Wang, Pengxiang; Zhang, Naiqing; Sun, Kening

    2016-06-30

    CuCo2O4 spinel prepared via an EDTA-citric acid process was studied as a candidate solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathode material at intermediate temperatures (IT). CuCo2O4 cathodes were measured using thermal gravimetric analysis, X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. AC impedance spectroscopy and DC polarization measurements were used to study the electrode performance. The obtained value of the polarization resistances at 800 °C was 0.12 Ω cm(2) with a maximum power density of 972 mW cm(-2).

  1. Study of azo dye decolorization and determination of cathode microorganism profile in air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Kumru, Mert; Eren, Hilal; Catal, Tunc; Bermek, Hakan; Akarsubaşi, Alper Tunga

    2012-09-01

    Five textile azo dyes, as part of an artificial mixture, were treated in single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cells while simultaneously utilizing acetate for electricity production. Remazol Black, Remazol Brilliant Blue, Remazol Turquoise Blue, Reactive Yellow and Reactive Red at concentrations of 40 or 80 mg L(-1) were decolorized to a similar extent, at averages of 78, 95, 53, 93 and 74%, respectively, in 24 hours. During the process of decolorization, electricity generation from acetate oxidation continued. Power densities obtained in the presence of textile dyes ranged from 347 to 521 mW m(-2) at the current density range of 0.071 - 0.086 mA cm(-2). Microbial community analyses of cathode biofilm exhibited dynamic changes in abundant species following dye decolorization. Upon the addition of the first dye, a major change (63%) in microbial diversity was observed; however, subsequent addition of other dyes did not affect the community profile significantly. Actinobacteria, Aquamicrobium, Mesorhizobium, Ochrobactrum, Thauera, Paracoccus, Achromobacter and Chelatacoccus affiliated phylotypes were the major phylotypes detected. Our results demonstrate that microbial fuel cells could be a promising alternative for treatment of textile wastewaters and an active bacterial community can rapidly be established for simultaneous azo dye decolorization and sustainable electricity generation.

  2. Study of azo dye decolorization and determination of cathode microorganism profile in air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Kumru, Mert; Eren, Hilal; Catal, Tunc; Bermek, Hakan; Akarsubaşi, Alper Tunga

    2012-09-01

    Five textile azo dyes, as part of an artificial mixture, were treated in single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cells while simultaneously utilizing acetate for electricity production. Remazol Black, Remazol Brilliant Blue, Remazol Turquoise Blue, Reactive Yellow and Reactive Red at concentrations of 40 or 80 mg L(-1) were decolorized to a similar extent, at averages of 78, 95, 53, 93 and 74%, respectively, in 24 hours. During the process of decolorization, electricity generation from acetate oxidation continued. Power densities obtained in the presence of textile dyes ranged from 347 to 521 mW m(-2) at the current density range of 0.071 - 0.086 mA cm(-2). Microbial community analyses of cathode biofilm exhibited dynamic changes in abundant species following dye decolorization. Upon the addition of the first dye, a major change (63%) in microbial diversity was observed; however, subsequent addition of other dyes did not affect the community profile significantly. Actinobacteria, Aquamicrobium, Mesorhizobium, Ochrobactrum, Thauera, Paracoccus, Achromobacter and Chelatacoccus affiliated phylotypes were the major phylotypes detected. Our results demonstrate that microbial fuel cells could be a promising alternative for treatment of textile wastewaters and an active bacterial community can rapidly be established for simultaneous azo dye decolorization and sustainable electricity generation. PMID:23240212

  3. Microbial fuel cell performance with non-Pt cathode catalysts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    HaoYu, Eileen; Cheng, Shaoan; Scott, Keith; Logan, Bruce

    Various cathode catalysts prepared from metal porphyrines and phthalocyanines were examined for their oxygen reduction activity in neutral pH media. Electrochemical studies were carried out with metal tetramethoxyphenylporphyrin (TMPP), CoTMPP and FeCoTMPP, and metal phthalocyanine (Pc), FePc, CoPc and FeCuPc, supported on Ketjenblack (KJB) carbon. Iron phthalocyanine supported on KJB (FePc-KJB) carbon demonstrated higher activity towards oxygen reduction than Pt in neutral media. The effect of carbon substrate was investigated by evaluating FePc on Vulcan XC carbon (FePcVC) versus Ketjenblack carbon. FePc-KJB showed higher activity than FePcVC suggesting the catalyst activity could be improved by using carbon substrate with a higher surface area. With FePc-KJB as the MFC cathode catalyst, a power density of 634 mW m -2 was achieved in 50 mM phosphate buffer medium at pH 7, which was higher than that obtained using the precious-metal Pt cathode (593 mW m -2). Under optimum operating conditions (i.e. using a high surface area carbon brush anode and 200 mM PBM as the supporting electrolyte with 1 g L -1 acetate as the substrate), the power density was increased to 2011 mW m -2. This high power output indicates that MFCs with low cost metal macrocycles catalysts is promising in further practical applications.

  4. Mesh optimization for microbial fuel cell cathodes constructed around stainless steel mesh current collectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Fang; Merrill, Matthew D.; Tokash, Justin C.; Saito, Tomonori; Cheng, Shaoan; Hickner, Michael A.; Logan, Bruce E.

    Mesh current collectors made of stainless steel (SS) can be integrated into microbial fuel cell (MFC) cathodes constructed of a reactive carbon black and Pt catalyst mixture and a poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) diffusion layer. It is shown here that the mesh properties of these cathodes can significantly affect performance. Cathodes made from the coarsest mesh (30-mesh) achieved the highest maximum power of 1616 ± 25 mW m -2 (normalized to cathode projected surface area; 47.1 ± 0.7 W m -3 based on liquid volume), while the finest mesh (120-mesh) had the lowest power density (599 ± 57 mW m -2). Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy showed that charge transfer and diffusion resistances decreased with increasing mesh opening size. In MFC tests, the cathode performance was primarily limited by reaction kinetics, and not mass transfer. Oxygen permeability increased with mesh opening size, accounting for the decreased diffusion resistance. At higher current densities, diffusion became a limiting factor, especially for fine mesh with low oxygen transfer coefficients. These results demonstrate the critical nature of the mesh size used for constructing MFC cathodes.

  5. Comparative study on power generation of dual-cathode microbial fuel cell according to polarization methods.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kang-yu; Ryu, Wyan-seuk; Cho, Sung-il; Lim, Kyeong-ho

    2015-11-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) exist in various forms depending on the type of pollutant to be removed and the expected performance. Dual-cathode MFCs, with their simple structure, are capable of removing both organic matter and nitrogen. Moreover, various methods are available for the collection of polarization data, which can be used to calculate the maximum power density, an important factor of MFCs. Many researchers prefer the method of varying the external resistance in a single-cycle due to the short measurement time and high accuracy. This study compared power densities of dual-cathode MFCs in a single-cycle with values calculated over multi-cycles to determine the optimal polarization method. External resistance was varied from high to low and vice versa in the single-cycle, to calculate power density. External resistance was organized in descending order with initial start-up at open circuit voltage (OCV), and then it was organized in descending order again after the initial start-up at 1000 Ω. As a result, power density was underestimated at the anoxic cathode when the external resistance was varied from low to high, and overestimated at the aerobic cathode and anoxic cathode when external resistance at OCV was reduced following initial start-up. In calculating the power densities of dual-cathode MFCs, this paper recommends the method of gradually reducing the external resistance after initial start-up with high external resistance. PMID:26210028

  6. Parameters characterization and optimization of activated carbon (AC) cathodes for microbial fuel cell application.

    PubMed

    Santoro, Carlo; Artyushkova, Kateryna; Babanova, Sofia; Atanassov, Plamen; Ieropoulos, Ioannis; Grattieri, Matteo; Cristiani, Pierangela; Trasatti, Stefano; Li, Baikun; Schuler, Andrew J

    2014-07-01

    Activated carbon (AC) is employed as a cost-effective catalyst for cathodic oxygen reduction in microbial fuel cells (MFC). The fabrication protocols of AC-based cathodes are conducted at different applied pressures (175-3500 psi) and treatment temperatures (25-343°C). The effects of those parameters along with changes in the surface morphology and chemistry on the cathode performances are comprehensively examined. The cathodes are tested in a three-electrode setup and explored in single chamber membraneless MFCs (SCMFCs). The results show that the best performance of the AC-based cathode is achieved when a pressure of 1400 psi is applied followed by heat treatment of 150-200°C for 1h. The influence of the applied pressure and the temperature of the heat treatment on the electrodes and SCMFCs is demonstrated as the result of the variation in the transfer resistance, the surface morphology and surface chemistry of the AC-based cathodes tested.

  7. Continuous flow membrane-less air cathode microbial fuel cell with spunbonded olefin diffusion layer.

    PubMed

    Tugtas, Adile Evren; Cavdar, Pelin; Calli, Baris

    2011-11-01

    The power production performance of a membrane-less air-cathode microbial fuel cell was evaluated for 53 days. Anode and cathode electrodes and the micro-fiber cloth separator were configured by sandwiching the separator between two electrodes. In addition, the air-facing side of the cathode was covered with a spunbonded olefin sheet instead of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) coating to control oxygen diffusion and water loss. The configuration resulted in a low resistance of about 4Ω and a maximum power density of 750 mW/m2. However, as a result of a gradual decrease in the cathode potential, maximum power density decreased to 280 mW/m2. The declining power output was attributed to loss of platinum catalyst (8.26%) and biomass growth (38.44%) on the cathode. Coulombic efficiencies over 55% and no water leakage showed that the spunbonded olefin sheet covering the air-facing side of the cathode can be a cost-effective alternative to PTFE coating.

  8. Parameters characterization and optimization of activated carbon (AC) cathodes for microbial fuel cell application.

    PubMed

    Santoro, Carlo; Artyushkova, Kateryna; Babanova, Sofia; Atanassov, Plamen; Ieropoulos, Ioannis; Grattieri, Matteo; Cristiani, Pierangela; Trasatti, Stefano; Li, Baikun; Schuler, Andrew J

    2014-07-01

    Activated carbon (AC) is employed as a cost-effective catalyst for cathodic oxygen reduction in microbial fuel cells (MFC). The fabrication protocols of AC-based cathodes are conducted at different applied pressures (175-3500 psi) and treatment temperatures (25-343°C). The effects of those parameters along with changes in the surface morphology and chemistry on the cathode performances are comprehensively examined. The cathodes are tested in a three-electrode setup and explored in single chamber membraneless MFCs (SCMFCs). The results show that the best performance of the AC-based cathode is achieved when a pressure of 1400 psi is applied followed by heat treatment of 150-200°C for 1h. The influence of the applied pressure and the temperature of the heat treatment on the electrodes and SCMFCs is demonstrated as the result of the variation in the transfer resistance, the surface morphology and surface chemistry of the AC-based cathodes tested. PMID:24787317

  9. Comparative study on power generation of dual-cathode microbial fuel cell according to polarization methods.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kang-yu; Ryu, Wyan-seuk; Cho, Sung-il; Lim, Kyeong-ho

    2015-11-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) exist in various forms depending on the type of pollutant to be removed and the expected performance. Dual-cathode MFCs, with their simple structure, are capable of removing both organic matter and nitrogen. Moreover, various methods are available for the collection of polarization data, which can be used to calculate the maximum power density, an important factor of MFCs. Many researchers prefer the method of varying the external resistance in a single-cycle due to the short measurement time and high accuracy. This study compared power densities of dual-cathode MFCs in a single-cycle with values calculated over multi-cycles to determine the optimal polarization method. External resistance was varied from high to low and vice versa in the single-cycle, to calculate power density. External resistance was organized in descending order with initial start-up at open circuit voltage (OCV), and then it was organized in descending order again after the initial start-up at 1000 Ω. As a result, power density was underestimated at the anoxic cathode when the external resistance was varied from low to high, and overestimated at the aerobic cathode and anoxic cathode when external resistance at OCV was reduced following initial start-up. In calculating the power densities of dual-cathode MFCs, this paper recommends the method of gradually reducing the external resistance after initial start-up with high external resistance.

  10. Nanostructured Double Perovskite Cathode With Low Sintering Temperature For Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Seona; Jun, Areum; Kwon, Ohhun; Kim, Junyoung; Yoo, Seonyoung; Jeong, Hu Young; Shin, Jeeyoung; Kim, Guntae

    2015-09-21

    This study focuses on reducing the cathode polarization resistance through the use of mixed ionic electronic conductors and the optimization of cathode microstructure to increase the number of electrochemically active sites. Among the available mixed ionic electronic conductors (MIECs), the layered perovskite GdBa0.5 Sr0.5 CoFeO5+δ (GBSCF) was chosen as a cathode material for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells owing to its excellent electrochemical performance and structural stability. The optimized microstructure of a GBSCF-yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) composite cathode was prepared through an infiltration method with careful control of the sintering temperature to achieve high surface area, adequate porosity, and well-organized connection between nanosized particles to transfer electrons. A symmetric cell shows outstanding results, with the cathode exhibiting an area-specific resistance of 0.006 Ω cm(2) at 700 °C. The maximum power density of a single cell using Ce-Pd anode with a thickness of ∼80 μm electrolyte was ∼0.6 W cm(-2) at 700 °C.

  11. Microbial fuel cell with an algae-assisted cathode: A preliminary assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    González del Campo, Araceli; Cañizares, Pablo; Rodrigo, Manuel A.; Fernández, Francisco J.; Lobato, Justo

    2013-11-01

    A microbial fuel cell (MFC) with an algae-assisted cathode, i.e., a system where the oxygen required by the cathode is not provided by aeration but by the photosynthetic process of the algae (Chlorella vulgaris), has been studied. The cathode was illuminated for 12 h each day (from 8:00 h to 20:00 h). 25 days was necessary to achieve steady state conditions. The time evolution of dissolved oxygen and cell voltage were assessed over the course of each day. As expected, the dissolved oxygen values were not constant throughout the day, reaching maximum values between 14:00 h and 20:00 h when dark phase reactions began and the algae started to consume oxygen. Cell voltage (Rext 120 Ω) followed the same trend as the oxygen profile. The supply of CO2 in the cathode was also studied, and half an hour was enough time to get the system working properly. During the acclimation stage, power density increased up to 13.5 mW m-2 at steady state conditions. However, impedance analysis showed that polarization resistance was higher at the cathode than at the anode. Nevertheless, it can be concluded that the studied system is a feasible method to treat wastewater in a self-sustainable way.

  12. Effect of cathode electron acceptors on simultaneous anaerobic sulfide and nitrate removal in microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Cai, Jing; Zheng, Ping; Mahmood, Qaisar

    2016-01-01

    The current investigation reports the effect of cathode electron acceptors on simultaneous sulfide and nitrate removal in two-chamber microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Potassium permanganate and potassium ferricyanide were common cathode electron acceptors and evaluated for substrate removal and electricity generation. The abiotic MFCs produced electricity through spontaneous electrochemical oxidation of sulfide. In comparison with abiotic MFC, the biotic MFC showed better ability for simultaneous nitrate and sulfide removal along with electricity generation. Keeping external resistance of 1,000 Ω, both MFCs showed good capacities for substrate removal where nitrogen and sulfate were the main end products. The steady voltage with potassium permanganate electrodes was nearly twice that of with potassium ferricyanide. Cyclic voltammetry curves confirmed that the potassium permanganate had higher catalytic activity than potassium ferricyanide. The potassium permanganate may be a suitable choice as cathode electron acceptor for enhanced electricity generation during simultaneous treatment of sulfide and nitrate in MFCs. PMID:26901739

  13. Nonactivated and Activated Biochar Derived from Bananas as Alternative Cathode Catalyst in Microbial Fuel Cells

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Haoran; Deng, Lifang; Qi, Yujie; Kobayashi, Noriyuki; Tang, Jiahuan

    2014-01-01

    Nonactivated and activated biochars have been successfully prepared by bananas at different thermotreatment temperatures. The activated biochar generated at 900°C (Biochar-act900) exhibited improved oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) and oxygen evolution reaction (OER) performances in alkaline media, in terms of the onset potential and generated current density. Rotating disk electron result shows that the average of 2.65 electrons per oxygen molecule was transferred during ORR of Biochar-act900. The highest power density of 528.2 mW/m2 and the maximum stable voltage of 0.47 V were obtained by employing Biochar-act900 as cathode catalyst, which is comparable to the Pt/C cathode. Owning to these advantages, it is expected that the banana-derived biochar cathode can find application in microbial fuel cell systems. PMID:25243229

  14. Nonactivated and activated biochar derived from bananas as alternative cathode catalyst in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Haoran; Deng, Lifang; Qi, Yujie; Kobayashi, Noriyuki; Tang, Jiahuan

    2014-01-01

    Nonactivated and activated biochars have been successfully prepared by bananas at different thermotreatment temperatures. The activated biochar generated at 900°C (Biochar-act900) exhibited improved oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) and oxygen evolution reaction (OER) performances in alkaline media, in terms of the onset potential and generated current density. Rotating disk electron result shows that the average of 2.65 electrons per oxygen molecule was transferred during ORR of Biochar-act900. The highest power density of 528.2 mW/m(2) and the maximum stable voltage of 0.47 V were obtained by employing Biochar-act900 as cathode catalyst, which is comparable to the Pt/C cathode. Owning to these advantages, it is expected that the banana-derived biochar cathode can find application in microbial fuel cell systems.

  15. Anodic and cathodic microbial communities in single chamber microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Daghio, Matteo; Gandolfi, Isabella; Bestetti, Giuseppina; Franzetti, Andrea; Guerrini, Edoardo; Cristiani, Pierangela

    2015-01-25

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are a rapidly growing technology for energy production from wastewater and biomasses. In a MFC, a microbial biofilm oxidizes organic matter and transfers electrons from reduced compounds to an anode as the electron acceptor by extracellular electron transfer (EET). The aim of this work was to characterize the microbial communities operating in a Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell (SCMFC) fed with acetate and inoculated with a biogas digestate in order to gain more insight into anodic and cathodic EET. Taxonomic characterization of the communities was carried out by Illumina sequencing of a fragment of the 16S rRNA gene. Microorganisms belonging to Geovibrio genus and purple non-sulfur (PNS) bacteria were found to be dominant in the anodic biofilm. The alkaliphilic genus Nitrincola and anaerobic microorganisms belonging to Porphyromonadaceae family were the most abundant bacteria in the cathodic biofilm.

  16. Effects of pore formers on microstructure and performance of cathode membranes for solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nie, Lifang; Liu, Juncheng; Zhang, Yujun; Liu, Meilin

    La 0.6Sr 0.4Co 0.2Fe 0.8O 3- δ (LSCF) is the most widely used cathode material for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells. In the present communication, porous LSCF cathodes are fabricated by tape casting, a low-cost and reproducible fabrication process. The effects of four different pore formers, namely, graphite, carbon black, rice starch, and corn starch, on the microstructure and electrochemical performance of the LSCF cathode are investigated. Examination of the microstructures reveals that the shape of the pores, the pore size, and the pore distribution in the final ceramic are related to the type of pore formers. Impedance analysis and cell testing show that the best performance is obtained from the cathode using graphite as the pore former. The microstructure indicates that graphite results in a porous LSCF cathode with a large surface area and high porosity, which can offer a considerably long triple phase boundary for catalytic reactions as well as channels for gas phase transport.

  17. Enhanced Oxygen and Hydroxide Transport in a Cathode Interface by Efficient Antibacterial Property of a Silver Nanoparticle-Modified, Activated Carbon Cathode in Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Da; Qu, Youpeng; Liu, Jia; Liu, Guohong; Zhang, Jie; Feng, Yujie

    2016-08-17

    A biofilm growing on an air cathode is responsible for the decreased performance of microbial fuel cells (MFCs). For the undesired biofilm to be minimized, silver nanoparticles were synthesized on activated carbon as the cathodic catalyst (Ag/AC) in MFCs. Ag/AC enhanced maximum power density by 14.6% compared to that of a bare activated carbon cathode (AC) due to the additional silver catalysis. After operating MFCs over five months, protein content on the Ag/AC cathode was only 38.3% of that on the AC cathode, which resulted in a higher oxygen concentration diffusing through the Ag/AC cathode. In addition, a lower pH increment (0.2 units) was obtained near the Ag/AC catalyst surface after biofouling compared to 0.8 units of the AC cathode, indicating that less biofilm on the Ag/AC cathode had a minor resistance on hydroxide transported from the catalyst layer interfaces to the bulk solution. Therefore, less decrements of the Ag/AC activity and MFC performance were obtained. This result indicated that accelerated transport of oxygen and hydroxide, benefitting from the antibacterial property of the cathode, could efficiently maintain higher cathode stability during long-term operation. PMID:27441786

  18. Pore Scale Modeling of the Reactive Transport of Chromium in the Cathode of a Solid Oxide Fuel Cell

    SciTech Connect

    Ryan, Emily M.; Tartakovsky, Alexandre M.; Recknagle, Kurtis P.; Khaleel, Mohammad A.; Amon, Cristina

    2011-01-01

    We present a pore scale model of a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathode. Volatile chromium species are known to migrate from the current collector of the SOFC into the cathode where over time they decrease the voltage output of the fuel cell. A pore scale model is used to investigate the reactive transport of chromium species in the cathode and to study the driving forces of chromium poisoning. A multi-scale modeling approach is proposed which uses a cell level model of the cathode, air channel and current collector to determine the boundary conditions for a pore scale model of a section of the cathode. The pore scale model uses a discrete representation of the cathode to explicitly model the surface reactions of oxygen and chromium with a cathode material. The pore scale model is used to study the reaction mechanisms of chromium by considering the effects of reaction rates, diffusion coefficients, chromium vaporization, and oxygen consumption on chromium’s deposition in the cathode. The study shows that chromium poisoning is most significantly affected by the chromium reaction rates in the cathode and that the reaction rates are a function of the local current density in the cathode.

  19. Effects of hydraulic pressure on the performance of single chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Shaoan; Liu, Weifeng; Guo, Jian; Sun, Dan; Pan, Bin; Ye, Yaoli; Ding, Weijun; Huang, Haobin; Li, Fujian

    2014-06-15

    Scaling up of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) without losing power density requires a thorough understanding of the effect of hydraulic pressure on MFC performance. In this work, the performance of an activated carbon air-cathode MFC was evaluated under different hydraulic pressures. The MFC under 100 mmH2O hydraulic pressure produced a maximum power density of 1260 ± 24 mW m(-2), while the power density decreased by 24.4% and 44.7% as the hydraulic pressure increased to 500 mmH2O and 2000 mmH2O, respectively. Notably, the performance of both the anode and the cathode had decreased under high hydraulic pressures. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy tests of the cathode indicated that both charge transfer resistance and diffusion transfer resistance increased with the increase in hydraulic pressure. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis of PCR-amplified partial 16S rRNA genes demonstrated that the similarity among anodic biofilm communities under different hydraulic pressures was ≥ 90%, and the communities of all MFCs were dominated by Geobacter sp. These results suggested that the reduction in power output of the single chamber air-cathode MFC under high hydraulic pressures can be attributed to water flooding of the cathode and suppression the metabolism of anodic exoelectrogenic bacteria.

  20. Electricity generation and brewery wastewater treatment from sequential anode-cathode microbial fuel cell*

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Qing; Wu, Ying; Zhao, Li-xin; Sun, Qian; Kong, Fan-ying

    2010-01-01

    A sequential anode-cathode double-chamber microbial fuel cell (MFC), in which the effluent of anode chamber was used as a continuous feed for an aerated cathode chamber, was constructed in this experiment to investigate the performance of brewery wastewater treatment in conjugation with electricity generation. Carbon fiber was used as anode and plain carbon felt with biofilm as cathode. When hydraulic retention time (HRT) was 14.7 h, a relatively high chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal efficiency of 91.7%–95.7% was achieved under long-term stable operation. The MFC displayed an open circuit voltage of 0.434 V and a maximum power density of 830 mW/m3 at an external resistance of 300 Ω. To estimate the electrochemical performance of the MFC, electrochemical measurements were carried out and showed that polarization resistance of anode was the major limiting factor in the MFC. Since a high COD removal efficiency was achieved, we conclude that the sequential anode-cathode MFC constructed with bio-cathode in this experiment could provide a new approach for brewery wastewater treatment. PMID:20104642

  1. Real-time thermal imaging of solid oxide fuel cell cathode activity in working condition.

    PubMed

    Montanini, Roberto; Quattrocchi, Antonino; Piccolo, Sebastiano A; Amato, Alessandra; Trocino, Stefano; Zignani, Sabrina C; Faro, Massimiliano Lo; Squadrito, Gaetano

    2016-09-01

    Electrochemical methods such as voltammetry and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy are effective for quantifying solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) operational performance, but not for identifying and monitoring the chemical processes that occur on the electrodes' surface, which are thought to be strictly related to the SOFCs' efficiency. Because of their high operating temperature, mechanical failure or cathode delamination is a common shortcoming of SOFCs that severely affects their reliability. Infrared thermography may provide a powerful tool for probing in situ SOFC electrode processes and the materials' structural integrity, but, due to the typical design of pellet-type cells, a complete optical access to the electrode surface is usually prevented. In this paper, a specially designed SOFC is introduced, which allows temperature distribution to be measured over all the cathode area while still preserving the electrochemical performance of the device. Infrared images recorded under different working conditions are then processed by means of a dedicated image processing algorithm for quantitative data analysis. Results reported in the paper highlight the effectiveness of infrared thermal imaging in detecting the onset of cell failure during normal operation and in monitoring cathode activity when the cell is fed with different types of fuels.

  2. Real-time thermal imaging of solid oxide fuel cell cathode activity in working condition.

    PubMed

    Montanini, Roberto; Quattrocchi, Antonino; Piccolo, Sebastiano A; Amato, Alessandra; Trocino, Stefano; Zignani, Sabrina C; Faro, Massimiliano Lo; Squadrito, Gaetano

    2016-09-01

    Electrochemical methods such as voltammetry and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy are effective for quantifying solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) operational performance, but not for identifying and monitoring the chemical processes that occur on the electrodes' surface, which are thought to be strictly related to the SOFCs' efficiency. Because of their high operating temperature, mechanical failure or cathode delamination is a common shortcoming of SOFCs that severely affects their reliability. Infrared thermography may provide a powerful tool for probing in situ SOFC electrode processes and the materials' structural integrity, but, due to the typical design of pellet-type cells, a complete optical access to the electrode surface is usually prevented. In this paper, a specially designed SOFC is introduced, which allows temperature distribution to be measured over all the cathode area while still preserving the electrochemical performance of the device. Infrared images recorded under different working conditions are then processed by means of a dedicated image processing algorithm for quantitative data analysis. Results reported in the paper highlight the effectiveness of infrared thermal imaging in detecting the onset of cell failure during normal operation and in monitoring cathode activity when the cell is fed with different types of fuels. PMID:27607294

  3. Composite Cathode for High-Power Density Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Ilwon Kim; Scott Barnett; Yi Jiang; Manoj Pillai; Nikkia McDonald; Dan Gostovic; Zhongryang Zhan; Jiang Liu

    2004-01-31

    Reduction of solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) operating temperature will play a key role in reducing the stack cost by allowing the use of low-cost metallic interconnects and new approaches to sealing, while making applications such as transportation more feasible. Reported results for anode-supported SOFCs show that cathode polarization resistance is the primary barrier to achieving high power densities at operating temperatures of 700 C and lower. This project aims to identify and develop composite cathodes that could reduce SOFC operating temperatures below 700 C. This effort focuses on study and use of (La,Sr)(Co,Fe)O{sub 3} (LSCF) based composite cathodes, which have arguably the best potential to substantially improve on the currently-used, (La,Sr)MnO{sub 3}-Yttria-stabilized Zirconia. During this Phase I, it was successfully demonstrated that high performances can be achieved with LSCF/Gadolinium-Doped Ceria composite cathodes on Ni-based anode supported cells operating at 700 C or lower. We studied electrochemical reactions at LSCF/Yttria-stabilized Zirconia (YSZ) interfaces, and observed chemical reactions between LSCF and YSZ. By using ceria electrolytes or YSZ electrolytes with ceria diffusion barrier layers, the chemical reactions between LSCF and electrolytes were prevented under cathode firing conditions necessary for the optimal adhesion of the cathodes. The protection provided by ceria layer is expected to be adequate for stable long-term cathode performances, but more testing is needed to verify this. Using ceria-based barrier layers, high performance Ni-YSZ anode supported cells have been demonstrated with maximum power densities of 0.8W/cm2 at 700 C and 1.6W/cm{sup 2} at 800 C. Ni-SDC anode supported cells with SDC electrolytes yielded >1W/cm{sup 2} at 600 C. We speculate that the power output of Ni-YSZ anode supported cell at 700 C and lower, was limited by the quality of the Ceria and Ceria YSZ interface. Improvements in the low

  4. Testing of a cathode fabricated by painting with a brush pen for anode-supported tubular solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Renzhu; Zhao, Chunhua; Li, Junliang; Wang, Shaorong; Wen, Zhaoyin; Wen, Tinglian

    We have studied the properties of a cathode fabricated by painting with a brush pen for use with anode-supported tubular solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). The porous cathode connects well with the electrolyte. A preliminary examination of a single tubular cell, consisting of a Ni-YSZ anode support tube, a Ni-ScSZ anode functional layer, a ScSZ electrolyte film, and a LSM-ScSZ cathode fabricated by painting with a brush pen, has been carried out, and an improved performance is obtained. The ohmic resistance of the cathode side clearly decreases, falling to a value only 37% of that of the comparable cathode made by dip-coating at 850 °C. The single cell with the painted cathode generates a maximum power density of 405 mW cm -2 at 850 °C, when operating with humidified hydrogen.

  5. In-situ electrochemically active surface area evaluation of an open-cathode polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell stack

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torija, Sergio; Prieto-Sanchez, Laura; Ashton, Sean J.

    2016-09-01

    The ability to evaluate the electrochemically active surface area (ECSA) of fuel cell electrodes is crucial toward characterising designs and component suites in-situ, particularly when evaluating component durability in endurance testing, since it is a measure of the electrode area available to take part in the fuel cell reactions. Conventional methods to obtain the ECSA using cyclic voltammetry, however, rely on potentiostats that cannot be easily scaled to simultaneously evaluate all cells in a fuel cell stack of practical size, which is desirable in fuel cell development. In-situ diagnostics of an open-cathode fuel cell stack are furthermore challenging because the cells do not each possess an enclosed cathode compartment; instead, the cathodes are rather open to the environment. Here we report on a diagnostic setup that allows the electrochemically active surface area of each cell anode or cathode in an open-cathode fuel cell stack to be evaluated in-situ and simultaneously, with high resolution and reproducibility, using an easily scalable chronopotentiometry methodology and a gas-tight stack enclosure.

  6. An investigation of anode and cathode materials in photomicrobial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Kenneth; Thorne, Rebecca J; Cameron, Petra J

    2016-02-28

    Photomicrobial fuel cells (p-MFCs) are devices that use photosynthetic organisms (such as cyanobacteria or algae) to turn light energy into electrical energy. In a p-MFC, the anode accepts electrons from microorganisms that are either growing directly on the anode surface (biofilm) or are free floating in solution (planktonic). The nature of both the anode and cathode material is critical for device efficiency. An ideal anode is biocompatible and facilitates direct electron transfer from the microorganisms, with no need for an electron mediator. For a p-MFC, there is the additional requirement that the anode should not prevent light from perfusing through the photosynthetic cells. The cathode should facilitate the rapid reaction of protons and oxygen to form water so as not to rate limit the device. In this paper, we first review the range of anode and cathode materials currently used in p-MFCs. We then present our own data comparing cathode materials in a p-MFC and our first results using porous ceramic anodes in a mediator-free p-MFC. PMID:26755764

  7. An investigation of anode and cathode materials in photomicrobial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Kenneth; Thorne, Rebecca J; Cameron, Petra J

    2016-02-28

    Photomicrobial fuel cells (p-MFCs) are devices that use photosynthetic organisms (such as cyanobacteria or algae) to turn light energy into electrical energy. In a p-MFC, the anode accepts electrons from microorganisms that are either growing directly on the anode surface (biofilm) or are free floating in solution (planktonic). The nature of both the anode and cathode material is critical for device efficiency. An ideal anode is biocompatible and facilitates direct electron transfer from the microorganisms, with no need for an electron mediator. For a p-MFC, there is the additional requirement that the anode should not prevent light from perfusing through the photosynthetic cells. The cathode should facilitate the rapid reaction of protons and oxygen to form water so as not to rate limit the device. In this paper, we first review the range of anode and cathode materials currently used in p-MFCs. We then present our own data comparing cathode materials in a p-MFC and our first results using porous ceramic anodes in a mediator-free p-MFC.

  8. Copper-substituted perovskite compositions for solid oxide fuel cell cathodes and oxygen reduction electrodes in other electrochemical devices

    DOEpatents

    Rieke, Peter C.; Coffey, Gregory W.; Pederson, Larry R.; Marina, Olga A.; Hardy, John S.; Singh, Prabhaker; Thomsen, Edwin C.

    2010-07-20

    The present invention provides novel compositions that find advantageous use in making electrodes for electrochemical cells. Also provided are electrochemical devices that include active oxygen reduction electrodes, such as solid oxide fuel cells, sensors, pumps and the like. The compositions comprises a copper-substituted ferrite perovskite material. The invention also provides novel methods for making and using the electrode compositions and solid oxide fuel cells and solid oxide fuel cell assemblies having cathodes comprising the compositions.

  9. Analysis of liquid water formation in polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell flow fields with a dry cathode supply

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gößling, Sönke; Klages, Merle; Haußmann, Jan; Beckhaus, Peter; Messerschmidt, Matthias; Arlt, Tobias; Kardjilov, Nikolay; Manke, Ingo; Scholta, Joachim; Heinzel, Angelika

    2016-02-01

    PEM fuel cells can be operated within a wide range of different operating conditions. In this paper, the special case of operating a PEM fuel cell with a dry cathode supply and without external humidification of the cathode, is considered. A deeper understanding of the water management in the cells is essential for choosing the optimal operation strategy for a specific system. In this study a theoretical model is presented which aims to predict the location in the flow field at which liquid water forms at the cathode. It is validated with neutron images of a PEM fuel cell visualizing the locations at which liquid water forms in the fuel cell flow field channels. It is shown that the inclusion of the GDL diffusion resistance in the model is essential to describe the liquid water formation process inside the fuel cell. Good agreement of model predictions and measurement results has been achieved. While the model has been developed and validated especially for the operation with a dry cathode supply, the model is also applicable to fuel cells with a humidified cathode stream.

  10. Co-flow anode/cathode supply heat exchanger for a solid-oxide fuel cell assembly

    DOEpatents

    Haltiner, Jr., Karl J.; Kelly, Sean M.

    2005-11-22

    In a solid-oxide fuel cell assembly, a co-flow heat exchanger is provided in the flow paths of the reformate gas and the cathode air ahead of the fuel cell stack, the reformate gas being on one side of the exchanger and the cathode air being on the other. The reformate gas is at a substantially higher temperature than is desired in the stack, and the cathode gas is substantially cooler than desired. In the co-flow heat exchanger, the temperatures of the reformate and cathode streams converge to nearly the same temperature at the outlet of the exchanger. Preferably, the heat exchanger is formed within an integrated component manifold (ICM) for a solid-oxide fuel cell assembly.

  11. High-performance cathode-supported solid oxide fuel cells with copper cermet anodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Lin; Ye, Xiaofeng; Zhan, Zhongliang

    2011-08-01

    Thin film solid oxide fuel cells, composed of thin coatings of 8 mol% Y2O3-stabilized ZrO2 (YSZ), thick substrates of infiltrated La0.8S0.2FeO3 (LSF)-YSZ cathodes and CuO-SDC (Ce0.85Sm0.15O1.925)-ceria anodes, are fabricated using the conventional tape casting and infiltration methods. Infiltrated LSF-YSZ cathodes exhibit a much lower interfacial polarization resistance than (La0.8Sr0.2)0.98MnO3 (LSM)-YSZ cathodes due to the mixed ionic and electronic conducting behavior of LSF, especially at low operation temperatures. The single cell has shown good and stable performance in hydrogen and hydrocarbon fuels. Maximum power densities for hydrogen, propane, dodecane and low sulfur diesel at 800 °C are 0.62 W cm-2, 0.40 W cm-2, 0.37 W cm-2 and 0.36 W cm-2, respectively.

  12. Manganese dioxide as an alternative cathodic catalyst to platinum in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lixia; Liu, Chengshuai; Zhuang, Li; Li, Weishan; Zhou, Shungui; Zhang, Jintao

    2009-05-15

    In this paper, three manganese dioxide materials, alpha-MnO(2), beta-MnO(2), gamma-MnO(2) were tested as alternative cathodic catalysts to platinum (Pt) in air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Prepared via hydrothermal method, the manganese dioxides were characterized by X-ray powder diffraction patterns (XRD), the Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) method and their average oxidation states (AOS) were determined by the potential voltammetric titration method. The electro-catalytic activity of MnO(2) in neutral pH solution was determined by linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) and the results showed that all manganese dioxides can catalyze oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in neutral medium with different catalytic activities. beta-MnO(2) appeared to hold the highest catalytic activity due to its highest BET surface area and AOS. Beta-MnO(2) was further used as cathode catalyst in both cube and tube air-cathode MFCs, in which using Klebsiella pneumoniae (K. pneumoniae) biofilm as biocatalyst and utilizing glucose as a substrate in the anode chamber. It was found that tube MFC produced higher output power, with the maximum volumetric power density of 3773+/-347 mW/m(3), than cube MFC. This study suggests that using beta-MnO(2) instead of Pt could potentially improve the feasibility of scaling up MFC designs for real applications by lowering production cost.

  13. Solid oxide fuel cell composite cathodes based on perovskite and fluorite structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sadykov, Vladislav; Mezentseva, Natalia; Usoltsev, Vladimir; Sadovskaya, Ekaterina; Ishchenko, Arkady; Pavlova, Svetlana; Bespalko, Yulia; Kharlamova, Tamara; Zevak, Ekaterina; Salanov, Aleksei; Krieger, Tamara; Belyaev, Vladimir; Bobrenok, Oleg; Uvarov, Nikolai; Okhlupin, Yury; Smorygo, Oleg; Smirnova, Alevtina; Singh, Prabhakar; Vlasov, Aleksandr; Korobeynikov, Mikhail; Bryazgin, Aleksandr; Kalinin, Peter; Arzhannikov, Andrei

    This work presents the results related to the functionally graded fluorite (F)-perovskite (P) nanocomposite cathodes for IT SOFC. Nanocrystalline fluorites (GDC, ScCeSZ) and perovskites (LSrMn, LSrFNi) were synthesized by Pechini method. Nanocomposites were prepared by the ultrasonic dispersion of F and P powders in isopropanol with addition of polyvinyl butyral. Different techniques for deposition and sintering of functionally graded cathode materials were applied including traditional approaches as well as original methods, such as radiation-thermal sintering under electron beam or microwave radiation. Morphology, microstructure and elemental composition of nanocomposites was characterized by XRD and HRTEM/SEM with EDX. Even for dense composites, the sizes of perovskite and fluorite domains remain in the nanorange providing developed P-F interfaces. Oxygen isotope heteroexchange and conductivity/weight relaxation studies demonstrated that these interfaces provide a path for fast oxygen diffusion. The redistribution of the elements between P and F phases in nanocomposites occurs without formation of insulating zirconate phases. Button-size fuel cells with nanocomposite functionally graded cathodes, thin YSZ layers and anode Ni/YSZ cermet (either bulk or supported on Ni-Al foam substrates) were manufactured. For optimized composition and functionally graded design of P-F nanocomposite cathodes, a stable performance in the intermediate temperature range with maximum power density up to 0.5 W cm -2 at 700 °C in wet H 2/air feeds was demonstrated.

  14. Modeling and validation of single-chamber microbial fuel cell cathode biofilm growth and response to oxidant gas composition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ou, Shiqi; Zhao, Yi; Aaron, Douglas S.; Regan, John M.; Mench, Matthew M.

    2016-10-01

    This work describes experiments and computational simulations to analyze single-chamber, air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) performance and cathodic limitations in terms of current generation, power output, mass transport, biomass competition, and biofilm growth. Steady-state and transient cathode models were developed and experimentally validated. Two cathode gas mixtures were used to explore oxygen transport in the cathode: the MFCs exposed to a helium-oxygen mixture (heliox) produced higher current and power output than the group of MFCs exposed to air or a nitrogen-oxygen mixture (nitrox), indicating a dependence on gas-phase transport in the cathode. Multi-substance transport, biological reactions, and electrochemical reactions in a multi-layer and multi-biomass cathode biofilm were also simulated in a transient model. The transient model described biofilm growth over 15 days while providing insight into mass transport and cathodic dissolved species concentration profiles during biofilm growth. Simulation results predict that the dissolved oxygen content and diffusion in the cathode are key parameters affecting the power output of the air-cathode MFC system, with greater oxygen content in the cathode resulting in increased power output and fully-matured biomass.

  15. External CO2 and water supplies for enhancing electrical power generation of air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Ishizaki, So; Fujiki, Itto; Sano, Daisuke; Okabe, Satoshi

    2014-10-01

    Alkalization on the cathode electrode limits the electrical power generation of air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs), and thus external proton supply to the cathode electrode is essential to enhance the electrical power generation. In this study, the effects of external CO2 and water supplies to the cathode electrode on the electrical power generation were investigated, and then the relative contributions of CO2 and water supplies to the total proton consumption were experimentally evaluated. The CO2 supply decreased the cathode pH and consequently increased the power generation. Carbonate dissolution was the main proton source under ambient air conditions, which provides about 67% of total protons consumed for the cathode reaction. It is also critical to adequately control the water content on the cathode electrode of air-cathode MFCs because the carbonate dissolution was highly dependent on water content. On the basis of these experimental results, the power density was increased by 400% (143.0 ± 3.5 mW/m(2) to 575.0 ± 36.0 mW/m(2)) by supplying a humid gas containing 50% CO2 to the cathode chamber. This study demonstrates that the simultaneous CO2 and water supplies to the cathode electrode were effective to increase the electrical power generation of air-cathode MFCs for the first time.

  16. Modeling and validation of single-chamber microbial fuel cell cathode biofilm growth and response to oxidant gas composition

    DOE PAGES

    Ou, Shiqi; Zhao, Yi; Aaron, Douglas S.; Regan, John M.; Mench, Matthew M.

    2016-08-15

    This work describes experiments and computational simulations to analyze single-chamber, air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) performance and cathodic limitations in terms of current generation, power output, mass transport, biomass competition, and biofilm growth. Steady-state and transient cathode models were developed and experimentally validated. Two cathode gas mixtures were used to explore oxygen transport in the cathode: the MFCs exposed to a helium-oxygen mixture (heliox) produced higher current and power output than the group of MFCs exposed to air or a nitrogen-oxygen mixture (nitrox), indicating a dependence on gas-phase transport in the cathode. Multi-substance transport, biological reactions, and electrochemical reactions inmore » a multi-layer and multi-biomass cathode biofilm were also simulated in a transient model. The transient model described biofilm growth over 15 days while providing insight into mass transport and cathodic dissolved species concentration profiles during biofilm growth. Lastly, simulation results predict that the dissolved oxygen content and diffusion in the cathode are key parameters affecting the power output of the air-cathode MFC system, with greater oxygen content in the cathode resulting in increased power output and fully-matured biomass.« less

  17. Core-shell Au-Pd nanoparticles as cathode catalysts for microbial fuel cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Gaixiu; Chen, Dong; Lv, Pengmei; Kong, Xiaoying; Sun, Yongming; Wang, Zhongming; Yuan, Zhenhong; Liu, Hui; Yang, Jun

    2016-10-01

    Bimetallic nanoparticles with core-shell structures usually display enhanced catalytic properties due to the lattice strain created between the core and shell regions. In this study, we demonstrate the application of bimetallic Au-Pd nanoparticles with an Au core and a thin Pd shell as cathode catalysts in microbial fuel cells, which represent a promising technology for wastewater treatment, while directly generating electrical energy. In specific, in comparison with the hollow structured Pt nanoparticles, a benchmark for the electrocatalysis, the bimetallic core-shell Au-Pd nanoparticles are found to have superior activity and stability for oxygen reduction reaction in a neutral condition due to the strong electronic interaction and lattice strain effect between the Au core and the Pd shell domains. The maximum power density generated in a membraneless single-chamber microbial fuel cell running on wastewater with core-shell Au-Pd as cathode catalysts is ca. 16.0 W m‑3 and remains stable over 150 days, clearly illustrating the potential of core-shell nanostructures in the applications of microbial fuel cells.

  18. Core-shell Au-Pd nanoparticles as cathode catalysts for microbial fuel cell applications

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Gaixiu; Chen, Dong; Lv, Pengmei; Kong, Xiaoying; Sun, Yongming; Wang, Zhongming; Yuan, Zhenhong; Liu, Hui; Yang, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Bimetallic nanoparticles with core-shell structures usually display enhanced catalytic properties due to the lattice strain created between the core and shell regions. In this study, we demonstrate the application of bimetallic Au-Pd nanoparticles with an Au core and a thin Pd shell as cathode catalysts in microbial fuel cells, which represent a promising technology for wastewater treatment, while directly generating electrical energy. In specific, in comparison with the hollow structured Pt nanoparticles, a benchmark for the electrocatalysis, the bimetallic core-shell Au-Pd nanoparticles are found to have superior activity and stability for oxygen reduction reaction in a neutral condition due to the strong electronic interaction and lattice strain effect between the Au core and the Pd shell domains. The maximum power density generated in a membraneless single-chamber microbial fuel cell running on wastewater with core-shell Au-Pd as cathode catalysts is ca. 16.0 W m−3 and remains stable over 150 days, clearly illustrating the potential of core-shell nanostructures in the applications of microbial fuel cells. PMID:27734945

  19. Inkjet-Printed Porous Silver Thin Film as a Cathode for a Low-Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cell.

    PubMed

    Yu, Chen-Chiang; Baek, Jong Dae; Su, Chun-Hao; Fan, Liangdong; Wei, Jun; Liao, Ying-Chih; Su, Pei-Chen

    2016-04-27

    In this work we report a porous silver thin film cathode that was fabricated by a simple inkjet printing process for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cell applications. The electrochemical performance of the inkjet-printed silver cathode was studied at 300-450 °C and was compared with that of silver cathodes that were fabricated by the typical sputtering method. Inkjet-printed silver cathodes showed lower electrochemical impedance due to their porous structure, which facilitated oxygen gaseous diffusion and oxygen surface adsorption-dissociation reactions. A typical sputtered nanoporous silver cathode became essentially dense after the operation and showed high impedance due to a lack of oxygen supply. The results of long-term fuel cell operation show that the cell with an inkjet-printed cathode had a more stable current output for more than 45 h at 400 °C. A porous silver cathode is required for high fuel cell performance, and the simple inkjet printing technique offers an alternative method of fabrication for such a desirable porous structure with the required thermal-morphological stability.

  20. Inkjet-Printed Porous Silver Thin Film as a Cathode for a Low-Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cell.

    PubMed

    Yu, Chen-Chiang; Baek, Jong Dae; Su, Chun-Hao; Fan, Liangdong; Wei, Jun; Liao, Ying-Chih; Su, Pei-Chen

    2016-04-27

    In this work we report a porous silver thin film cathode that was fabricated by a simple inkjet printing process for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cell applications. The electrochemical performance of the inkjet-printed silver cathode was studied at 300-450 °C and was compared with that of silver cathodes that were fabricated by the typical sputtering method. Inkjet-printed silver cathodes showed lower electrochemical impedance due to their porous structure, which facilitated oxygen gaseous diffusion and oxygen surface adsorption-dissociation reactions. A typical sputtered nanoporous silver cathode became essentially dense after the operation and showed high impedance due to a lack of oxygen supply. The results of long-term fuel cell operation show that the cell with an inkjet-printed cathode had a more stable current output for more than 45 h at 400 °C. A porous silver cathode is required for high fuel cell performance, and the simple inkjet printing technique offers an alternative method of fabrication for such a desirable porous structure with the required thermal-morphological stability. PMID:27045453

  1. Tolerance of non-platinum group metals cathodes proton exchange membrane fuel cells to air contaminants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reshetenko, Tatyana; Serov, Alexey; Artyushkova, Kateryna; Matanovic, Ivana; Sarah Stariha; Atanassov, Plamen

    2016-08-01

    The effects of major airborne contaminants (SO2, NO2 and CO) on the spatial performance of Fe/N/C cathode membrane electrode assemblies were studied using a segmented cell system. The injection of 2-10 ppm SO2 in air stream did not cause any performance decrease and redistribution of local currents due to the lack of stably adsorbed SO2 molecules on Fe-Nx sites, as confirmed by density functional theory (DFT) calculations. The introduction of 5-20 ppm of CO into the air stream also did not affect fuel cell performance. The exposure of Fe/N/C cathodes to 2 and 10 ppm NO2 resulted in performance losses of 30 and 70-75 mV, respectively. DFT results showed that the adsorption energies of NO2 and NO were greater than that of O2, which accounted for the observed voltage decrease and slight current redistribution. The cell performance partially recovered when the NO2 injection was stopped. The long-term operation of the fuel cells resulted in cell performance degradation. XPS analyses of Fe/N/C electrodes revealed that the performance decrease was due to catalyst degradation and ionomer oxidation. The latter was accelerated in the presence of air contaminants. The details of the spatial performance and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy results are presented and discussed.

  2. Tolerance of non-platinum group metals cathodes proton exchange membrane fuel cells to air contaminants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reshetenko, Tatyana; Serov, Alexey; Artyushkova, Kateryna; Matanovic, Ivana; Sarah Stariha; Atanassov, Plamen

    2016-08-01

    The effects of major airborne contaminants (SO2, NO2 and CO) on the spatial performance of Fe/N/C cathode membrane electrode assemblies were studied using a segmented cell system. The injection of 2-10 ppm SO2 in air stream did not cause any performance decrease and redistribution of local currents due to the lack of stably adsorbed SO2 molecules on Fe-Nx sites, as confirmed by density functional theory (DFT) calculations. The introduction of 5-20 ppm of CO into the air stream also did not affect fuel cell performance. The exposure of Fe/N/C cathodes to 2 and 10 ppm NO2 resulted in performance losses of 30 and 70-75 mV, respectively. DFT results showed that the adsorption energies of NO2 and NO were greater than that of O2, which accounted for the observed voltage decrease and slight current redistribution. The cell performance partially recovered when the NO2 injection was stopped. The long-term operation of the fuel cells resulted in cell performance degradation. XPS analyses of Fe/N/C electrodes revealed that the performance decrease was due to catalyst degradation and ionomer oxidation. The latter was accelerated in the presence of air contaminants. The details of the spatial performance and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy results are presented and discussed.

  3. Enhanced oxygen reduction activity and solid oxide fuel cell performance with a nanoparticles-loaded cathode.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaomin; Liu, Li; Zhao, Zhe; Tu, Baofeng; Ou, Dingrong; Cui, Daan; Wei, Xuming; Chen, Xiaobo; Cheng, Mojie

    2015-03-11

    Reluctant oxygen-reduction-reaction (ORR) activity has been a long-standing challenge limiting cell performance for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) in both centralized and distributed power applications. We report here that this challenge has been tackled with coloading of (La,Sr)MnO3 (LSM) and Y2O3 stabilized zirconia (YSZ) nanoparticles within a porous YSZ framework. This design dramatically improves ORR activity, enhances fuel cell output (200-300% power improvement), and enables superior stability (no observed degradation within 500 h of operation) from 600 to 800 °C. The improved performance is attributed to the intimate contacts between nanoparticulate YSZ and LSM particles in the three-phase boundaries in the cathode.

  4. Carbon-supported Pt nanowire as novel cathode catalysts for proton exchange membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Bing; Yan, Zeyu; Higgins, Drew C.; Yang, Daijun; Chen, Zhongwei; Ma, Jianxin

    2014-09-01

    Carbon-supported platinum nanowires (PtNW/C) are successfully synthesized by a simple and inexpensive template-free methodology and demonstrated as novel, suitable cathode electrode materials for proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) applications. The synthesis conditions, such as the amount of reducing agent and reaction time, were investigated to investigate the effect on the nanostructures and activities of the PtNW/C catalysts. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy (TEM) results show that the formic acid facilitated reduction is capable of producing uniformly distributed 1-dimensional PtNW with an average cross-sectional diameter of 4.0 ± 0.2 nm and length of 20-40 nm. Investigation of the electrocatalytic activity by half-cell electrochemical testing reveals that PtNW/C catalyst demonstrates significant oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity, superior to that of commercially available Pt/C. Using a loading of 0.4 mgPt cm-2 PtNW/C as the cathode catalyst, a maximum power density of 748.8 mW cm-2 in a 50 cm2 single cell of commercial Pt/C. In addition, accelerated degradation testing (ADT) showed that the PtNW/C catalyst exhibits better durability than commercial Pt/C, rendering PtNW/C as a promising replacement to conventional Pt/C as cathode electrocatalysts for PEMFCs applications.

  5. Electronic modification of Pt via Ti and Se as tolerant cathodes in air-breathing methanol microfluidic fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Ma, Jiwei; Habrioux, Aurélien; Morais, Cláudia; Alonso-Vante, Nicolas

    2014-07-21

    We reported herein on the use of tolerant cathode catalysts such as carbon supported Pt(x)Ti(y) and/or Pt(x)Se(y) nanomaterials in an air-breathing methanol microfluidic fuel cell. In order to show the improvement of mixed-reactant fuel cell (MRFC) performances obtained with the developed tolerant catalysts, a classical Pt/C nanomaterial was used for comparison. Using 5 M methanol concentration in a situation where the fuel crossover is 100% (MRFC-mixed reactant fuel cell application), the maximum power density of the fuel cell with a Pt/C cathodic catalyst decreased by 80% in comparison with what is observed in the laminar flow fuel cell (LFFC) configuration. With Pt(x)Ti(y)/C and Pt(x)Se(y)/C cathode nanomaterials, the performance loss was only 55% and 20%, respectively. The evaluation of the tolerant cathode catalysts in an air-breathing microfluidic fuel cell suggests the development of a novel nanometric system that will not be size restricted. These interesting results are the consequence of the high methanol tolerance of these advanced electrocatalysts via surface electronic modification of Pt. Herein we used X-ray photoelectron and in situ FTIR spectroscopies to investigate the origin of the high methanol tolerance on modified Pt catalysts.

  6. Chromium poisoning in (La,Sr)MnO3 cathode: Three-dimensional simulation of a solid oxide fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyoshi, Kota; Iwai, Hiroshi; Kishimoto, Masashi; Saito, Motohiro; Yoshida, Hideo

    2016-09-01

    A three-dimensional numerical model of a single solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) considering chromium poisoning on the cathode side has been developed to investigate the evolution of the SOFC performance over long-term operation. The degradation model applied in the simulation describes the loss of the cathode electrochemical activity as a decrease in the active triple-phase boundary (TPB) length. The calculations are conducted for two types of cell: lanthanum strontium manganite (LSM)/yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ)/Ni-YSZ and LSM-YSZ/YSZ/Ni-YSZ. Their electrode microstructures are acquired by imaging with a focused ion beam scanning-electron microscope (FIB-SEM). The simulation results qualitatively reproduce the trends of chromium poisoning reported in the literature. It has been revealed that the performance degradation by chromium is primarily due to an increase in the cathode activation overpotential. In addition, in the LSM-YSZ composite cathode, TPBs in the vicinity of the cathode-electrolyte interface preferentially deteriorate, shifting the active reaction site towards the cathode surface. This also results in an increase in the cathode ohmic loss associated with oxide ion conduction through the YSZ phase. The effects of the cell temperature, the partial pressure of steam at the chromium source, the cathode microstructure, and the cathode thickness on chromium poisoning are also discussed.

  7. Graphite fiber brush anodes for increased power production in air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Logan, Bruce; Cheng, Shaoan; Watson, Valerie; Estadt, Garett

    2007-05-01

    To efficiently generate electricity using bacteria in microbial fuel cells (MFCs), highly conductive noncorrosive materials are needed that have a high specific surface area (surface area per volume) and an open structure to avoid biofouling. Graphite brush anodes, consisting of graphite fibers wound around a conductive, but noncorrosive metal core, were examined for power production in cube (C-MFC) and bottle (B-MFC) air-cathode MFCs. Power production in C-MFCs containing brush electrodes at 9600 m2/m3 reactor volume reached a maximum power density of 2400 mW/m2 (normalized to the cathode projected surface area), or 73 W/m3 based on liquid volume, with a maximum Coulombic efficiency (CE) of 60%. This power density, normalized by cathode projected area, is the highest value yet achieved by an air-cathode system. The increased power resulted from a reduction in internal resistance from 31 to 8 Q. Brush electrodes (4200 m2/m3) were also tested in B-MFCs, consisting of a laboratory media bottle modified to have a single side arm with a cathode clamped to its end. B-MFCs inoculated with wastewater produced up to 1430 mW/m2 (2.3 W/m3, CE = 23%) with brush electrodes, versus 600 mW/m2 with a plain carbon paper electrode. These findings show that brush anodes that have high surface areas and a porous structure can produce high power densities, and therefore have qualities that make them ideal for scaling up MFC systems.

  8. Membrane-less cloth cathode assembly (CCA) for scalable microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Li; Zhou, Shungui; Wang, Yueqiang; Liu, Chengshuai; Geng, Shu

    2009-08-15

    One of the main challenges for scaling up microbial fuel cell (MFC) technologies is developing low-cost cathode architectures that can generate high power output. This study developed a simple method to convert non-conductive material (canvas cloth) into an electrically conductive and catalytically active cloth cathode assembly (CCA) in one step. The membrane-less CCA was simply constructed by coating the cloth with conductive paint (nickel-based or graphite-based) and non-precious metal catalyst (MnO(2)). Under the fed-batch mode, the tubular air-chamber MFCs equipped with Ni-CCA and graphite-CCA generated the maximum power densities of 86.03 and 24.67 mW m(-2) (normalized to the projected cathode surface area), or 9.87 and 2.83 W m(-3) (normalized to the reactor liquid volume), respectively. The higher power output of Ni-CCA-MFC was associated with the lower volume resistivity of Ni-CCA (1.35 x 10(-2)Omega cm) than that of graphite-CCA (225 x 10(-2)Omega cm). At an external resistance of 100 Omega, Ni-CCA-MFC and graphite-CCA-MFC removed approximately 95% COD in brewery wastewater within 13 and 18d, and achieved coulombic efficiencies of 30.2% and 19.5%, respectively. The accumulated net water loss through the cloth by electro-osmotic drag exhibited a linear correlation (R(2)=0.999) with produced coulombs. With a comparable power production, such CCAs only cost less than 5% of the previously reported membrane cathode assembly. The new cathode configuration here is a mechanically durable, economical system for MFC scalability. PMID:19556120

  9. Microbial community structures differentiated in a single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cell fueled with rice straw hydrolysate

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The microbial fuel cell represents a novel technology to simultaneously generate electric power and treat wastewater. Both pure organic matter and real wastewater can be used as fuel to generate electric power and the substrate type can influence the microbial community structure. In the present study, rice straw, an important feedstock source in the world, was used as fuel after pretreatment with diluted acid method for a microbial fuel cell to obtain electric power. Moreover, the microbial community structures of anodic and cathodic biofilm and planktonic culturewere analyzed and compared to reveal the effect of niche on microbial community structure. Results The microbial fuel cell produced a maximum power density of 137.6 ± 15.5 mW/m2 at a COD concentration of 400 mg/L, which was further increased to 293.33 ± 7.89 mW/m2 through adjusting the electrolyte conductivity from 5.6 mS/cm to 17 mS/cm. Microbial community analysis showed reduction of the microbial diversities of the anodic biofilm and planktonic culture, whereas diversity of the cathodic biofilm was increased. Planktonic microbial communities were clustered closer to the anodic microbial communities compared to the cathodic biofilm. The differentiation in microbial community structure of the samples was caused by minor portion of the genus. The three samples shared the same predominant phylum of Proteobacteria. The abundance of exoelectrogenic genus was increased with Desulfobulbus as the shared most abundant genus; while the most abundant exoelectrogenic genus of Clostridium in the inoculum was reduced. Sulfate reducing bacteria accounted for large relative abundance in all the samples, whereas the relative abundance varied in different samples. Conclusion The results demonstrated that rice straw hydrolysate can be used as fuel for microbial fuel cells; microbial community structure differentiated depending on niches after microbial fuel cell operation; exoelectrogens were

  10. Bifunctional silver nanoparticle cathode in microbial fuel cells for microbial growth inhibition with comparable oxygen reduction reaction activity.

    PubMed

    An, Junyeong; Jeon, Hongrae; Lee, Jaeyoung; Chang, In Seop

    2011-06-15

    Organic contamination of water bodies in which benthic microbial fuel cells (benthic MFCs) are installed, and organic crossover from the anode to the cathode of membraneless MFCs, is a factor causing oxygen depletion and substrate loss in the cathode due to the growth of heterotrophic aerobic bacteria. This study examines the possible use of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) as a cathodic catalyst for MFCs suffering from organic contamination and oxygen depletion. Four treated cathodes (AgNPs-coated, Pt/C-coated, Pt/C+AgNPs-coated, and plain graphite cathodes) were prepared and tested under high levels of organics loading. During operation (fed with 50 mM acetate), the AgNPs-coated system showed the highest DO concentration (0.8 mg/L) in the cathode area as well as the highest current (ranging from 0.04 to 0.12 mA). Based on these results, we concluded that (1) the growth of oxygen-consuming heterotrophic microbes could be inhibited by AgNPs, (2) the function of AgNPs as a bacterial growth inhibitor resulted in a greater increase of DO concentration in the cathode than the other tested cathode systems, (3) AgNPs could be applied as a cathode catalyst for oxygen reduction, and as a result (4) the MFC with the AgNPs-coated cathode led to the highest current generation among the tested MFCs. PMID:21585217

  11. Immobilization of a Metal-Nitrogen-Carbon Catalyst on Activated Carbon with Enhanced Cathode Performance in Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wulin; Logan, Bruce E

    2016-08-23

    Applications of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are limited in part by low power densities mainly due to cathode performance. Successful immobilization of an Fe-N-C co-catalyst on activated carbon (Fe-N-C/AC) improved the oxygen reduction reaction to nearly a four-electron transfer, compared to a twoelectron transfer achieved using AC. With acetate as the fuel, the maximum power density was 4.7±0.2 W m(-2) , which is higher than any previous report for an air-cathode MFC. With domestic wastewater as a fuel, MFCs with the Fe-N-C/AC cathode produced up to 0.8±0.03 W m(-2) , which was twice that obtained with a Pt-catalyzed cathode. The use of this Fe-N-C/AC catalyst can therefore substantially increase power production, and enable broader applications of MFCs for renewable electricity generation using waste materials.

  12. MWCNT-supported phthalocyanine cobalt as air-breathing cathodic catalyst in glucose/O2 fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elouarzaki, Kamal; Haddad, Raoudha; Holzinger, Michael; Le Goff, Alan; Thery, Jessica; Cosnier, Serge

    2014-06-01

    Simple and highly efficient glucose fuel cells using abiotic catalysts and different ion exchange membranes were designed. The glucose fuel cells are based on a multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWCNT)-supported cobalt phthalocyanine (CoPc) cathode and a carbon black/platinum (C/Pt) anode. The electrocatalytic activity of the MWCNT/CoPc electrode for oxygen reduction was investigated by cyclic and linear sweep voltammetry. The electrochemical experiments show that CoPc exhibits promising catalytic properties for oxygen reduction due to its high overpotential and efficiency at reduced metal load. The MWCNT/CoPc electrodes were applied to the oxygen reduction reaction as air-breathing cathode in a single-chambered glucose fuel cell. This cathode was associated with a C/Pt anode in fuel cell configurations using either an anion (Nafion®) or a cation (Tokuyama) exchange membrane. The best fuel cell configuration delivered a maximum power density of 2.3 mW cm-2 and a cell voltage of 0.8 V in 0.5 M KOH solution containing 0.5 M glucose using the Tokuyama membrane at ambient conditions. Beside the highest power density per cathodic catalyst mass (383 W g-1), these glucose fuel cells exhibit a high operational stability, delivering 0.3 mW cm-2 after 50 days.

  13. Rational design of novel cathode materials in solid oxide fuel cells using first-principles simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, YongMan; Lin, M. C.; Liu, Meilin

    The search for clean and renewable sources of energy represents one of the most vital challenges facing us today. Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) are among the most promising technologies for a clean and secure energy future due to their high energy efficiency and excellent fuel flexibility (e.g., direct utilization of hydrocarbons or renewable fuels). To make SOFCs economically competitive, however, development of new materials for low-temperature operation is essential. Here we report our results on a computational study to achieve rational design of SOFC cathodes with fast oxygen reduction kinetics and rapid ionic transport. Results suggest that surface catalytic properties are strongly correlated with the bulk transport properties in several material systems with the formula of La 0.5Sr 0.5BO 2.75 (where B = Cr, Mn, Fe, or Co). The predictions seem to agree qualitatively with available experimental results on these materials. This computational screening technique may guide us to search for high-efficiency cathode materials for a new generation of SOFCs.

  14. Development of improved cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, H.U.

    1991-03-01

    The University of Missouri-Rolla conducted a 17 month research program focused on the development and evaluation of improved cathode materials for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC). The objectives of this program were: (1) the development of cathode materials of improved stability in reducing environments; and (2) the development of cathode materials with improved electrical conductivity. The program was successful in identifying some potential candidate materials: Air sinterable (La,Ca)(Cr,Co)O{sub 3} compositions were developed and found to be more stable than La{sub .8}Sr{sub .2}MnO{sub 3} towards reduction. Their conductivity at 1000{degrees}C ranged between 30 to 60 S/cm. Compositions within the (Y,Ca)(Cr,Co,Mn)O{sub 3} system were developed and found to have higher electrical conductivity than La{sub .8}Sr{sub .2}MnO{sub 3} and preliminary results suggest that their stability towards reduction is superior.

  15. Olive mill wastewater treatment in single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Bermek, Hakan; Catal, Tunc; Akan, S Süha; Ulutaş, Mehmet Sefa; Kumru, Mert; Özgüven, Mine; Liu, Hong; Özçelik, Beraat; Akarsubaşı, Alper Tunga

    2014-04-01

    Olive mill wastewaters create significant environmental issues in olive-processing countries. One of the most hazardous groups of pollutants in these wastewaters is phenolic compounds. Here, olive mill wastewater was used as substrate and treated in single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cells. Olive mill wastewater yielded a maximum voltage of 381 mV on an external resistance of 1 kΩ. Notable decreases in the contents of 3,4-dihydroxybenzoic acid, tyrosol, gallic acid and p-coumaric acid were detected. Chemical oxygen demand removal rates were 65 % while removal of total phenolics by the process was lower (49 %). Microbial community analysis during the olive mill wastewater treating MFC has shown that both exoelectrogenic and phenol-degrading microorganisms have been enriched during the operation. Brevundimonas-, Sphingomonas- and Novosphingobium-related phylotypes were enriched on the anode biofilm, while Alphaproteobacteria and Bacteriodetes dominated the cathode biofilm. As one of the novel studies, it has been demonstrated that recalcitrant olive mill wastewaters could be treated and utilized for power generation in microbial fuel cells.

  16. Bismuth doped lanthanum ferrite perovskites as novel cathodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Mei; Wang, Yao; Wang, Yunlong; Chen, Fanglin; Xia, Changrong

    2014-07-23

    Bismuth is doped to lanthanum strontium ferrite to produce ferrite-based perovskites with a composition of La(0.8-x)Bi(x)Sr0.2FeO(3-δ) (0 ≤ x ≤ 0.8) as novel cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells. The perovskite properties including oxygen nonstoichiometry coefficient (δ), average valence of Fe, sinterability, thermal expansion coefficient, electrical conductivity (σ), oxygen chemical surface exchange coefficient (K(chem)), and chemical diffusion coefficient (D(chem)) are explored as a function of bismuth content. While σ decreases with x due to the reduced Fe(4+) content, D(chem) and K(chem) increase since the oxygen vacancy concentration is increased by Bi doping. Consequently, the electrochemical performance is substantially improved and the interfacial polarization resistance is reduced from 1.0 to 0.10 Ω cm(2) at 700 °C with Bi doping. The perovskite with x = 0.4 is suggested as the most promising composition as solid oxide fuel cell cathode material since it has demonstrated high electrical conductivity and low interfacial polarization resistance.

  17. Modeling of thermal expansion coefficient of perovskite oxide for solid oxide fuel cell cathode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heydari, F.; Maghsoudipour, A.; Alizadeh, M.; Khakpour, Z.; Javaheri, M.

    2015-09-01

    Artificial intelligence models have the capacity to eliminate the need for expensive experimental investigation in various areas of manufacturing processes, including the material science. This study investigates the applicability of adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS) approach for modeling the performance parameters of thermal expansion coefficient (TEC) of perovskite oxide for solid oxide fuel cell cathode. Oxides (Ln = La, Nd, Sm and M = Fe, Ni, Mn) have been prepared and characterized to study the influence of the different cations on TEC. Experimental results have shown TEC decreases favorably with substitution of Nd3+ and Mn3+ ions in the lattice. Structural parameters of compounds have been determined by X-ray diffraction, and field emission scanning electron microscopy has been used for the morphological study. Comparison results indicated that the ANFIS technique could be employed successfully in modeling thermal expansion coefficient of perovskite oxide for solid oxide fuel cell cathode, and considerable savings in terms of cost and time could be obtained by using ANFIS technique.

  18. Tailored porosities of the cathode layer for improved polymer electrolyte fuel cell performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zlotorowicz, A.; Jayasayee, K.; Dahl, P. I.; Thomassen, M. S.; Kjelstrup, S.

    2015-08-01

    We show experimentally for the first time that the introduction of macro-pores in the nanoporous catalyst layer of a polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell can improve its performance. We have achieved a Pt utilization of about 0.23 mg W-1 at 0.6 V which is twice the value of the DOE target for 2020, and three times (0.60 mg W-1) smaller than the value of a fully nanoporous reference layer at a catalyst loading of 0.11 mg cm-2. In this work, monodispersed polystyrene particles with diameters of 0.5 and 1 μm were used as pore formers. Cathode catalyst layers with macroporous volume fractions between 0 and 0.58 were investigated. Maximum performance was observed for fuel cells with a macroporous volume fraction of about 0.52 for a 1 μm thick catalyst layer. The results, which were obtained for the cathode layer, support earlier theoretical predictions that gas access to and water escape from the catalyst can be facilitated by introduction of macropores in the nanoporous layer.

  19. Manganese dioxide as a cathode catalyst for a direct alcohol or sodium borohydride fuel cell with a flowing alkaline electrolyte

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verma, A.; Jha, A. K.; Basu, S.

    The oxygen reduction reaction at a manganese dioxide cathode in alkaline medium is studied using cyclic voltammetry and by measuring volume of oxygen consumed at the cathode. The performance of the manganese dioxide cathode is also determined in the presence of fuel and an alkali mixture with a standard Pt/Ni anode in a flowing alkaline-electrolyte fuel cell. The fuels tested are methanol, ethanol and sodium borohydride (1 M), while 3 M KOH is used as the electrolyte. The performance of the fuel cell is measured in terms of open-circuit voltage and current-potential characteristics. A single peak in the cyclic voltammogram suggests that a four-electron pathway mechanism prevails during oxygen reduction. This is substantiated by calculating the number of electrons involved per molecule of oxygen that are reacted at the MnO 2 cathode from the oxygen consumption data for different fuels. The results show that the power density of the fuel cell increases with increase in MnO 2 loading to a certain limit but then decreases with further loading. The maximum power density is obtained at 3 mg cm -2 of MnO 2 for each of the three different fuels.

  20. Biofouling inhibition and enhancing performance of microbial fuel cell using silver nano-particles as fungicide and cathode catalyst.

    PubMed

    Noori, Md T; Jain, Sumat C; Ghangrekar, M M; Mukherjee, C K

    2016-11-01

    Morphological analysis of biofouling developed on cathode surface in an air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) was performed. For sustaining power production and enhancing Coulombic efficiency (CE) of MFC, studies were conducted to inhibit cathode biofouling using different loadings of silver nanoparticles (Ag-NPs) with 5% and 10% Ag in carbon black powder. In MFC without using Ag-NPs in cathode (MFC-C), cathode biofouling increased the charge transfer resistance (Rct) from 1710Ω.cm(2) to 2409Ω.cm(2), and reduced CE by 32%; whereas in MFC with 10% Ag in cathode Rct increased by only 5%. Power density of 7.9±0.5W/m(3) in MFC using 5% Ag and 9.8±0.3W/m(3) in MFC using 10% Ag in cathode was 4.6 and 5.7-folds higher than MFC-C. These results suggest that the Ag-NPs effectively inhibit the fungal biofouling on cathode surface of MFCs and enhanced the power recovery and CE by improving cathode kinetics.

  1. Biofouling inhibition and enhancing performance of microbial fuel cell using silver nano-particles as fungicide and cathode catalyst.

    PubMed

    Noori, Md T; Jain, Sumat C; Ghangrekar, M M; Mukherjee, C K

    2016-11-01

    Morphological analysis of biofouling developed on cathode surface in an air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) was performed. For sustaining power production and enhancing Coulombic efficiency (CE) of MFC, studies were conducted to inhibit cathode biofouling using different loadings of silver nanoparticles (Ag-NPs) with 5% and 10% Ag in carbon black powder. In MFC without using Ag-NPs in cathode (MFC-C), cathode biofouling increased the charge transfer resistance (Rct) from 1710Ω.cm(2) to 2409Ω.cm(2), and reduced CE by 32%; whereas in MFC with 10% Ag in cathode Rct increased by only 5%. Power density of 7.9±0.5W/m(3) in MFC using 5% Ag and 9.8±0.3W/m(3) in MFC using 10% Ag in cathode was 4.6 and 5.7-folds higher than MFC-C. These results suggest that the Ag-NPs effectively inhibit the fungal biofouling on cathode surface of MFCs and enhanced the power recovery and CE by improving cathode kinetics. PMID:27567479

  2. Microbial fuel cell using anaerobic respiration as an anodic reaction and biomineralized manganese as a cathodic reactant.

    PubMed

    Rhoads, Allison; Beyenal, Haluk; Lewandowski, Zbigniew

    2005-06-15

    We have operated a microbial fuel cell in which glucose was oxidized by Klebsiella pneumoniae in the anodic compartment, and biomineralized manganese oxides, deposited by Leptothrix discophora, were electrochemically reduced in the cathodic compartment. In the anodic compartment, to facilitate the electron transfer from glucose to the graphite electrode, we added a redox mediator, 2-hydroxy-1,4-naphthoquinone. We did not add any redox mediator to the cathodic compartment because the biomineralized manganese oxides were deposited on the surface of a graphite electrode and were reduced directly by electrons from the electrode. We have demonstrated that biomineralized manganese oxides are superiorto oxygen when used as cathodic reactants in microbial fuel cells. The current density delivered by using biomineralized manganese oxides as the cathodic reactant was almost 2 orders of magnitude higher than that delivered using oxygen. Several fuel cells were operated for 500 h, reaching anodic potentials of -441.5 +/- 31 mVscE and cathodic potentials of +384.5 +/- 64 mVscE. When the electrodes were connected by a 50 Ohms resistor, the fuel cell delivered the peak power density of 126.7 +/- 31.5 mW/m2.

  3. Microbial fuel cell using anaerobic respiration as an anodic reaction and biomineralized manganese as a cathodic reactant.

    PubMed

    Rhoads, Allison; Beyenal, Haluk; Lewandowski, Zbigniew

    2005-06-15

    We have operated a microbial fuel cell in which glucose was oxidized by Klebsiella pneumoniae in the anodic compartment, and biomineralized manganese oxides, deposited by Leptothrix discophora, were electrochemically reduced in the cathodic compartment. In the anodic compartment, to facilitate the electron transfer from glucose to the graphite electrode, we added a redox mediator, 2-hydroxy-1,4-naphthoquinone. We did not add any redox mediator to the cathodic compartment because the biomineralized manganese oxides were deposited on the surface of a graphite electrode and were reduced directly by electrons from the electrode. We have demonstrated that biomineralized manganese oxides are superiorto oxygen when used as cathodic reactants in microbial fuel cells. The current density delivered by using biomineralized manganese oxides as the cathodic reactant was almost 2 orders of magnitude higher than that delivered using oxygen. Several fuel cells were operated for 500 h, reaching anodic potentials of -441.5 +/- 31 mVscE and cathodic potentials of +384.5 +/- 64 mVscE. When the electrodes were connected by a 50 Ohms resistor, the fuel cell delivered the peak power density of 126.7 +/- 31.5 mW/m2. PMID:16047807

  4. Determination of Optimal Parameters for Dual-Layer Cathode of Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell Using Computational Intelligence-Aided Design

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yi; Huang, Weina; Peng, Bei

    2014-01-01

    Because of the demands for sustainable and renewable energy, fuel cells have become increasingly popular, particularly the polymer electrolyte fuel cell (PEFC). Among the various components, the cathode plays a key role in the operation of a PEFC. In this study, a quantitative dual-layer cathode model was proposed for determining the optimal parameters that minimize the over-potential difference and improve the efficiency using a newly developed bat swarm algorithm with a variable population embedded in the computational intelligence-aided design. The simulation results were in agreement with previously reported results, suggesting that the proposed technique has potential applications for automating and optimizing the design of PEFCs. PMID:25490761

  5. Performance and durability of anode-supported flat-tubular solid oxide fuel cells with Ag-infiltrated cathodes.

    PubMed

    Pi, Seuk-Hoon; Lee, Jong-Won; Lee, Seung-Bok; Lim, Tak-Hyoung; Park, Seok-Joo; Park, Chong-Ook; Song, Rak-Hyun

    2014-10-01

    An anode-supported flat-tubular solid oxide fuel cell is an advanced cell design, which offers many advantages including a high volumetric power density, a minimized sealing area and a high resistance to thermal cycling. Infiltration of nano-sized noble metal catalysts into a porous cathode is known to be an effective method to improve cathode performances at reduced temperatures, but the cathode stability is of potential concern. This study addresses the performance and durability of anode-supported flat-tubular solid oxide fuel cells with Ag-infiltrated cathodes. Uniformly dispersed Ag nanoparticles on the cathode are formed via a wet infiltration technique combined with subsequent heat-treatment. Although the Ag infiltration results in improved cell performance, the durability tests indicate that the cell performance degrades over time and that the degradation rate increases with increasing Ag loading in the cathode. The observed performance degradation is mainly attributed to formation of large-scale Ag agglomerates. A strategy based on an inter-dispersed composite of Ag and CeO2 nanoparticles is proposed to mitigate the performance degradation.

  6. Carbon Nanohorn-Derived Graphene Nanotubes as a Platinum-Free Fuel Cell Cathode.

    PubMed

    Unni, Sreekuttan M; Illathvalappil, Rajith; Bhange, Siddheshwar N; Puthenpediakkal, Hasna; Kurungot, Sreekumar

    2015-11-01

    Current low-temperature fuel cell research mainly focuses on the development of efficient nonprecious electrocatalysts for the reduction of dioxygen molecule due to the reasons like exorbitant cost and scarcity of the current state-of-the-art Pt-based catalysts. As a potential alternative to such costly electrocatalysts, we report here the preparation of an efficient graphene nanotube based oxygen reduction electrocatalyst which has been derived from single walled nanohorns, comprising a thin layer of graphene nanotubes and encapsulated iron oxide nanoparticles (FeGNT). FeGNT shows a surface area of 750 m(2)/g, which is the highest ever reported among the metal encapsulated nanotubes. Moreover, the graphene protected iron oxide nanoparticles assist the system to attain efficient distribution of Fe-Nx and quaternary nitrogen based active reaction centers, which provides better activity and stability toward the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in acidic as well as alkaline conditions. Single cell performance of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell by using FeGNT as the cathode catalyst delivered a maximum power density of 200 mW cm(-2) with Nafion as the proton exchange membrane at 60 °C. The facile synthesis strategy with iron oxide encapsulated graphitic carbon morphology opens up a new horizon of hope toward developing Pt-free fuel cells and metal-air batteries along with its applicability in other energy conversion and storage devices. PMID:26458554

  7. Carbon Nanohorn-Derived Graphene Nanotubes as a Platinum-Free Fuel Cell Cathode.

    PubMed

    Unni, Sreekuttan M; Illathvalappil, Rajith; Bhange, Siddheshwar N; Puthenpediakkal, Hasna; Kurungot, Sreekumar

    2015-11-01

    Current low-temperature fuel cell research mainly focuses on the development of efficient nonprecious electrocatalysts for the reduction of dioxygen molecule due to the reasons like exorbitant cost and scarcity of the current state-of-the-art Pt-based catalysts. As a potential alternative to such costly electrocatalysts, we report here the preparation of an efficient graphene nanotube based oxygen reduction electrocatalyst which has been derived from single walled nanohorns, comprising a thin layer of graphene nanotubes and encapsulated iron oxide nanoparticles (FeGNT). FeGNT shows a surface area of 750 m(2)/g, which is the highest ever reported among the metal encapsulated nanotubes. Moreover, the graphene protected iron oxide nanoparticles assist the system to attain efficient distribution of Fe-Nx and quaternary nitrogen based active reaction centers, which provides better activity and stability toward the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in acidic as well as alkaline conditions. Single cell performance of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell by using FeGNT as the cathode catalyst delivered a maximum power density of 200 mW cm(-2) with Nafion as the proton exchange membrane at 60 °C. The facile synthesis strategy with iron oxide encapsulated graphitic carbon morphology opens up a new horizon of hope toward developing Pt-free fuel cells and metal-air batteries along with its applicability in other energy conversion and storage devices.

  8. Outward electron transfer by Saccharomyces cerevisiae monitored with a bi-cathodic microbial fuel cell-type activity sensor.

    PubMed

    Ducommun, Raphaël; Favre, Marie-France; Carrard, Delphine; Fischer, Fabian

    2010-03-01

    A Janus head-like bi-cathodic microbial fuel cell was constructed to monitor the electron transfer from Saccharomyces cerevisiae to a woven carbon anode. The experiments were conducted during an ethanol cultivation of 170 g/l glucose in the presence and absence of yeast-peptone medium. First, using a basic fuel-cell type activity sensor, it was shown that yeast-peptone medium contains electroactive compounds. For this purpose, 1% solutions of soy peptone and yeast extract were subjected to oxidative conditions, using a microbial fuel cell set-up corresponding to a typical galvanic cell, consisting of culture medium in the anodic half-cell and 0.5 M K(3)Fe(CN)(6) in the cathodic half-cell. Second, using a bi-cathodic microbial fuel cell, it was shown that electrons were transferred from yeast cells to the carbon anode. The participation of electroactive compounds in the electron transport was separated as background current. This result was verified by applying medium-free conditions, where only glucose was fed, confirming that electrons are transferred from yeast cells to the woven carbon anode. Knowledge about the electron transfer through the cell membrane is of importance in amperometric online monitoring of yeast fermentations and for electricity production with microbial fuel cells.

  9. Chlorobenzene Poisoning and Recovery of Platinum-Based Cathodes in Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, Yunfeng; Baturina, Olga; Ramaker, David; Farquhar, Erik; St-Pierre, Jean; Swider-Lyons, Karen

    2015-01-01

    The platinum electrocatalysts found in proton exchange membrane fuel cells are poisoned both reversibly and irreversibly by air pollutants and residual manufacturing contaminants. In this work, the poisoning of a Pt/C PEMFC cathode was probed by a trace of chlorobenzene in the air feed. Chlorobenzene inhibits the oxygen reduction reaction and causes significant cell performance loss. The performance loss is largely restored by neat air operation and potential cycling between 0.08 V and 1.2 V under H2/N2 (anode/cathode). The analysis of emissions, in situ X-ray absorption spectroscopy and electrochemical impedance spectra show the chlorobenzene adsorption/reaction and molecular orientation on Pt surface depend on the electrode potential. At low potentials, chlorobenzene deposits either on top of adsorbed H atoms or on the Pt surface via the benzene ring and is converted to benzene (ca. 0.1 V) or cyclohexane (ca. 0 V) upon Cl removal. At potentials higher than 0.2 V, chlorobenzene binds to Pt via the Cl atom and can be converted to benzene (less than 0.3 V) or desorbed. Cl− is created and remains in the membrane electrode assembly. Cl− binds to the Pt surface much stronger than chlorobenzene, but can slowly be flushed out by liquid water. PMID:26388963

  10. Kinetic modelling of molten carbonate fuel cells: Effects of cathode water and electrode materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arato, E.; Audasso, E.; Barelli, L.; Bosio, B.; Discepoli, G.

    2016-10-01

    Through previous campaigns the authors developed a semi-empirical kinetic model to describe MCFC performance for industrial and laboratory simulation. Although effective in a wide range of operating conditions, the model was validated for specific electrode materials and dry feeding cathode compositions. The new aim is to prove that with appropriate improvements it is possible to apply the model to MCFC provided by different suppliers and to new sets of reactant gases. Specifically, this paper describes the procedures to modify the model to switch among different materials and identify a new parameter taking into account the effects of cathode water vapour. The new equation is integrated as the kinetic core within the SIMFC (SIMulation of Fuel Cells) code, an MCFC 3D model set up by the PERT group of the University of Genova, for reliability test. Validation is performed using data collected through tests carried out at the University of Perugia using single cells. The results are discussed giving examples of the simulated performance with varying operating conditions. The final formulation average percentage error obtained for all the simulated cases with respect to experimental results is maintained around 1%, despite the difference between the basic and the new conditions and facilities.

  11. Compatibility between strontium-doped ferrite cathode and metallic interconnects in solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miguel-Pérez, Verónica; Martínez-Amesti, Ana; Arriortua, María Isabel

    2015-04-01

    One of the most important issues related to the performance of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) is the chromium poisoning of the perovskite-type materials used as cathodes by the gaseous chromium species from metallic interconnects. In this study, powder mixtures of LSF40-Cr2O3 were heated at 800 °C and 1000 °C in air and were subsequently analysed by X-ray powder diffraction. For all the mixtures, the crystallisation of SrCrO4 was observed. In addition, the degradation occurring between three alloys with different compositions, Crofer 22 APU, SS430 and Conicro 4023 W 188, as metallic interconnects and La0.6Sr0.4FeO3 (LSF40) ceramic material as a cathode was studied. The results show significant chromium deposition and the formation of SrCrO4, LaCrO3 and La2O3 that block the active LSF40 electrode surface and degrade the stack (YSZ/SDC/LSF40/Interconnect) performance. LSF40 assembled with SS430 exhibited substantial Cr deposition. The deposition of the Cr species and the reaction with the LSF40 cathode is related to the composition of the oxide scales formed at each metallic interconnect and at the same time is related to the composition of the alloys. The best results obtained were for the half-cell (YSZ/SDC/LSF40) in contact with Conicro 4023 W 188 and Crofer 22 APU after heat treatment in air at 800 °C for 100 h.

  12. Optimisation of air cooled, open-cathode fuel cells: Current of lowest resistance and electro-thermal performance mapping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, Quentin; Ronaszegi, Krisztian; Pei-June, Gan; Curnick, Oliver; Ashton, Sean; Reisch, Tobias; Adcock, Paul; Shearing, Paul R.; Brett, Daniel J. L.

    2015-09-01

    Selecting the ideal operating point for a fuel cell depends on the application and consequent trade-off between efficiency, power density and various operating considerations. A systematic methodology for determining the optimal operating point for fuel cells is lacking; there is also the need for a single-value metric to describe and compare fuel cell performance. This work shows how the 'current of lowest resistance' can be accurately measured using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and used as a useful metric of fuel cell performance. This, along with other measures, is then used to generate an 'electro-thermal performance map' of fuel cell operation. A commercial air-cooled open-cathode fuel cell is used to demonstrate how the approach can be used; in this case leading to the identification of the optimum operating temperature of ∼45 °C.

  13. Binary and ternary nano-catalysts as cathode materials in proton exchange membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trimm, Bryan Dunning

    The need for alternative energy, in order to reduce dependence on petroleum based fuels, has increased in recent years. Public demand is at an all-time high for low emitting or none polluting energy sources, driving the research for cleaner technology. Lithium batteries and fuel cells have the ability to produce this alternative energy with much cleaner standards, while allowing for portability and high energy densities. This work focuses on the performance of nanocatalysts in Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell or PEMFC. A key technical challenge is the sluggish rate for oxygen reduction reaction at the cathode of PEMFC, which requires highly-active and stable catalysts. Our investigation is directed at increasing stability and durability as well as reducing high loading of noble metals in these catalyst materials. Binary and ternary structured nanomaterials, e.g., Pt51V1Co48/C and Pd xCu1-x/C, have been synthesized and tested in a PEMFC, in order to gain a better understanding of their durability and efficiency. In addition to electrochemical characterization, synchrotron x-ray techniques at the Advance Photon Source in Argonne National Lab have also been used for the structural characterization.

  14. Methods for using novel cathode and electrolyte materials for solid oxide fuel cells and ion transport membranes

    DOEpatents

    Jacobson, Allan J.; Wang, Shuangyan; Kim, Gun Tae

    2016-01-12

    Methods using novel cathode, electrolyte and oxygen separation materials operating at intermediate temperatures for use in solid oxide fuel cells and ion transport membranes include oxides with perovskite related structures and an ordered arrangement of A site cations. The materials have significantly faster oxygen kinetics than in corresponding disordered perovskites.

  15. Synthesis and characterization of cobaltite nanotubes for solid-oxide fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Napolitano, F.; Baqué, L.; Troiani, H.; Granada, M.; Serquis, A.

    2009-05-01

    La1-xSrxCo1-yFeyO3-δ oxides are good candidates for solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathodes because these materials present high ionic and electronic conductivity, and compatibility with Cerium Gadolinium Oxide (CGO) electrolytes allowing a lower operation temperature. In this work, we report the synthesis of La0.4Sr0.6Co0.8Fe0.2O3-δ (LSCF) nanotubes prepared by a porous polycarbonate membrane approach, obtaining different microstructures depending on sintering conditions. The structure and morphology of the nanotubes and deposited films were characterized by X-ray diffraction, transmission and scanning microscopy. Finally, we obtained nanostructured films of vertically aligned LSCF tubes deposited over the whole surface of CGO pellets with diameter up to 2.5cm in a direct and single step process.

  16. Artificial Neural Network Modeling of Pt/C Cathode Degradation in PEM Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maleki, Erfan; Maleki, Nasim

    2016-08-01

    Use of computational modeling with a few experiments is considered useful to obtain the best possible result for a final product, without performing expensive and time-consuming experiments. Proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) can produce clean electricity, but still require further study. An oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) takes place at the cathode, and carbon-supported platinum (Pt/C) is commonly used as an electrocatalyst. The harsh conditions during PEMFC operation result in Pt/C degradation. Observation of changes in the Pt/C layer under operating conditions provides a tool to study the lifetime of PEMFCs and overcome durability issues. Recently, artificial neural networks (ANNs) have been used to solve, predict, and optimize a wide range of scientific problems. In this study, several rates of change at the cathode were modeled using ANNs. The backpropagation (BP) algorithm was used to train the network, and experimental data were employed for network training and testing. Two different models are constructed in the present study. First, the potential cycles, temperature, and humidity are used as inputs to predict the resulting Pt dissolution rate of the Pt/C at the cathode as the output parameter of the network. Thereafter, the Pt dissolution rate and Pt ion diffusivity are regarded as inputs to obtain values of the Pt particle radius change rate, Pt mass loss rate, and surface area loss rate as outputs. The networks are finely tuned, and the modeling results agree well with experimental data. The modeled responses of the ANNs are acceptable for this application.

  17. Stabilizing nanostructured solid oxide fuel cell cathode with atomic layer deposition.

    PubMed

    Gong, Yunhui; Palacio, Diego; Song, Xueyan; Patel, Rajankumar L; Liang, Xinhua; Zhao, Xuan; Goodenough, John B; Huang, Kevin

    2013-09-11

    We demonstrate that the highly active but unstable nanostructured intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cell cathode, La0.6Sr0.4CoO3-δ (LSCo), can retain its high oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity with exceptional stability for 4000 h at 700 °C by overcoating its surfaces with a conformal layer of nanoscale ZrO2 films through atomic layer deposition (ALD). The benefits from the presence of the nanoscale ALD-ZrO2 overcoats are remarkable: a factor of 19 and 18 reduction in polarization area-specific resistance and degradation rate over the pristine sample, respectively. The unique multifunctionality of the ALD-derived nanoscaled ZrO2 overcoats, that is, possessing porosity for O2 access to LSCo, conducting both electrons and oxide-ions, confining thermal growth of LSCo nanoparticles, and suppressing surface Sr-segregation is deemed the key enabler for the observed stable and active nanostructured cathode.

  18. A single-chamber microbial fuel cell without an air cathode.

    PubMed

    Nimje, Vanita Roshan; Chen, Chien-Cheng; Chen, Hau-Ren; Chen, Chien-Yen; Tseng, Min-Jen; Cheng, Kai-Chien; Shih, Ruey-Chyuan; Chang, Young-Fo

    2012-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) represent a novel technology for wastewater treatment with electricity production. Electricity generation with simultaneous nitrate reduction in a single-chamber MFC without air cathode was studied, using glucose (1 mM) as the carbon source and nitrate (1 mM) as the final electron acceptor employed by Bacillus subtilis under anaerobic conditions. Increasing current as a function of decreased nitrate concentration and an increase in biomass were observed with a maximum current of 0.4 mA obtained at an external resistance (R(ext)) of 1 KΩ without a platinum catalyst of air cathode. A decreased current with complete nitrate reduction, with further recovery of the current immediately after nitrate addition, indicated the dependence of B. subtilis on nitrate as an electron acceptor to efficiently produce electricity. A power density of 0.0019 mW/cm(2) was achieved at an R(ext) of 220 Ω. Cyclic voltammograms (CV) showed direct electron transfer with the involvement of mediators in the MFC. The low coulombic efficiency (CE) of 11% was mainly attributed to glucose fermentation. These results demonstrated that electricity generation is possible from wastewater containing nitrate, and this represents an alternative technology for the cost-effective and environmentally benign treatment of wastewater.

  19. Activity and stability of pyrolyzed iron ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid as cathode catalyst in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li; Liang, Peng; Zhang, Jian; Huang, Xia

    2011-04-01

    A low-cost and effective iron-chelated catalyst was developed as an electrocatalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). The catalyst was prepared by pyrolyzing carbon mixed iron-chelated ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (PFeEDTA/C) in an argon atmosphere. Cyclic voltammetry measurements showed that PFeEDTA/C had a high catalytic activity for ORR. The MFC with a PFeEDTA/C cathode produced a maximum power density of 1122 mW/m(2), which was close to that with a Pt/C cathode (1166 mW/m(2)). The PFeEDTA/C was stable during an operation period of 31 days. Based on X-ray diffraction and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy measurements, quaternary-N modified with iron might be the active site for the oxygen reduction reaction. The total cost of a PFeEDTA/C catalyst was much lower than that of a Pt catalyst. Thus, PFeEDTA/C can be a good alternative to Pt in MFC practical applications.

  20. Development of carbon free diffusion layer for activated carbon air cathode of microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wulin; Kim, Kyoung-Yeol; Logan, Bruce E

    2015-12-01

    The fabrication of activated carbon air cathodes for larger-scale microbial fuel cells requires a diffusion layer (DL) that is highly resistant to water leakage, oxygen permeable, and made using inexpensive materials. A hydrophobic polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) membrane synthesized using a simple phase inversion process was examined as a low cost ($0.9/m(2)), carbon-free DL that prevented water leakage at high pressure heads compared to a polytetrafluoroethylene/carbon black DL ($11/m(2)). The power density produced with a PVDF (20%, w/v) DL membrane of 1400±7mW/m(2) was similar to that obtained using a wipe DL [cloth coated with poly(dimethylsiloxane)]. Water head tolerance reached 1.9m (∼19kPa) with no mesh supporter, and 2.1m (∼21kPa, maximum testing pressure) with a mesh supporter, compared to 0.2±0.05m for the wipe DL. The elimination of carbon black from the DL greatly simplified the fabrication procedure and further reduced overall cathode costs. PMID:26342345

  1. Catalysts for ultrahigh current density oxygen cathodes for space fuel cell applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tryk, D.; Yeager, E.; Shingler, M.; Aldred, W.; Wang, C.

    1990-01-01

    The objective of this research was to identify promising electrocatalyst/support systems for the oxygen cathode in alkaline fuel cells operating at relatively high temperatures, O2 pressures and current densities. A number of materials were prepared, including Pb-Ru and Pb-Ir pyrochlores, RuO2 and Pt-doped RuO2, and lithiated NiO. Several of these were prepared using techniques that had not been previously used to prepare them. Particularly interesting is the use of the alkaline solution technique to prepare the Pt-doped Pb-Ru pyrochlore in high area form. Well-crystallized Pb(2)Ru(2)O(7-y) was used to fabricate high performance O2 cathodes with relatively good stability in room temperature KOH. This material was also found to be stable over a useful potential range at approximately 140 C in concentrated KOH. Other pyrochlores were found to be either unstable (amorphous samples) or the fabrication of the gas-fed electrodes could not be fully optimized during this project period. Future work may be directed at this problem. High area platinum supported on conductive metal oxide supports produced mixed results: small improvements in O2 reduction performance for Pb(2)Ru(2)O(7-y) but a large improvement for Li-doped NiO at room temperature. Nearly reversible behavior was observed for the O2/OH couple for Li-doped NiO at approximately 200 C.

  2. [Electrode configuration as a factor affecting electricity generation in air-cathode microbial fuel cell].

    PubMed

    You, Shi-Jie; Zhao, Qing-Liang; Jiang, Jun-Qiu

    2006-11-01

    In air-cathode microbial fuel cell (ACMFC), oxygen diffused into the reactor from cathode without PEM can be reduced as electron acceptor via aerobic respiration by facultative microorganisms, resulting in either a decreasing of power generation or electron loss. In this study, ACMFC1 and ACMFC2 with different electrode configuration were compared to examine power density and electron recovery from glucose. The results showed that ACMFC1 generated a maximum power density of 3 070mW/m3 with internal resistance of 302.141 and anode potential of -323mV; while maximum power density of 9 800mW/m3 for ACMFC2 was obtained with internal resistance of 107.79omega and anode potential of -442mV. ACMFC2 could sustain generating electricity for nearly 220 h (ERE of 30.1%), comparing with ACMFC1 of less than 50 h (ERE of 9.78%) under batch operation. Therefore, an improved design for electrode configuration of ACMFC can be performed to generate higher power with low internal resistance, meanwhile, achieve increasing electron recovery simultaneously.

  3. Scalable air cathode microbial fuel cells using glass fiber separators, plastic mesh supporters, and graphite fiber brush anodes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoyuan; Cheng, Shaoan; Liang, Peng; Huang, Xia; Logan, Bruce E

    2011-01-01

    The combined use of brush anodes and glass fiber (GF1) separators, and plastic mesh supporters were used here for the first time to create a scalable microbial fuel cell architecture. Separators prevented short circuiting of closely-spaced electrodes, and cathode supporters were used to avoid water gaps between the separator and cathode that can reduce power production. The maximum power density with a separator and supporter and a single cathode was 75 ± 1 W/m(3). Removing the separator decreased power by 8%. Adding a second cathode increased power to 154 ± 1 W/m(3). Current was increased by connecting two MFCs connected in parallel. These results show that brush anodes, combined with a glass fiber separator and a plastic mesh supporter, produce a useful MFC architecture that is inherently scalable due to good insulation between the electrodes and a compact architecture. PMID:20566288

  4. Scalable air cathode microbial fuel cells using glass fiber separators, plastic mesh supporters, and graphite fiber brush anodes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoyuan; Cheng, Shaoan; Liang, Peng; Huang, Xia; Logan, Bruce E

    2011-01-01

    The combined use of brush anodes and glass fiber (GF1) separators, and plastic mesh supporters were used here for the first time to create a scalable microbial fuel cell architecture. Separators prevented short circuiting of closely-spaced electrodes, and cathode supporters were used to avoid water gaps between the separator and cathode that can reduce power production. The maximum power density with a separator and supporter and a single cathode was 75 ± 1 W/m(3). Removing the separator decreased power by 8%. Adding a second cathode increased power to 154 ± 1 W/m(3). Current was increased by connecting two MFCs connected in parallel. These results show that brush anodes, combined with a glass fiber separator and a plastic mesh supporter, produce a useful MFC architecture that is inherently scalable due to good insulation between the electrodes and a compact architecture.

  5. One-step fabrication of membraneless microbial fuel cell cathode by electropolymerization of polypyrrole onto stainless steel mesh.

    PubMed

    Feng, Chunhua; Wan, Qunyi; Lv, Zhisheng; Yue, Xianjun; Chen, Yanfeng; Wei, Chaohai

    2011-05-15

    A unique one-step method for fabrication of a membraneless microbial fuel cell (MFC) cathode was developed by coating a conductive polymer onto stainless steel mesh. The resulting polypyrrole/anthraquinone-2-sulfonate (PPy/AQS) film was synthesized via electropolymerization using AQS as the dopants. The scanning electron microscopy results indicated that the PPy/AQS film was uniformly formed on the metal mesh electrode without cracks on its surface and featuring a globular structure. Being equipped with such a cathode that was able to catalyze oxygen reduction and prevent water leakage, the membraneless MFC allowed power generation over 250 h and exhibited a maximum power density of 575 mW m(-2). Increasing film thickness seemed to result in a reduction in power performance due to the increased ohmic resistance of the cathode material and the enhanced difficulty for oxygen diffusion inside the cathode.

  6. Inhibition of microbial growth on air cathodes of single chamber microbial fuel cells by incorporating enrofloxacin into the catalyst layer.

    PubMed

    Liu, Weifeng; Cheng, Shaoan; Sun, Dan; Huang, Haobin; Chen, Jie; Cen, Kefa

    2015-10-15

    The inevitable growth of aerobic bacteria on the surface of air cathodes is an important factor reducing the performance stability of air cathode single-chamber membrane-free microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Thus searching for effective methods to inhibit the cathodic microbial growth is critical for the practical application of MFCs. In this study, enrofloxacin (ENR), a broad spectrum fluoroquinolone antibiotic, was incorporated into the catalyst layer of activated carbon air cathodes (ACACs) to inhibit the cathodic microbial growth. The biomass content on ACACs was substantially reduced by 60.2% with ENR treatment after 91 days of MFCs operation. As a result of the inhibited microbial growth, the oxygen reduction catalytic performance of the ENR treated ACACs was much stable compared to the fast performance decline of the untreated control. Consequently, a quite stable electricity production was obtained for the MFCs with the ENR treated ACACs, in contrast with a 22.5% decrease in maximum power density of the MFCs with the untreated cathode. ENR treatment of ACACs showed minimal effects on the anode performance. These results indicate that incorporating antibiotics into ACACs should be a simple and effective strategy to inhibit the microbial growth and improve the long-term stability of the performance of air cathode and the electricity production of MFCs.

  7. Electricity generation and bivalent copper reduction as a function of operation time and cathode electrode material in microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Dan; Huang, Liping; Quan, Xie; Li Puma, Gianluca

    2016-03-01

    The performance of carbon rod (CR), titanium sheet (TS), stainless steel woven mesh (SSM) and copper sheet (CS) cathode materials are investigated in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) for simultaneous electricity generation and Cu(II) reduction, in multiple batch cycle operations. After 12 cycles, the MFC with CR exhibits 55% reduction in the maximum power density and 76% increase in Cu(II) removal. In contrast, the TS and SSM cathodes at cycle 12 show maximum power densities of 1.7 (TS) and 3.4 (SSM) times, and Cu(II) removal of 1.2 (TS) and 1.3 (SSM) times higher than those observed during the first cycle. Diffusional resistance in the TS and SSM cathodes is found to appreciably decrease over time due to the copper deposition. In contrast to CR, TS and SSM, the cathode made with CS is heavily corroded in the first cycle, exhibiting significant reduction in both the maximum power density and Cu(II) removal at cycle 2, after which the performance stabilizes. These results demonstrate that the initial deposition of copper on the cathodes of MFCs is crucial for efficient and continuous Cu(II) reduction and electricity generation over prolonged time. This effect is closely associated with the nature of the cathode material. Among the materials examined, the SSM is the most effective and inexpensive cathode for practical use in MFCs.

  8. Passive cathodic water/air management device for micro-direct methanol fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Hsien-Chih; Chen, Po-Hon; Chen, Hung-Wen; Chieng, Ching-Chang; Yeh, Tsung-Kuang; Pan, Chin; Tseng, Fan-Gang

    A high efficient passive water/air management device (WAMD) is proposed and successfully demonstrated in this paper. The apparatus consists of cornered micro-channels and air-breathing windows with hydrophobicity arrangement to regulate liquids and gases to flow on their predetermined pathways. A high performance water/air separation with water removal rate of about 5.1 μl s -1 cm -2 is demonstrated. The performance of the proposed WAMD is sufficient to manage a cathode-generated water flux of 0.26 μl s -1 cm -2 in the micro-direct methanol fuel cells (μDMFCs) which are operated at 100 mW cm -2 or 400 mA cm -2. Furthermore, the condensed vapors can also be collected and recirculated with the existing micro-channels which act as a passive water recycling system for μDMFCs. The durability testing shows that the fuel cells equipped with WAMD exhibit improved stability and higher current density.

  9. Effect of flow pulsation on mass transport in a cathode channel of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Hun Sik; Kim, Yun Ho; Kim, Seo Young; Hyun, Jae Min

    2012-09-01

    An experimental and theoretical study on the cathode flow pulsation in a polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell is performed. A 10-cell PEM fuel cell stack with open-air cathode channels is employed to investigate the effects of the cathode flow pulsation on the overall performance. The polarization and corresponding power curves obtained show that both the limiting current density and the maximum power density are substantially enhanced when the pulsating component is added to the cathode mainstream flow. The flow pulsation at Re = 77 provides the maximum increment of 40% and 35.5% in the limiting current density and in the maximum power density, respectively. The enhancement of the overall performance is more pronounced at low Reynolds numbers. Also, the theoretical mass transport analysis in the pulsating cathode flow channel is carried out to verify the present experimental results. The momentum and species conservation equations are analytically solved, and the effective time-averaged dispersion coefficient is defined to account for the enhanced mass transport by the flow pulsation. Comprehensive analytical solutions show that the effect of the relevant parameters is in well accordance with the experimental results.

  10. Performance Characteristics of a PEM Fuel Cell with Parallel Flow Channels at Different Cathode Relative Humidity Levels.

    PubMed

    Lee, Pil Hyong; Hwang, Sang Soon

    2009-01-01

    In fuel cells flow configuration and operating conditions such as cell temperature, humidity at each electrode and stoichiometric number are very crucial for improving performance. Too many flow channels could enhance the performance but result in high parasite loss. Therefore a trade-off between pressure drop and efficiency of a fuel cell should be considered for optimum design. This work focused on numerical simulation of the effects of operating conditions, especially cathode humidity, with simple micro parallel flow channels. It is known that the humidity at the cathode flow channel becomes very important for enhancing the ion conductivity of polymer membrane because fully humidified condition was normally set at anode. To investigate the effect of humidity on the performance of a fuel cell, in this study humidification was set to 100% at the anode flow channel and was changed by 0-100% at the cathode flow channel. Results showed that the maximum power density could be obtained under 60% humidified condition at the cathode where oxygen concentration was moderately high while maintaining high ion conductivity at a membrane.

  11. Stability of cobalt oxide infiltrated LSM/TZ8Y cathode for solid oxide fuel cells at intermediate temperatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Xuan

    The performance of a La0.4Sr0.6MnO3/8wt% Y2O3-stabilized ZrO2 (LSM/YZ8Y) composite cathode was observed to increase by post-firing doping (infiltration) of cobalt nitrate into the pores of an LSM/TZ8Y cathode in solid oxide fuel cells. Results demonstrated that cobalt nitrate decomposed into nano-sized spinel structures of Co3O4 of sizes ranging from 40 to 60 nm. The stability of a Co3O4 infiltrated LSM/TZ8Y cathode was studied under both oxidizing and reducing environments at 700°C. This dissertation studied the coarsening effects of Co3O 4 nano-particles in the pores of LSM/TZ8Y cathodes and its chemical interaction between LSM and TZ8Y during 1000 hours of exposure to air. A scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was used to observe the microstructure. Polarization curves and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy were used to electrochemically characterize LSM/TZ8Y half cells (oxygen pump) with applied cathodic currents before and after Co3O4 infiltration. The chemical interactions of Co3O4 and an LSM/TZ8Y cathode were studied under the effects of a reducing atmosphere at various currents applied to the cathode, e.g., 500mA/cm2, 1500mA/cm2 and 3A/cm 2. The corresponding partial pressure of oxygen (P O2) at the cathode was observed and calculated from a built-in oxygen sensor which monitored applied cathodic currents. Chemical reactions were characterized through the use scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM), energy dispersive spectrometry (EDS), and X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis.

  12. OPTIMIZATION OF THE CATHODE LONG-TERM STABILITY IN MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELLS: EXPERIMENTAL STUDY AND MATHEMATICAL MODELING

    SciTech Connect

    Dr. Ralph E. White; Dr. Branko N. Popov

    2002-04-01

    The dissolution of NiO cathodes during cell operation is a limiting factor to the successful commercialization of molten carbonate fuel cells (MCFCs). Lithium cobalt oxide coating onto the porous nickel electrode has been adopted to modify the conventional MCFC cathode which is believed to increase the stability of the cathodes in the carbonate melt. The material used for surface modification should possess thermodynamic stability in the molten carbonate and also should be electro catalytically active for MCFC reactions. Two approaches have been adopted to get a stable cathode material. First approach is the use of LiNi{sub 0.8}Co{sub 0.2}O{sub 2}, a commercially available lithium battery cathode material and the second is the use of tape cast electrodes prepared from cobalt coated nickel powders. The morphology and the structure of LiNi{sub 0.8}Co{sub 0.2}O{sub 2} and tape cast Co coated nickel powder electrodes were studied using scanning electron microscopy and X-Ray diffraction studies respectively. The electrochemical performance of the two materials was investigated by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and polarization studies. A three phase homogeneous model was developed to simulate the performance of the molten carbonate fuel cell cathode. The homogeneous model is based on volume averaging of different variables in the three phases over a small volume element. The model gives a good fit to the experimental data. The model has been used to analyze MCFC cathode performance under a wide range of operating conditions.

  13. [Electricity generation using the short-arm air-cathode microbial fuel cell].

    PubMed

    Guo, Kun; Li, Ding-jie; Li, Hao-ran; Du, Zhu-wei

    2009-10-15

    The short-arm air-cathode microbial fuel cell (ACMFC) was constructed using a cramp to fix the proton exchange membrane (PEM) and carbon paper with 0.5 mg/cm2 onto the short-arm side of the anode chamber. Exoelectrogens on the surface of graphite rod were enriched by a sludge microbial fuel cell from the anaerobic digestion sludge. And the cyclic voltammetry result showed these microbes had electrochemical activities. Using the graphite rod covered by exoelectrogens as the anode and sodium acetate as the substrate, the short-arm ACMFC showed a maximal power density (Pm) of 738 mW/m2, internal resistance (Ri) of 280 omega and open circuit voltage (OCV) of 741 mV. Continuous sparging the anode chamber with nitrogen or removal of the proton exchange membrane enhance the Pm of the cell to 745 mW/m2 and 759 mW/m2 respectively. When both of the two measures were used together, the Pm reached up to 922 mW/m2. Under these three conditions the Ri of the cell was kept around 280 omega. When the substrate concentration was 12.62-100.96 mg/L and external resistance was 510 omega, the maximal voltage of the cell and the substrate concentration showed an obvious linear relation (R2 = 0.99). But when the concentration was above 100.96 mg/L, the maximal voltage stably kept around 302mV(the external resistance was 510 omega). However, the Coulombic efficiency of the short-arm ACMFC gradually increased with the increase of the substrate concentration, from 31.83% to 45.03%.

  14. Microwave decoration of Pt nanoparticles on entangled 3D carbon nanotube architectures as PEM fuel cell cathode.

    PubMed

    Sherrell, Peter C; Zhang, Weimin; Zhao, Jie; Wallace, Gordon G; Chen, Jun; Minett, Andrew I

    2012-07-01

    Proton-exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) are expected to provide a complementary power supply to fossil fuels in the near future. The current reliance of fuel cells on platinum catalysts is undesirable. However, even the best-performing non-noble metal catalysts are not as efficient. To drive commercial viability of fuel cells forward in the short term, increased utilization of Pt catalysts is paramount. We have demonstrated improved power and energy densities in a single PEMFC using a designed cathode with a Pt loading of 0.1 mg cm(-2) on a mesoporous conductive entangled carbon nanotube (CNT)-based architecture. This electrode allows for rapid transfer of both fuel and waste to and from the electrode, respectively. Pt particles are bound tightly, directly to CNT sidewalls by a microwave-reduction technique, which provided increased charge transport at this interface. The Pt entangled CNT cathode, in combination with an E-TEK 0.2 mg cm(-2) anode, has a maximum power and energy density of 940 mW cm(-2) and 2700 mA cm(-2), respectively, and a power and energy density of 4.01 W mg(Pt)(-1) and 6.35 A mg(Pt)(-1) at 0.65 V. These power densities correspond to a specific mass activity of 0.81 g Pt per kW for the combined mass of both anode and cathode electrodes, approaching the current US Department of Energy efficiency target.

  15. Development and characterization of novel cathode materials for molten carbonate fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giorgi, L.; Carewska, M.; Patriarca, M.; Scaccia, S.; Simonetti, E.; Dibartolomeo, A.

    1994-04-01

    In the development of molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC) technology, the corrosion of materials is a serious problem for long-term operation. Indeed, slow dissolution of lithiated-NiO cathode in molten carbonates is the main obstacle for the commercialization of MCFCs. In the search of new, more stable, cathode materials, alternative compounds such as LiFeO2, Li2MnO3, and La(1-x)Sr(x)CoO3 are presently under investigation to replace the currently used lithiated-NiO. The aim of the present work was to investigate the possibility to produce electrode based on LiCoO2, a promising cathode material. At first, Li(x)CoO2 powder samples (0.8 less than x less than 1.1) were made by thermal decomposition of carbonate precursors in air. The synthesis processes were monitored by thermal analysis (TGA, DTA). The calcined and sintered powder samples were characterized by x ray diffraction (XRD) andatomic absorption spectrophotometry (F-AAS). A single phase was detected in all the samples, without any change in crystal structure as a function of lithium content. Porous sintered electrodes were prepared starting from lithium cobaltite powders mixed with different pore-formers by cold pressing and sintering. A bimodal pore-size distribution with a mean pore diameter in the range of 0.15 to 8 micron, a surface area of 2 to 12 sq m/g and a porosity of 10 to 65%, determined by the Hg-intrusion technique, were observed in all the materials. Conductivity measurements were carried out in the temperature range of 500-700 C, in air. The influence of the deviations from stoichiometry on the electronic properties was determined, the conductivity value of the stoichiometric compound being the lowest. A linear relationship between the electronic conductivity and the sample porosity was found. Solubility testing of the materials was carried out to evaluate their chemical stability in the electrolyte. The sampling method (F-AAS) and square wave voltammetry (SWV) were used to determine the

  16. ACTIVE CATHODES FOR SUPER-HIGH POWER DENSITY SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELLS THROUGH SPACE CHARGE EFFECTS

    SciTech Connect

    Anil V. Virkar

    2003-11-03

    This report summarizes the work done during the third quarter of the project. Effort was directed in two areas: (1) Further development of the model on the role of connectivity on ionic conductivity of porous bodies, including the role of grain boundaries, and its relationship to cathode polarization. Included indirectly through the grain boundary effect is the effect of space charge. (2) Synthesis of LSC + SDC composite cathode powders by combustion synthesis. (3) Fabrication and testing of anode-supported single cells made using synthesized LSC + ScDC composite cathodes.

  17. ACTIVE CATHODES FOR SUPER-HIGH POWER DENSITY SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELLS THROUGH SPACE CHARGE EFFECTS

    SciTech Connect

    Professor Anil V. Virkar

    2003-04-14

    This report summarizes the work done during the first quarter of the project. Effort was directed in three areas: (1) The determination of the role of ionic conductor morphology, used in composite cathodes, on the ionic conductivity of the ionic conductor. It was shown that if the particles are not well sintered, the necks formed between particles will be very narrow, and the resulting conductivity will be too low (resistivity will be too high). Specifically, a mathematical equation was derived to demonstrate the singular nature of conductivity. (2) Nanosize powders of Sc-doped CeO{sub 2} were prepared by combustion synthesis. The rationale is that the particle size of the composite electrode must be as small as possible to ensure a high ionic conductivity--and resulting in high performance in fuel cells. Di-gluconic acid (DGA) was used as fuel. The process led to the formation of nanosize Sc-doped CeO{sub 2}. The powder was characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). (3) Samples were sintered to form materials containing various levels of porosity, from {approx}3% to {approx}43%. Conductivity was measured over a range of temperatures by four probe DC method. It was observed that in highly porous samples, the conductivity was far lower than can be expected purely based on total porosity. The difference could be rationalized on the basis of the theoretical model developed.

  18. OPTIMIZATION OF THE CATHODE LONG-TERM STABILITY IN MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELLS: EXPERIMENTAL STUDY AND MATHEMATICAL MODELING

    SciTech Connect

    Hector Colonmer; Prabhu Ganesan; Nalini Subramanian; Dr. Bala Haran; Dr. Ralph E. White; Dr. Branko N. Popov

    2002-09-01

    This project focused on addressing the two main problems associated with state of art Molten Carbonate Fuel Cells, namely loss of cathode active material and stainless steel current collector deterioration due to corrosion. We followed a dual approach where in the first case we developed novel materials to replace the cathode and current collector currently used in molten carbonate fuel cells. In the second case we improved the performance of conventional cathode and current collectors through surface modification. States of art NiO cathode in MCFC undergo dissolution in the cathode melt thereby limiting the lifetime of the cell. To prevent this we deposited cobalt using an electroless deposition process. We also coated perovskite (La{sub 0.8}Sr{sub 0.2}CoO{sub 3}) in NiO thorough a sol-gel process. The electrochemical oxidation behavior of Co and perovskites coated electrodes is similar to that of the bare NiO cathode. Co and perovskite coatings on the surface decrease the dissolution of Ni into the melt and thereby stabilize the cathode. Both, cobalt and provskites coated nickel oxide, show a higher polarization compared to that of nickel oxide, which could be due to the reduced surface area. Cobalt substituted lithium nickel oxide (LiNi{sub 0.8}Co{sub 0.2}O{sub 2}) and lithium cobalt oxide were also studied. LiNi{sub x}Co{sub 1-x}O{sub 2} was synthesized by solid-state reaction procedure using lithium nitrate, nickel hydroxide and cobalt oxalate precursor. LiNi{sub x}Co{sub 1-x}O{sub 2} showed smaller dissolution of nickel than state of art nickel oxide cathode. The performance was comparable to that of nickel oxide. The corrosion of the current collector in the cathode side was also studied. The corrosion characteristics of both SS304 and SS304 coated with Co-Ni alloy were studied. This study confirms that surface modification of SS304 leads to the formation of complex scales with better barrier properties and better electronic conductivity at 650 C. A three

  19. Metal foams application to enhance cooling of open cathode polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sajid Hossain, Mohammad; Shabani, Bahman

    2015-11-01

    Conventional channel flow fields of open cathode Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFCs) introduce some challenges linked to humidity, temperature, pressure and oxygen concentration gradients along the conventional flow fields that reduce the cell performance. According to previous experimental reports, with conventional air flow fields, hotspot formation due to water accumulation in Gas Diffusion Layer (GDL) is common. Unlike continuous long flow passages in conventional channels, metal foams provide randomly interrupted flow passages. Re-circulation of fluid, due to randomly distributed tortuous ligaments, enhances temperature and humidity uniformity in the fluid. Moreover, the higher electrical conductivity of metal foams compared to non-metal current collectors and their very low mass density compared to solid metal materials are expected to increase the electrical performance of the cell while significantly reducing its weight. This article reviews the existing cooling systems and identifies the important parameters on the basis of reported literature in the air cooling systems of PEMFCs. This is followed by investigating metal foams as a possible option to be used within the structure of such PEMFCs as an option that can potentially address cooling and flow distribution challenges associated with using conventional flow channels, especially in air-cooled PEMFCs.

  20. Influence of the cathode architecture in the frequency response of self-breathing proton exchange membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferreira-Aparicio, P.; Chaparro, A. M.

    2014-12-01

    Self-breathing proton exchange membrane fuel cells are apparently simple devices, but efficient water management is critical for their performance. The cathode configuration should guarantee balanced rates between O2 accessibility from the circumventing air and H2O removal, and a good electric contact between catalyst layers and current collectors at the same time. By applying progressive modifications to the initial concept of a conventional PEMFC, the effect of the cathode architecture on cell performance has been analyzed. Frequency response analyses of the cell during steady-state potentiostatic stepping have yielded relevant information regarding limitations originated by the cathode impedance under high current load conditions. The primitive cell design has been optimized for self-breathing operation by means of this diagnostic tool. The thickness of the perforated plate in the cathode has been found to be one of the main factors contributing to limit oxygen accessibility when a high current load is demanded. Adequate cathode architecture is critical for reducing mass transport limitations in the catalytic layer and enhancing performance under self-breathing conditions.

  1. OPTIMIZATION OF THE CATHODE LONG-TERM STABILITY IN MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELLS: EXPERIMENTAL STUDY AND MATHEMATICAL MODELING

    SciTech Connect

    Dr. Ralph E. White

    2000-09-30

    The dissolution of NiO cathodes during cell operation is a limiting factor to the successful commercialization of molten carbonate fuel cells (MCFCs). Microencapsulation of the NiO cathode has been adopted as a surface modification technique to increase the stability of NiO cathodes in the carbonate melt. The material used for surface modification should possess thermodynamic stability in the molten carbonate and also should be electro catalytically active for MCFC reactions. A simple first principles model was developed to understand the influence of exchange current density and conductivity of the electrode material on the polarization of MCFC cathodes. The model predictions suggest that cobalt can be used to improve the corrosion resistance of NiO cathode without affecting its performance. Cobalt was deposited on NiO cathode by electroless deposition. The morphology and thermal oxidation behavior of Co coated NiO was studied using scanning electron microscopy and thermal gravimetric analysis respectively. The electrochemical performance of cobalt encapsulated NiO cathodes were investigated with open circuit potential measurement and current-potential polarization studies. These results were compared to that of bare NiO. The electrochemical oxidation behavior of cobalt-coated electrodes is similar to that of the bare NiO cathode. Dissolution of nickel into the molten carbonate melt was less in case of cobalt encapsulated nickel cathodes. Co coated on the surface prevents the dissolution of Ni in the melt and thereby stabilizes the cathode. Finally, cobalt coated nickel shows similar polarization characteristics as nickel oxide. A similar surface modification technique has been used to improve the performance of the SS 304 current collectors used in MCFC cells. SS 304 was encapsulated with nanostructured layers of NiCo and NiMo by electroless deposition. The corrosion behavior of bare and surface modified SS 304 in molten carbonate under cathode gas atmosphere was

  2. Nanoionics and Nanocatalysts: Conformal Mesoporous Surface Scaffold for Cathode of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yun; Gerdes, Kirk; Song, Xueyan

    2016-01-01

    Nanoionics has become increasingly important in devices and systems related to energy conversion and storage. Nevertheless, nanoionics and nanostructured electrodes development has been challenging for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) owing to many reasons including poor stability of the nanocrystals during fabrication of SOFCs at elevated temperatures. In this study, a conformal mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network was formed on the surface of La1-xSrxMnO3/yttria-stabilized zirconia (LSM/YSZ) cathode backbone using Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) and thermal treatment. The surface layer nanoionic network possesses open mesopores for gas penetration, and features a high density of grain boundaries for enhanced ion-transport. The mesoporous nanoionic network is remarkably stable and retains the same morphology after electrochemical operation at high temperatures of 650-800 °C for 400 hours. The stable mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network is further utilized to anchor catalytic Pt nanocrystals and create a nanocomposite that is stable at elevated temperatures. The power density of the ALD modified and inherently functional commercial cells exhibited enhancement by a factor of 1.5-1.7 operated at 0.8 V at 750 °C.

  3. Nanoionics and Nanocatalysts: Conformal Mesoporous Surface Scaffold for Cathode of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yun; Gerdes, Kirk; Song, Xueyan

    2016-09-01

    Nanoionics has become increasingly important in devices and systems related to energy conversion and storage. Nevertheless, nanoionics and nanostructured electrodes development has been challenging for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) owing to many reasons including poor stability of the nanocrystals during fabrication of SOFCs at elevated temperatures. In this study, a conformal mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network was formed on the surface of La1‑xSrxMnO3/yttria-stabilized zirconia (LSM/YSZ) cathode backbone using Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) and thermal treatment. The surface layer nanoionic network possesses open mesopores for gas penetration, and features a high density of grain boundaries for enhanced ion-transport. The mesoporous nanoionic network is remarkably stable and retains the same morphology after electrochemical operation at high temperatures of 650–800 °C for 400 hours. The stable mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network is further utilized to anchor catalytic Pt nanocrystals and create a nanocomposite that is stable at elevated temperatures. The power density of the ALD modified and inherently functional commercial cells exhibited enhancement by a factor of 1.5–1.7 operated at 0.8 V at 750 °C.

  4. Nanoionics and Nanocatalysts: Conformal Mesoporous Surface Scaffold for Cathode of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yun; Gerdes, Kirk; Song, Xueyan

    2016-01-01

    Nanoionics has become increasingly important in devices and systems related to energy conversion and storage. Nevertheless, nanoionics and nanostructured electrodes development has been challenging for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) owing to many reasons including poor stability of the nanocrystals during fabrication of SOFCs at elevated temperatures. In this study, a conformal mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network was formed on the surface of La1−xSrxMnO3/yttria-stabilized zirconia (LSM/YSZ) cathode backbone using Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) and thermal treatment. The surface layer nanoionic network possesses open mesopores for gas penetration, and features a high density of grain boundaries for enhanced ion-transport. The mesoporous nanoionic network is remarkably stable and retains the same morphology after electrochemical operation at high temperatures of 650–800 °C for 400 hours. The stable mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network is further utilized to anchor catalytic Pt nanocrystals and create a nanocomposite that is stable at elevated temperatures. The power density of the ALD modified and inherently functional commercial cells exhibited enhancement by a factor of 1.5–1.7 operated at 0.8 V at 750 °C. PMID:27605121

  5. Nanoionics and Nanocatalysts: Conformal Mesoporous Surface Scaffold for Cathode of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yun; Gerdes, Kirk; Song, Xueyan

    2016-01-01

    Nanoionics has become increasingly important in devices and systems related to energy conversion and storage. Nevertheless, nanoionics and nanostructured electrodes development has been challenging for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) owing to many reasons including poor stability of the nanocrystals during fabrication of SOFCs at elevated temperatures. In this study, a conformal mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network was formed on the surface of La1-xSrxMnO3/yttria-stabilized zirconia (LSM/YSZ) cathode backbone using Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) and thermal treatment. The surface layer nanoionic network possesses open mesopores for gas penetration, and features a high density of grain boundaries for enhanced ion-transport. The mesoporous nanoionic network is remarkably stable and retains the same morphology after electrochemical operation at high temperatures of 650-800 °C for 400 hours. The stable mesoporous ZrO2 nanoionic network is further utilized to anchor catalytic Pt nanocrystals and create a nanocomposite that is stable at elevated temperatures. The power density of the ALD modified and inherently functional commercial cells exhibited enhancement by a factor of 1.5-1.7 operated at 0.8 V at 750 °C. PMID:27605121

  6. Modeling the cathode compartment of polymer electrolyte fuel cells: Dead and active reaction zones

    SciTech Connect

    Kulikovsky, A.A.; Divisek, J.; Kornyshev, A.A.

    1999-11-01

    A two-dimensional model of the cathode compartment of a polymer electrolyte fuel cell has been developed. The existence of gas channels in the current collector is taken into account. The model is based on continuity equations for concentrations of the gases and Poisson's equations for potentials of membrane and carbon phase, coupled by Tafel relation for reaction kinetics. Stefan-Maxwell and Knudsen diffusion of gases are taken into account. The simulations were performed for high and low values of carbon phase conductivity. The results revealed (i) for a low value of carbon phase conductivity, a dead zone in the active layer in front of the gas channel is formed, where the reaction rate is small. The catalyst may be removed from this zone without significant loss in cell performance; (ii) For a high carbon phase conductivity value, such a zone is absent, but removal of the catalyst from the same part of the active layer forces the reaction to proceed more rapidly in the remaining parts, with only marginal losses in performance. This conclusion is valid for high diffusivity of oxygen. For low diffusivity, dead zones are formed in front of the current collector, so that catalyst can be removed from these zones. The results, thus, show the possibilities for a considerable reduction of the amount of catalyst.

  7. Application of graphene-based nanomaterials as novel cathode catalysts for improving power generation in single chamber microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valipour, Alireza; Ayyaru, Sivasankaran; Ahn, Youngho

    2016-09-01

    The low catalytic activity, limited resources, complexity and costs, and non-environmentally friendly nature are key factors limiting the application of non-precious metals and their composites at the cathode in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). This study evaluated the feasibility of graphene-based nanomaterials (RGOHI-AcOH vs. RGO/Ni nanoparticle composite) as novel cathode catalysts in single chamber air-cathode MFCs. A series of MFCs with different catalyst loadings were produced. The electrochemical behavior of the MFCs were evaluated by cyclic voltammetry (CV) and impedance spectroscopy (EIS). As a result, the MFCs with the RGOHI-AcOH cathodes showed greater maximum power densities (>37%) than those with the RGO/Ni nanoparticle cathodes. In the MFCs, the highest maximum power density of 1683 ± 23 mW/m2 (CE = 72 ± 3%), which covers 77% of that estimated for Pt/C (2201 ± 45 mW/m2, CE = 81 ± 4%), was obtained from the double loading RGOHI-AcOH cathodes. Among the MFCs with the RGO/Ni nanoparticle composite cathodes, those loaded with a double catalyst (1015 ± 28 mW/m2, CE = 70 ± 2%) showed better power performance than the others. Both CV and EIS showed good agreement with the MFC results. This study suggests that the RGOHI-AcOH cathode, particularly with a double catalyst loading, is promising for sustainable low-cost green materials, stable power generation and the long-term operation of MFCs.

  8. Immobilization of a Metal-Nitrogen-Carbon Catalyst on Activated Carbon with Enhanced Cathode Performance in Microbial Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wulin; Logan, Bruce E

    2016-08-23

    Applications of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are limited in part by low power densities mainly due to cathode performance. Successful immobilization of an Fe-N-C co-catalyst on activated carbon (Fe-N-C/AC) improved the oxygen reduction reaction to nearly a four-electron transfer, compared to a twoelectron transfer achieved using AC. With acetate as the fuel, the maximum power density was 4.7±0.2 W m(-2) , which is higher than any previous report for an air-cathode MFC. With domestic wastewater as a fuel, MFCs with the Fe-N-C/AC cathode produced up to 0.8±0.03 W m(-2) , which was twice that obtained with a Pt-catalyzed cathode. The use of this Fe-N-C/AC catalyst can therefore substantially increase power production, and enable broader applications of MFCs for renewable electricity generation using waste materials. PMID:27416965

  9. Nanoporous silver cathode surface treated by atomic layer deposition of CeO(x) for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Neoh, Ke Chean; Han, Gwon Deok; Kim, Manjin; Kim, Jun Woo; Choi, Hyung Jong; Park, Suk Won; Shim, Joon Hyung

    2016-05-01

    We evaluated the performance of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) with a 50 nm thin silver (Ag) cathode surface treated with cerium oxide (CeO(x)) by atomic layer deposition (ALD). The performances of bare and ALD-treated Ag cathodes were evaluated on gadolinia-doped ceria (GDC) electrolyte supporting cells with a platinum (Pt) anode over 300 °C-450 °C. Our work confirms that ALD CeO(x) treatment enhances cathodic performance and thermal stability of the Ag cathode. The performance difference between cells using a Ag cathode optimally treated with an ALD CeO(x) surface and a reference Pt cathode is about 50% at 450 °C in terms of fuel cell power output in our experiment. The bare Ag cathode completely agglomerated into islands during fuel cell operation at 450 °C, while the ALD CeO(x) treatment effectively protects the porosity of the cathode. We also discuss the long-term stability of ALD CeO(x)-treated Ag cathodes related to the microstructure of the layers.

  10. Nanoporous silver cathode surface treated by atomic layer deposition of CeO x for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chean Neoh, Ke; Han, Gwon Deok; Kim, Manjin; Kim, Jun Woo; Jong Choi, Hyung; Park, Suk Won; Shim, Joon Hyung

    2016-05-01

    We evaluated the performance of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) with a 50 nm thin silver (Ag) cathode surface treated with cerium oxide (CeO x ) by atomic layer deposition (ALD). The performances of bare and ALD-treated Ag cathodes were evaluated on gadolinia-doped ceria (GDC) electrolyte supporting cells with a platinum (Pt) anode over 300 °C-450 °C. Our work confirms that ALD CeO x treatment enhances cathodic performance and thermal stability of the Ag cathode. The performance difference between cells using a Ag cathode optimally treated with an ALD CeO x surface and a reference Pt cathode is about 50% at 450 °C in terms of fuel cell power output in our experiment. The bare Ag cathode completely agglomerated into islands during fuel cell operation at 450 °C, while the ALD CeO x treatment effectively protects the porosity of the cathode. We also discuss the long-term stability of ALD CeO x -treated Ag cathodes related to the microstructure of the layers.

  11. An Aurivillius Oxide Based Cathode with Excellent CO2 Tolerance for Intermediate-Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Yinlong; Zhou, Wei; Chen, Yubo; Shao, Zongping

    2016-07-25

    The Aurivillius oxide Bi2 Sr2 Nb2 MnO12-δ (BSNM) was used as a cobalt-free cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). To the best of our knowledge, the BSNM oxide is the only alkaline-earth-containing cathode material with complete CO2 tolerance that has been reported thus far. BSNM not only shows favorable activity in the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) at intermediate temperatures but also exhibits a low thermal expansion coefficient, excellent structural stability, and good chemical compatibility with the electrolyte. These features highlight the potential of the new BSNM material as a highly promising cathode material for IT-SOFCs.

  12. An Aurivillius Oxide Based Cathode with Excellent CO2 Tolerance for Intermediate-Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Yinlong; Zhou, Wei; Chen, Yubo; Shao, Zongping

    2016-07-25

    The Aurivillius oxide Bi2 Sr2 Nb2 MnO12-δ (BSNM) was used as a cobalt-free cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). To the best of our knowledge, the BSNM oxide is the only alkaline-earth-containing cathode material with complete CO2 tolerance that has been reported thus far. BSNM not only shows favorable activity in the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) at intermediate temperatures but also exhibits a low thermal expansion coefficient, excellent structural stability, and good chemical compatibility with the electrolyte. These features highlight the potential of the new BSNM material as a highly promising cathode material for IT-SOFCs. PMID:27294808

  13. Microstructure, property and processing relation in gradient porous cathode of solid oxide fuel cells using statistical continuum mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamedani, Hoda Amani; Baniassadi, Majid; Khaleel, M.; Sun, Xin; Ahzi, S.; Ruch, D.; Garmestani, H.

    2011-08-01

    This paper investigates the relation between microstructure, macroscopic transport properties, and fabrication processing for a gradient porous cathode of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). Functionally graded porous cathode with smooth variations in pore size is composed of lanthanum strontium manganite (LSM) fabricated on yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) electrolyte substrate using a multi-step spray pyrolysis (SP) technique at various deposition conditions. Two-dimensional (2D) serial-sections of the gradient porous microstructure obtained by FIB-SEM are fully characterized using statistical correlation functions. Results of statistical analysis of the microstructures revealed that the SP processing technique is capable of generating statistically identical and homogeneous microstructures with smooth gradient in pore size resulting from changing the processing parameters. Strong contrast statistical approach is also used to predict the in-plane temperature dependent effective electrical conductivity of the gradient porous cathode and the results are compared to the experimental data.

  14. OPTIMIZATION OF THE CATHODE LONG-TERM STABILITY IN MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELLS: EXPERIMENTAL STUDY AND MATHEMATICAL MODELING

    SciTech Connect

    Dr. Ralph E. White; Dr. Branko N. Popov

    2001-10-01

    The dissolution of NiO cathodes during cell operation is a limiting factor to the successful commercialization of molten carbonate fuel cells (MCFCs). Lithium cobalt oxide coating onto the porous nickel electrode has been adopted to modify the conventional MCFC cathode which is believed to increase the stability of the cathodes in the carbonate melt. The material used for surface modification should possess thermodynamic stability in the molten carbonate and also should be electro catalytically active for MCFC reactions. Lithium Cobalt oxide was coated on Ni cathode by a sol-gel coating. The morphology and the LiCoO{sub 2} formation of LiCoO{sub 2} coated NiO was studied using scanning electron microscopy and X-Ray diffraction studies respectively. The electrochemical performance lithium cobalt oxide coated NiO cathodes were investigated with open circuit potential measurement and current-potential polarization studies. These results were compared to that of bare NiO. Dissolution of nickel into the molten carbonate melt was less in case of lithium cobalt oxide coated nickel cathodes. LiCoO{sub 2} coated on the surface prevents the dissolution of Ni in the melt and thereby stabilizes the cathode. Finally, lithium cobalt oxide coated nickel shows similar polarization characteristics as nickel oxide. Conventional theoretical models for the molten carbonate fuel cell cathode are based on the thin film agglomerate model. The principal deficiency of the agglomerate model, apart from the simplified pore structure assumed, is the lack of measured values for film thickness and agglomerate radius. Both these parameters cannot be estimated appropriately. Attempts to estimate the thickness of the film vary by two orders of magnitude. To avoid these problems a new three phase homogeneous model has been developed using the volume averaging technique. The model considers the potential and current variation in both liquid and solid phases. Using this approach, volume averaged

  15. Simultaneous selection of soil electroactive bacterial communities associated to anode and cathode in a two-chamber Microbial Fuel Cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiellini, Carolina; Bacci, Giovanni; Fani, Renato; Mocali, Stefano

    2016-04-01

    Different bacteria have evolved strategies to transfer electrons over their cell surface to (or from) their extracellular environment. This electron transfer enables the use of these bacteria in bioelectrochemical systems (BES) such as Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs). In MFC research the biological reactions at the cathode have long been a secondary point of interest. However, bacterial biocathodes in MFCs represent a potential advantage compared to traditional cathodes, for both their low costs and their low impact on the environment. The main challenge in biocathode set-up is represented by the selection of a bacterial community able to efficiently accept electrons from the electrode, starting from an environmental matrix. In this work, a constant voltage was supplied on a two-chamber MFC filled up with soil over three weeks in order to simultaneously select an electron donor bacterial biomass on the anode and an electron acceptor biomass on the cathode, starting from the same soil. Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) analysis was performed to characterize the bacterial community of the initial soil, in the anode, in the cathode and in the control chamber not supplied with any voltage. Results highlighted that both the MFC conditions and the voltage supply affected the soil bacterial communities, providing a selection of different bacterial groups preferentially associated to the anode (Betaproteobacteria, Bacilli and Clostridia) and to the cathode (Actinobacteria and Alphaproteobacteria). These results confirmed that several electroactive bacteria are naturally present within a top soil and, moreover, different soil bacterial genera could provide different electrical properties.

  16. Enhanced performance of an air-cathode microbial fuel cell with oxygen supply from an externally connected algal bioreactor.

    PubMed

    Kakarla, Ramesh; Kim, Jung Rae; Jeon, Byong-Hun; Min, Booki

    2015-11-01

    An algae bioreactor (ABR) was externally connected to air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs) to increase power generation by supplying a high amount of oxygen to cathode electrode. The MFC with oxygen fed from ABR produced maximum cell voltage and cathode potential at a fixed loading of 459 mV and 10 mV, respectively. During polarization analysis, the MFC displayed a maximum power density of 0.63 W/m(2) (at 2.06 A/m(2)) using 39.2% O2 from ABR, which was approximately 30% higher compared with use of atmospheric air (0.44 W/m(2), 20.8% O2,). The cyclic voltammogram analysis exhibited a higher reduction current of -137 mA with 46.5% O2 compared to atmospheric air (-115 mA). Oxygen supply by algae bioreactor to air-cathode MFC could also maintain better MFC performance in long term operation by minimizing cathode potential drop over time.

  17. Long-term assessment of best cathode position to maximise microbial fuel cell performance in horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetlands.

    PubMed

    Corbella, Clara; Garfí, Marianna; Puigagut, Jaume

    2016-09-01

    The cathode of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) implemented in constructed wetlands (CWs) is generally set in close contact with water surface to provide a rich oxygen environment. However, water level variations caused by plants evapotranspiration in CWs might decrease MFC performance by limiting oxygen transfer to the cathode. Main objective of this work was to quantify the effect of water level variation on MFC performance implemented in HSSF CW. For the purpose of this work two MFCs were implemented within a HSSF CW pilot plant fed with primary treated domestic wastewater. Cell voltage (Ecell) and the relative distance between the cathode and the water level were recorded for one year. Results showed that Ecell was greatly influenced by the relative distance between the cathode and the water level, giving an optimal cathode position of about 1 to 2cm above water level. Both water level variation and Ecell were daily and seasonal dependent, showing a pronounced day/night variation during warm periods and showing almost no daily variation during cold periods. Energy production under pronounced daily water level variation was 40% lower (80±56mWh/m(2)·day) than under low water level variation (131±61mWh/m(2)·day). Main conclusion of the present work is that of the performance of MFC implemented in HSSF CW is highly dependent on plants evapotranspiration. Therefore, MFC that are to be implemented in CWs shall be designed to be able to cope with pronounced water level variations.

  18. Graphitic biochar as a cathode electrocatalyst support for microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Huggins, Tyler M; Pietron, Jeremy J; Wang, Heming; Ren, Zhiyong Jason; Biffinger, Justin C

    2015-11-01

    Graphitic biochar (BC) was generated using high temperature gasification and alkaline post-treatment (BCw) of wood-based biomass. The BCw was evaluated as a manganese oxide electrocatalytic support (MnO/BCw) and microbial fuel cell (MFC) air cathode. Nano-structured MnO2 crystals were successfully immobilized on biomass-based graphitic sheets and characterized using physical, chemical, and electrochemical analyses. Cyclic voltammetry of MnO/BCw/Nafion inks showed electrochemical features typical of β-MnO2 with a current density of 0.9 mA cm(-2). BC showed satisfactory maximum power densities of 146.7 mW m(-2) (BCw) and 187.8 W m(-2) (MnO/BCw), compared with Vulcan Carbon (VC) (156.8 mW m(-2)) and manganese oxide VC composites (MnO/VC) (606.1 mW m(-2)). These materials were also tested as oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) catalysts for single chamber MFCs inoculated with anaerobic sludge. Our results demonstrate that BC can serve as an effective, low cost, and scalable material for MFC application.

  19. Anolyte recirculation effects in buffered and unbuffered single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Liang; Zhu, Xun; Kashima, Hiroyuki; Li, Jun; Ye, Ding-ding; Liao, Qiang; Regan, John M

    2015-03-01

    Two identical microbial fuel cells (MFCs) with a floating air-cathode were operated under either buffered (MFC-B) or bufferless (MFC-BL) conditions to investigate anolyte recirculation effects on enhancing proton transfer. With an external resistance of 50 Ω and recirculation rate of 1.0 ml/min, MFC-BL had a 27% lower voltage (9.7% lower maximal power density) but a 64% higher Coulombic efficiency (CE) than MFC-B. MFC-B had a decreased voltage output, batch time, and CE with increasing recirculation rate resulting from more oxygen transfer into the anode. However, increasing the recirculation rate within a low range significantly enhanced proton transfer in MFC-BL, resulting in a higher voltage output, a longer batch time, and a higher CE. A further increase in recirculation rate decreased the batch time and CE of MFC-BL due to excess oxygen transfer into anode outweighing the proton-transfer benefits. The unbuffered MFC had an optimal recirculation rate of 0.35 ml/min.

  20. Graphitic biochar as a cathode electrocatalyst support for microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Huggins, Tyler M; Pietron, Jeremy J; Wang, Heming; Ren, Zhiyong Jason; Biffinger, Justin C

    2015-11-01

    Graphitic biochar (BC) was generated using high temperature gasification and alkaline post-treatment (BCw) of wood-based biomass. The BCw was evaluated as a manganese oxide electrocatalytic support (MnO/BCw) and microbial fuel cell (MFC) air cathode. Nano-structured MnO2 crystals were successfully immobilized on biomass-based graphitic sheets and characterized using physical, chemical, and electrochemical analyses. Cyclic voltammetry of MnO/BCw/Nafion inks showed electrochemical features typical of β-MnO2 with a current density of 0.9 mA cm(-2). BC showed satisfactory maximum power densities of 146.7 mW m(-2) (BCw) and 187.8 W m(-2) (MnO/BCw), compared with Vulcan Carbon (VC) (156.8 mW m(-2)) and manganese oxide VC composites (MnO/VC) (606.1 mW m(-2)). These materials were also tested as oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) catalysts for single chamber MFCs inoculated with anaerobic sludge. Our results demonstrate that BC can serve as an effective, low cost, and scalable material for MFC application. PMID:26141670

  1. Continuous electricity generation by a graphite granule baffled air-cathode microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Feng, Yujie; Lee, He; Wang, Xin; Liu, Yaolan; He, Weihua

    2010-01-01

    A baffled air-cathode microbial fuel cell (BAFMFC) was designed and operated under continuous flow. With glucose fed as substrate, an average voltage of 652 mV was obtained under the external resistance of 1000 Omega (30 degrees C). The maximum power density was 15.2 W/m(3) with the chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal rate of 88.0%. The overall resistance was 13.7 Omega while ohmic internal resistance was 10.8 Omega. Average COD removal rate was 69.7-88.0%, when COD loading varied from 4.11 kg COD/(m(3)NACd) to 16.0 kg COD/(m(3)NACd). The liquid from corn stover steam explosion process (COD=7160+/-50mg/L) was treated by BAFMFC, and the maximum power density was 10.7 W/m(3) with the average COD removal rate was 89.1%. The present study indicated BAFMFC can be comparable to the traditional anaerobic baffled reactor in COD removal rate for high-concentration wastewater and have an advantage in energy harvest from wastewater.

  2. A ternary cathode composed of LSM, YSZ and Ce0.9Mn0.1O2-δ for the intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Liu, Li; Zhao, Zhe; Zhang, Xiaomin; Cui, Daan; Tu, Baofeng; Ou, Dingrong; Cheng, Mojie

    2013-01-28

    The YSZ electrolyte fuel cell with a ternary cathode composed of LSM-YSZ-Ce(0.9)Mn(0.1)O(2-δ) exhibits ca. 2.6 times higher current density than that with a binary cathode composed of LSM-YSZ at 600 °C.

  3. Catalysts for ultrahigh current density oxygen cathodes for space fuel cell applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tryk, Donald A.; Yeager, E.

    1992-01-01

    The objective was to identify promising electrocatalyst/support systems for oxygen cathodes capable of operating at ultrahigh current densities in alkaline fuel cells. Such cells will require operation at relatively high temperatures and O2 pressures. A number of materials were prepared, including Pb-Ru and Pb-Ir pyrochlores, RuO2 and Pt-doped RuO2, lithiated NiO and La-Ni perovskites. Several of these materials were prepared using techniques that had not been previously used to prepare them. Particularly interesting was the use of the alkaline solution technique to prepare Pt-doped and Pb-Ru pyrochlores in high area form. Also interesting was the use of the fusion (melt) method for preparing the Pb-Ru pyrochlore. Several of the materials were also deposited with platinum. Well-crystallized Pb2Ru2O(7-y) was used to fabricate very high performance O2 cathodes with good stability in room temperature KOH. This material was also found to be stable over a useful potential range at approx. 140 C in concentrated KOH. For some of the samples, fabrication of the gas-fed electrodes could not be fully optimized during this project period. Future work may be directed at this problem. Pyrochlores that were not well-crystallized were found to be unstable in alkaline solution. Very good O2 reduction performance and stability were observed with Pb2RuO(7-y) in a carbon-based gas-fed electrode with an anion-conducting membrane placed on the electrolyte side of the electrode. The performance came within a factor of about two of that observed without carbon. High area platinum and gold supported on several conductive metal oxide supports were examined. Only small improvements in O2 reduction performance at room temperature were observed for Pb2Ru2O(7-y) as a support because of the high intrinsic activity of the pyrochlore. In contrast, a large improvement was observed for Li-doped NiO as a support for Pt. Very poor performance was observed for Au deposited on Li-NiO at approx. 150 C

  4. Characterization of bacterial and archaeal communities in air-cathode microbial fuel cells, open circuit and sealed-off reactors.

    PubMed

    Shehab, Noura; Li, Dong; Amy, Gary L; Logan, Bruce E; Saikaly, Pascal E

    2013-11-01

    A large percentage of organic fuel consumed in a microbial fuel cell (MFC) is lost as a result of oxygen transfer through the cathode. In order to understand how this oxygen transfer affects the microbial community structure, reactors were operated in duplicate using three configurations: closed circuit (CC; with current generation), open circuit (OC; no current generation), and sealed off cathodes (SO; no current, with a solid plate placed across the cathode). Most (98 %) of the chemical oxygen demand (COD) was removed during power production in the CC reactor (maximum of 640 ± 10 mW/m(2)), with a low percent of substrate converted to current (coulombic efficiency of 26.5 ± 2.1 %). Sealing the cathode reduced COD removal to 7 %, but with an open cathode, there was nearly as much COD removal by the OC reactor (94.5 %) as the CC reactor. Oxygen transfer into the reactor substantially affected the composition of the microbial communities. Based on analysis of the biofilms using 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing, microbes most similar to Geobacter were predominant on the anodes in the CC MFC (72 % of sequences), but the most abundant bacteria were Azoarcus (42 to 47 %) in the OC reactor, and Dechloromonas (17 %) in the SO reactor. Hydrogenotrophic methanogens were most predominant, with sequences most similar to Methanobacterium in the CC and SO reactor, and Methanocorpusculum in the OC reactors. These results show that oxygen leakage through the cathode substantially alters the bacterial anode communities, and that hydrogenotrophic methanogens predominate despite high concentrations of acetate. The predominant methanogens in the CC reactor most closely resembled those in the SO reactor, demonstrating that oxygen leakage alters methanogenic as well as general bacterial communities.

  5. OPTIMIZATION OF THE CATHODE LONG TERM STABILITY IN MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELLS: EXPERIMENTAL STUDY AND MATHEMATICAL MODELING

    SciTech Connect

    Anand Durairajan; Bala Haran; Branko N. Popov; Ralph E. White

    2000-05-01

    The cathode materials for molten carbonate fuel cells (MCFCs) must have low dissolution rate, high structural strength and good electrical conductivity. Currently available cathodes are made of lithiated NiO which have acceptable structural strength and conductivity. However a study carried out by Orfeld et al. and Shores et al. indicated that the nickel cathodes dissolved, then precipitated and reformed as dendrites across the electrolyte matrix. This results in a decrease in cell utilization and eventually leads to shorting of the cell. The solubility of NiO was found to depend upon the acidity/basicity of the melt (basicity is directly proportional to log P{sub CO2}), carbonate composition, H{sub 2}O partial pressure and temperature. Urushibata et al. found that the dissolution of the cathode is a primary life limiting constraint of MCFCs, particularly in pressurized operation. With currently available NiO cathodes, the goal of 40,000 hours for the lifetime of MCFC appears achievable with cell operation at atmospheric pressure. However, the cell life at 10 atm and higher cell pressures is in the range between 5,000 to 10,000 hours. The overall objective of this research is to develop a superior cathode for MCFC's with improved catalytic ability, enhanced corrosion resistance with low ohmic losses, improved electronic conductivity. We also plan to understand the corrosion processes occurring at the cathode/molten carbonate interface. The following cathode materials will be subjected to detailed electrochemical, performance, structural and corrosion studies. (i) Passivated NiO alloys using chemical treatment with yttrium ion implantation and anodic yttrium molybdate treatment; (ii) Novel composite materials based on NiO and nanosized Ce, Yt, Mo; (iii) Co doped LiNiO{sub 2} LiNiO{sub 2} doped with 10 to 20% Co (LiCo{sub 0.2}NiO{sub 2}) and NiO cathodes; and (iv) CoO as a replacement for NiO. Passivation treatments will inhibit corrosion and increase the stability

  6. Novel ruthenium pyrochlore materials for cathode application in intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abate, Chiara

    The performance of solid oxide fuel cells, which operate in the temperature range of 500- 700°C (IT-SOFCs), strongly depends on the cathode employed because the interfacial polarization increases rapidly with decreasing temperature. Pyrochlore oxides with Ru on the B-site of the crystal lattice have been shown to have excellent electro catalytic behaviour for oxygen reduction reaction and high electrical conductivity. These characteristics make pyrochlore ruthenates good candidates for IT-SOFCs cathodes. In this work, several compositions of Y2-xPrxRu 2O7 (x = 0, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 1.5, 2) pyrochlore powders were prepared by a soft precipitation method. All the synthesized powders were single pyrochlore phase with particles size depending on the material compositions. Praseodymium (Pr) was introduced in the A-site with the intent to improve the material electrical proprieties and consequently the overall cathode performance. In fact, without destabilizing the pyrochlore structure, Pr caused structural changes that allow higher electron mobility. The electrical measurements showed that the electrical conductivity of the material increased with increasing the Pr content. Compositions of Y2-xPrxRu2O7 were tested as a cathode to compare its electro-catalytic effect with either of two electrolytes, gadolinium doped ceria (GDC) or erbium stabilized bismuth oxide (ESB). Both systems, Y2-xPrxRu2O 7/ESB and Y2-xPrxRu2O7/GDC, showed a similar variation of the electrode area specific resistance (ASR) with Pr content. This trend was shown to be due to a change of the cathode microstructure upon increasing Pr content. The 25 mol % Pr cathode material on ESB electrolyte presented the best performance. A change of ASR as a function of oxygen partial pressure suggested that the oxygen diffusion is the limiting step of the electrode kinetics. Hence, the better cathode performance on ESB resulted from a much lower charge transfer resistance compared to the GDC system. A partial solid

  7. Power generation using spinel manganese-cobalt oxide as a cathode catalyst for microbial fuel cell applications.

    PubMed

    Mahmoud, Mohamed; Gad-Allah, Tarek A; El-Khatib, K M; El-Gohary, Fatma

    2011-11-01

    This study focused on the use of spinel manganese-cobalt (Mn-Co) oxide, prepared by a solid state reaction, as a cathode catalyst to replace platinum in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) applications. Spinel Mn-Co oxides, with an Mn/Co atomic ratios of 0.5, 1, and 2, were prepared and examined in an air cathode MFCs which was fed with a molasses-laden synthetic wastewater and operated in batch mode. Among the three Mn-Co oxide cathodes and after 300 h of operation, the Mn-Co oxide catalyst with Mn/Co atomic ratio of 2 (MnCo-2) exhibited the highest power generation 113 mW/m2 at cell potential of 279 mV, which were lower than those for the Pt catalyst (148 mW/m2 and 325 mV, respectively). This study indicated that using spinel Mn-Co oxide to replace platinum as a cathodic catalyst enhances power generation, increases contaminant removal, and substantially reduces the cost of MFCs.

  8. A robust one-compartment fuel cell with a polynuclear cyanide complex as a cathode for utilizing H2O2 as a sustainable fuel at ambient conditions.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Yusuke; Yoneda, Masaki; Fukuzumi, Shunichi

    2013-08-26

    A robust one-compartment H2O2 fuel cell, which operates without membranes at room temperature, has been constructed by using a series of polynuclear cyanide complexes that contain Fe, Co, Mn, and Cr as cathodes, in sharp contrast to conventional H2 and MeOH fuel cells, which require membranes and high temperatures. A high open-circuit potential of 0.68 V was achieved by using Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] on a carbon cloth as the cathode and a Ni mesh as the anode of a H2O2 fuel cell by using an aqueous solution of H2O2 (0.30  M, pH 3) with a maximum power density of 0.45 mW cm(-2). The open-circuit potential and maximum power density of the H2O2 fuel cell were further increased to 0.78 V and 1.2 mW cm(-2), respectively, by operation under these conditions at pH 1. No catalytic activity of Co3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] and Co3[{Fe(III)(CN)6}2] towards H2O2 reduction suggests that the N-bound Fe ions are active species for H2O2 reduction. H2O2 fuel cells that used Fe3[{Mn(III)(CN)6}2] and Fe3[{Cr(III)(CN)6}2] as the cathode exhibited lower performance compared with that using Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] as a cathode, because ligand isomerization of Fe3[{M(III)(CN)6}2] into (FeM2)[{Fe(II)(CN)6}2] (M = Cr or Mn) occurred to form inactive Fe-C bonds under ambient conditions, whereas no ligand isomerization of Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] occurred under the same reaction conditions. The importance of stable Fe(2+)-N bonds was further indicated by the high performance of the H2O2 fuel cells with Fe3[{Ir(III)(CN)6}2] and Fe3[{Rh(III)(CN)6}2], which also contained stable Fe(2+)-N bonds. The stable Fe(2+)-N bonds in Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2], which lead to high activity for the electrocatalytic reduction of H2O2, allow Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] to act as a superior cathode in one-compartment H2O2 fuel cells.

  9. A robust one-compartment fuel cell with a polynuclear cyanide complex as a cathode for utilizing H2O2 as a sustainable fuel at ambient conditions.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Yusuke; Yoneda, Masaki; Fukuzumi, Shunichi

    2013-08-26

    A robust one-compartment H2O2 fuel cell, which operates without membranes at room temperature, has been constructed by using a series of polynuclear cyanide complexes that contain Fe, Co, Mn, and Cr as cathodes, in sharp contrast to conventional H2 and MeOH fuel cells, which require membranes and high temperatures. A high open-circuit potential of 0.68 V was achieved by using Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] on a carbon cloth as the cathode and a Ni mesh as the anode of a H2O2 fuel cell by using an aqueous solution of H2O2 (0.30  M, pH 3) with a maximum power density of 0.45 mW cm(-2). The open-circuit potential and maximum power density of the H2O2 fuel cell were further increased to 0.78 V and 1.2 mW cm(-2), respectively, by operation under these conditions at pH 1. No catalytic activity of Co3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] and Co3[{Fe(III)(CN)6}2] towards H2O2 reduction suggests that the N-bound Fe ions are active species for H2O2 reduction. H2O2 fuel cells that used Fe3[{Mn(III)(CN)6}2] and Fe3[{Cr(III)(CN)6}2] as the cathode exhibited lower performance compared with that using Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] as a cathode, because ligand isomerization of Fe3[{M(III)(CN)6}2] into (FeM2)[{Fe(II)(CN)6}2] (M = Cr or Mn) occurred to form inactive Fe-C bonds under ambient conditions, whereas no ligand isomerization of Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] occurred under the same reaction conditions. The importance of stable Fe(2+)-N bonds was further indicated by the high performance of the H2O2 fuel cells with Fe3[{Ir(III)(CN)6}2] and Fe3[{Rh(III)(CN)6}2], which also contained stable Fe(2+)-N bonds. The stable Fe(2+)-N bonds in Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2], which lead to high activity for the electrocatalytic reduction of H2O2, allow Fe3[{Co(III)(CN)6}2] to act as a superior cathode in one-compartment H2O2 fuel cells. PMID:23868499

  10. Influence of nano-sized LSCF cathode and its firing temperature on electrochemical performance in oxygen-excess-type solid electrolyte (OESE)-based fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mieda, Hiroyuki; Mineshige, Atsushi; Saito, Atsushi; Yazawa, Tetsuo; Yoshioka, Hideki; Mori, Ryohei

    2014-12-01

    Dense films of an oxygen-excess-type solid electrolyte (OESE) based on Mg-doped lanthanum silicate (MDLS) were fabricated and applied to electrolyte materials for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). To obtain dense MDLS films on NiO-MDLS porous substrates, a conventional spin-coating technique using the MDLS printable paste, obtained by mixing nano-sized MDLS particles and a dispersant, was employed. The Ni-MDLS anode supported single cells were then fabricated by printing porous cathode layer onto the electrolyte film surface. By optimizing fabrication conditions of an MDLS film and cathode, the highly active cathode/OESE interface (ASR = 0.23 Ω cm2 at 873 K) were successfully obtained, which resulted in high power density of 0.166 W cm-2 at 873 K in the fuel cell test when operated with argon-diluted hydrogen and pure oxygen as the fuel and the cathode gas, respectively.

  11. Accelerated OH(-) transport in activated carbon air cathode by modification of quaternary ammonium for microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin; Feng, Cuijuan; Ding, Ning; Zhang, Qingrui; Li, Nan; Li, Xiaojing; Zhang, Yueyong; Zhou, Qixing

    2014-04-01

    Activated carbon (AC) is a promising catalyst for the air cathode of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) because of its high performance and low cost. To increase the performance of AC air cathodes, the acceleration of OH(-) transport is one of the most important methods, but it has not been widely investigated. Here we added quaternary ammonium to ACs by in situ anchoring of a quaternary ammonium/epoxide-reacting compound (QAE) or ex situ mixing with anion exchange resins in order to modify ACs from not only the external surface but also inside the pores. In 50 mM phosphate buffer solution (PBS), the in situ anchoring of QAE was a more effective way to increase the power. The highest power density of 2781 ± 36 mW/m(2), which is 10% higher than that of the control, was obtained using QAE-anchored AC cathodes. When the medium was switched to an unbuffered NaCl solution, the increase in maximum power density (885 ± 25 mW/m(2)) was in accordance with the anion exchange capacity (0.219 mmol/g). The highest power density of the anion exchange resin-mixed air cathode was 51% higher than that of the control, indicating that anion exchange is urgently needed in real wastewaters. Excess anchoring of QAE blocked both the mesopores and micropores, causing the power output to be inhibited.

  12. Characterization of Cr poisoning in a solid oxide fuel cell cathode using a high-energy x-ray microbeam.

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, D. J.; Almer, J.; Cruse, T.

    2010-01-01

    A key feature of planar solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) is the feasibility of using metallic interconnects made of high temperature ferritic stainless steels, which reduce system cost while providing excellent electric conductivity. Such interconnects, however, contain high levels of chromium, which has been found to be associated with SOFC cathode performance degradation at SOFC operating temperatures; a phenomenon known as Cr poisoning. Here, we demonstrate an accurate measurement of the phase and concentration distributions of Cr species in a degraded SOFC, as well as related properties including deviatoric strain, integrated porosity, and lattice parameter variation, using high energy microbeam X-ray diffraction and radiography. We unambiguously identify (MnCr){sub 3}O{sub 4} and Cr{sub 2}O{sub 3} as the two main contaminant phases and find that their concentrations correlate strongly with the cathode layer composition. Cr{sub 2}O{sub 3} deposition within the active cathode region reduces porosity and produces compressive residual strains, which hinders the reactant gas percolation and can cause structural breakdown of the SOFC cathode. The information obtained through this study can be used to better understand the Cr-poisoning mechanism and improve SOFC design.

  13. Strontium-doped samarium manganite as cathode materials for oxygen reduction reaction in solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, W.; Xiong, C. Y.; Jia, L. C.; Pu, J.; Chi, B.; Chen, X.; Schwank, J. W.; Li, J.

    2015-06-01

    SmxSr1-xMnO3 with x = 0.3, 0.5 and 0.8, denoted as SSM37, SSM55 and SSM82, respectively, have been prepared via a sol-gel route as materials for cathodes in solid oxide fuel cells. Their activities in the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) have been evaluated in comparison with the state-of-the-art cathode material La0.8Sr0.2MnO3 (LSM82) by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and thermogravimetry (TG). Among all the prepared cathodes, the SSM55 exhibits the lowest values, while the LSM82 exhibits the highest polarization resistance, at open circuit voltage (OCV) and temperatures from 650 to 800 °C. This result indicates that the prepared SmxSr1-xMnO3 is a promising replacement for LSM82 as cathode material for SOFCs, and the SSM55 represents the optimal concentration in SmxSr1-xMnO3 series. The remarkably high ORR activity of the SSM55 is ascribed to its high surface Mn4+/Mn3+ and Oad/Olattice ratios and fast surface oxygen exchange kinetics.

  14. High-Performanced Cathode with a Two-Layered R-P Structure for Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells.

    PubMed

    Huan, Daoming; Wang, Zhiquan; Wang, Zhenbin; Peng, Ranran; Xia, Changrong; Lu, Yalin

    2016-02-01

    Driven by the mounting concerns on global warming and energy crisis, intermediate temperature solid-oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs) have attracted special attention for their high fuel efficiency, low toxic gas emission, and great fuel flexibility. A key obstacle to the practical operation of IT-SOFCs is their sluggish oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) kinetics. In this work, we applied a new two-layered Ruddlesden-Popper (R-P) oxide, Sr3Fe2O7-δ (SFO), as the material for oxygen ion conducting IT-SOFCs. Density functional theory calculation suggested that SFO has extremely low oxygen ion formation energy and considerable energy barrier for O(2-) diffusion. Unfortunately, the stable SrO surface of SFO was demonstrated to be inert to O2 adsorption and dissociation reaction, and thus restricts its catalytic activity toward ORR. Based on this observation, Co partially substituted SFO (SFCO) was then synthesized and applied to improve its surface vacancy concentration to accelerate the oxygen adsorptive reduction reaction rate. Electrochemical performance results suggested that the cell using the SFCO single phase cathode has a peak power density of 685 mW cm(-2) at 650 °C, about 15% higher than those when using LSCF cathode. Operating at 200 mA cm(-2), the new cell using SFCO is quite stable within the 100-h' test.

  15. Evaluation of Ca3Co2O6 as cathode material for high-performance solid-oxide fuel cell

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Tao; Huang, Yun-Hui; Zeng, Rui; Yuan, Li-Xia; Hu, Xian-Luo; Zhang, Wu-Xing; Jiang, Long; Yang, Jun-You; Zhang, Zhao-Liang

    2013-01-01

    A cobalt-based thermoelectric compound Ca3Co2O6 (CCO) has been developed as new cathode material with superior performance for intermediate-temperature (IT) solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC). Systematic evaluation has been carried out. Measurement of thermal expansion coefficient (TEC), thermal-stress (σ) and interfacial shearing stress (τ) with the electrolyte show that CCO matches well with several commonly-used IT electrolytes. Maximum power density as high as 1.47 W cm−2 is attained at 800°C, and an additional thermoelectric voltage of 11.7 mV is detected. The superior electrochemical performance, thermoelectric effect, and comparable thermal and mechanical behaviors with the electrolytes make CCO to be a promising cathode material for SOFC. PMID:23350032

  16. Rational design of lower-temperature solid oxide fuel cell cathodes via nanotailoring of co-assembled composite structures.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kang Taek; Lidie, Ashley A; Yoon, Hee Sung; Wachsman, Eric D

    2014-12-01

    A novel in situ co-assembled nanocomposite LSM-Bi1.6 Er0.4 O3 (ESB) (icn-LSMESB) was obtained by conjugated wet-chemical synthesis. It showed an enhancement of the cathode polarization at 600 °C by >140 times relative to conventional LSM-Y0.08 Zr0.84 O1.92 (YSZ) cathodes and exceptional solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) performance of >2 W cm(-2) below 750 °C. This demonstrates that this novel cost-effective and broadly applicable process provides new opportunities for performance enhancement of energy storage and conversion devices by nanotailoring of composite electrodes.

  17. Optimization of a microbial fuel cell for wastewater treatment using recycled scrap metals as a cost-effective cathode material.

    PubMed

    Lefebvre, Olivier; Tan, Zi; Shen, Yujia; Ng, How Y

    2013-01-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) for wastewater treatment is still hindered by the prohibitive cost of cathode material, especially when platinum is used to catalyze oxygen reduction. In this study, recycled scrap metals could be used efficiently as cathode material in a specially-designed MFC. In terms of raw power, the scrap metals ranked as follows: W/Co > Cu/Ni > Inconel 718 > carpenter alloy; however, in terms of cost and long term stability, Inconel 718 was the preferred choice. Treatment performance--assessed on real and synthetic wastewater--was considerably improved either by filling the anode compartment with carbon granules or by operating the MFC in full-loop mode. The latter option allowed reaching 99.7% acetate removal while generating a maximum power of 36 W m(-3) at an acetate concentration of 2535 mg L(-1). Under these conditions, the energy produced by the system averaged 0.1 kWh m(-3) of wastewater treated.

  18. Zinc/air cell cathode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McEvoy, J. J.

    1986-04-01

    This invention relates to a cathode for an air depolarized cell in which the hydrophobic catalytic cathode contains or in integrally drophobi catalytic cathode contains or is integrally coated with, on the surface adjacent the cell separator, an absorbent material such as the gelling material used in the anode. The absorbent material, integrated with the cathode surface, adheres the separator to the cathode thereby preventing delamination and provides an electrolyte reservoir for the hydrophobic cathode.

  19. Simultaneous processes of electricity generation and ceftriaxone sodium degradation in an air-cathode single chamber microbial fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wen, Qing; Kong, Fanying; Zheng, Hongtao; Yin, Jinling; Cao, Dianxue; Ren, Yueming; Wang, Guiling

    2011-03-01

    A single chamber microbial fuel cell (MFC) with an air-cathode is successfully demonstrated using glucose-ceftriaxone sodium mixtures or ceftriaxone sodium as fuel. Results show that the ceftriaxone sodium can be biodegraded and produce electricity simultaneously. Interestingly, these ceftriaxone sodium-glucose mixtures play an active role in production of electricity. The maximum power density is increased in comparison to 1000 mg L-1 glucose (19 W m-3) by 495% for 50 mg L-1 ceftriaxone sodium + 1000 mg L-1 glucose (113 W m-3), while the maximum power density is 11 W m-3 using 50 mg L-1 ceftriaxone sodium as the sole fuel. Moreover, ceftriaxone sodium biodegradation rate reaches 91% within 24 h using the MFC in comparison with 51% using the traditional anaerobic reactor. These results indicate that some toxic and bio-refractory organics such as antibiotic wastewater might be suitable resources for electricity generation using the MFC technology.

  20. Fuel cell

    SciTech Connect

    Struthers, R.C.

    1983-06-28

    An improved fuel cell comprising an anode section including an anode terminal, an anode fuel, and an anolyte electrolyte, a cathode section including a cathode terminal, an electron distributor and a catholyte electrolyte, an ion exchange section between the anode and cathode sections and including an ionolyte electrolyte, ion transfer membranes separating the ionolyte from the anolyte and the catholyte and an electric circuit connected with and between the terminals conducting free electrons from the anode section and delivering free electrons to the cathode section, said ionolyte receives ions of one polarity moving from the anolyte through the membrane related thereto preventing chemical equilibrium in the anode section and sustaining chemical reaction and the generating of free electrons therein, said ions received by the ionolyte from the anolyte release different ions from the ionolyte which move through the membrane between the ionolyte and catholyte and which add to the catholyte.

  1. Application of Co-naphthalocyanine (CoNPc) as alternative cathode catalyst and support structure for microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jung Rae; Kim, Jy-Yeon; Han, Sang-Beom; Park, Kyung-Won; Saratale, G D; Oh, Sang-Eun

    2011-01-01

    Co-naphthalocyanine (CoNPc) was prepared by heat treatment for cathode catalysts to be used in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Four different catalysts (Carbon black, NPc/C, CoNPc/C, Pt/C) were compared and characterized using XPS, EDAX and TEM. The electrochemical characteristics of oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) were compared by cyclic voltammetry (CV) and linear sweep voltammetry (LSV). The Co-macrocyclic complex improves the catalyst dispersion and oxygen reduction reaction of CoNPc/C. The maximum power of CoNPc/C was 64.7 mW/m(2) at 0.25 mA as compared with 81.3 mW/m(2) of Pt/C, 29.7 mW/m(2) of NPc/C and 9.3 mW/m(2) of carbon black when the cathodes were implemented in H-type MFCs. The steady state cell, cathode and anode potential of MFC with using CoNPc/C were comparable to those of Pt/C.

  2. Impregnated Nd2NiO4+δ- scandia stabilized zirconia composite cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Ting; Zhou, Yucun; Yuan, Chun; Liu, Minquan; Meng, Xie; Zhan, Zhongliang; Xia, Changrong; Wang, Shaorong

    2014-12-01

    Here we developed a novel Nd2NiO4+δ (NNO) impregnated SSZ composite cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). The area specific polarization resistance of the composite cathode for oxygen reduction can be as low as 0.04 Ω cm2 at 800 °C. The anode supported SOFC with the structure of Ni-YSZ anode, SSZ electrolyte and impregnated NNO-SSZ composite cathode was prepared by the tape casting, co-firing and impregnation method. The resulting fuel cell exhibits maximum power densities of 1.26 and 0.73 W cm-2 at 800 and 700 °C, respectively when operated in hydrogen and air. Additionally, the electrical conductivity of the NNO cathode and the chemical compatibility with the electrolyte material were also studied.

  3. Synthesis and application of polypyrrole/carrageenan nano-bio composite as a cathode catalyst in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Esmaeili, Chakavak; Ghasemi, Mostafa; Heng, Lee Yook; Hassan, Sedky H A; Abdi, Mahnaz M; Daud, Wan Ramli Wan; Ilbeygi, Hamid; Ismail, Ahmad Fauzi

    2014-12-19

    A novel nano-bio composite polypyrrole (PPy)/kappa-carrageenan(KC) was fabricated and characterized for application as a cathode catalyst in a microbial fuel cell (MFC). High resolution SEM and TEM verified the bud-like shape and uniform distribution of the PPy in the KC matrix. X-ray diffraction (XRD) has approved the amorphous structure of the PPy/KC as well. The PPy/KC nano-bio composites were then studied as an electrode material, due to their oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) ability as the cathode catalyst in the MFC and the results were compared with platinum (Pt) as the most common cathode catalyst. The produced power density of the PPy/KC was 72.1 mW/m(2) while it was 46.8 mW/m(2) and 28.8 mW/m(2) for KC and PPy individually. The efficiency of the PPy/KC electrode system is slightly lower than a Pt electrode (79.9 mW/m(2)) but due to the high cost of Pt electrodes, the PPy/KC electrode system has potential to be an alternative electrode system for MFCs. PMID:25263889

  4. Potential of porous Co3O4 nanorods as cathode catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Ravinder; Singh, Lakhveer; Zularisam, A W; Hai, Faisal I

    2016-11-01

    This study aims to investigate the potential of porous Co3O4 nanorods as the cathode catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in aqueous air cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs). The porous Co3O4 nanorods were synthesized by a facile and cost-effective hydrothermal method. Three different concentrations (0.5mg/cm(2), 1mg/cm(2), and 2mg/cm(2)) of Co3O4 nanorods coated on graphite electrodes were used to test its performance in MFCs. The results showed that the addition of porous Co3O4 nanorods enhanced the electrocatalytic activity and ORR kinetics significantly and the overall resistance of the system was greatly reduced. Moreover, the MFC with a higher concentration of the catalyst achieved a maximum power density of 503±16mW/m(2), which was approximately five times higher than the bare graphite electrode. The improved catalytic activity of the cathodes could be due to the porous properties of Co3O4 nanorods that provided the higher number of active sites for oxygen.

  5. Synthesis and application of polypyrrole/carrageenan nano-bio composite as a cathode catalyst in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Esmaeili, Chakavak; Ghasemi, Mostafa; Heng, Lee Yook; Hassan, Sedky H A; Abdi, Mahnaz M; Daud, Wan Ramli Wan; Ilbeygi, Hamid; Ismail, Ahmad Fauzi

    2014-12-19

    A novel nano-bio composite polypyrrole (PPy)/kappa-carrageenan(KC) was fabricated and characterized for application as a cathode catalyst in a microbial fuel cell (MFC). High resolution SEM and TEM verified the bud-like shape and uniform distribution of the PPy in the KC matrix. X-ray diffraction (XRD) has approved the amorphous structure of the PPy/KC as well. The PPy/KC nano-bio composites were then studied as an electrode material, due to their oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) ability as the cathode catalyst in the MFC and the results were compared with platinum (Pt) as the most common cathode catalyst. The produced power density of the PPy/KC was 72.1 mW/m(2) while it was 46.8 mW/m(2) and 28.8 mW/m(2) for KC and PPy individually. The efficiency of the PPy/KC electrode system is slightly lower than a Pt electrode (79.9 mW/m(2)) but due to the high cost of Pt electrodes, the PPy/KC electrode system has potential to be an alternative electrode system for MFCs.

  6. Potential of porous Co3O4 nanorods as cathode catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Ravinder; Singh, Lakhveer; Zularisam, A W; Hai, Faisal I

    2016-11-01

    This study aims to investigate the potential of porous Co3O4 nanorods as the cathode catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in aqueous air cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs). The porous Co3O4 nanorods were synthesized by a facile and cost-effective hydrothermal method. Three different concentrations (0.5mg/cm(2), 1mg/cm(2), and 2mg/cm(2)) of Co3O4 nanorods coated on graphite electrodes were used to test its performance in MFCs. The results showed that the addition of porous Co3O4 nanorods enhanced the electrocatalytic activity and ORR kinetics significantly and the overall resistance of the system was greatly reduced. Moreover, the MFC with a higher concentration of the catalyst achieved a maximum power density of 503±16mW/m(2), which was approximately five times higher than the bare graphite electrode. The improved catalytic activity of the cathodes could be due to the porous properties of Co3O4 nanorods that provided the higher number of active sites for oxygen. PMID:27614156

  7. Hollow-spherical Co/N-C nanoparticle as an efficient electrocatalyst used in air cathode microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Yang, Tingting; Li, Kexun; Pu, Liangtao; Liu, Ziqi; Ge, Baochao; Pan, Yajun; Liu, Ying

    2016-12-15

    The hollow-spherical Co/N-C nanoparticle, which is synthesized via a simple hydrothermal reaction followed by heat treatment, is firstly used as electrocatalyst for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC). The maximum power density of MFC with 10% Co/N-C air-cathode is as high as 2514±59mWm(-2), which is almost 174% higher than the control. The exchange current density (i0) of cathode equipped with 10% Co/N-C is 238% higher than that of untreated AC. While the total resistance of treated samples decreases from 13.017 to 10.255Ω. The intensity ratio of Raman D to G band (ID/IG) decreases from 0.93 (N-C) to 0.73 (Co/N-C), indicating the catalyst forms graphite structure. Both XRD and XPS testify that Co is bonded to N within graphitic sheets and serves as the active sites in ORR. The four-electron pathway of the Co/N-C also plays a crucial role in electrochemical catalytic activity. As a result, it can be expected that the as-synthesized Co/N-C, with extraordinary electro-catalytic performance towards ORR, will be a promising alternative to the state-of-the-art non-precious metal ORR electro-catalysts for electrochemical energy applications.

  8. Facile electrochemical polymerization of polypyrrole film applied as cathode material in dual rotating disk photo fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Kan; Zhang, Hongbo; Tang, Tiantian; Tang, Yanping; Wang, Yalin; Jia, Jinping

    2016-08-01

    Polypyrrole (PPy) film is synthesized on Ti substrate through electrochemical polymerization method and is applied as cathode material in a TiO2 NTs-PPy dual rotating disk photo fuel cell (PFC). The optimized PPy electrochemical polymerization is carried out using linear sweep voltammetry from 0 V to 1.2 V (vs. SCE) with scan rate of 0.1 V s-1, 100 circles. Sixty milliliter real textile wastewater with the initial COD and conductivity of 408 ± 6 mgO2 L-1 and 20180 μS cm-1 is treated in this PFC under UV irradiation. About 0.46 V open-circuit voltage (VOC) and 1.8-2.2 mA short-circuit current (JSC) are obtained. Due to the effective electron-hole separation effect, the COD removal rate is as high as 0.0055 min-1. Stable current and COD removal can be obtained at different output voltage. Two influence factors including rotating speed and pH are investigated. Better electricity generation performance and COD removal activity are achieved at high rotating speed and in acidic condition. In comparison with platinized cathode, though VOC is lower, similar JSC is measured. Considering the high cost of Pt, PPy is a promising alternative cathode material in PFC that can also generate electricity efficiently and stably.

  9. Facile electrochemical polymerization of polypyrrole film applied as cathode material in dual rotating disk photo fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Kan; Zhang, Hongbo; Tang, Tiantian; Tang, Yanping; Wang, Yalin; Jia, Jinping

    2016-08-01

    Polypyrrole (PPy) film is synthesized on Ti substrate through electrochemical polymerization method and is applied as cathode material in a TiO2 NTs-PPy dual rotating disk photo fuel cell (PFC). The optimized PPy electrochemical polymerization is carried out using linear sweep voltammetry from 0 V to 1.2 V (vs. SCE) with scan rate of 0.1 V s-1, 100 circles. Sixty milliliter real textile wastewater with the initial COD and conductivity of 408 ± 6 mgO2 L-1 and 20180 μS cm-1 is treated in this PFC under UV irradiation. About 0.46 V open-circuit voltage (VOC) and 1.8-2.2 mA short-circuit current (JSC) are obtained. Due to the effective electron-hole separation effect, the COD removal rate is as high as 0.0055 min-1. Stable current and COD removal can be obtained at different output voltage. Two influence factors including rotating speed and pH are investigated. Better electricity generation performance and COD removal activity are achieved at high rotating speed and in acidic condition. In comparison with platinized cathode, though VOC is lower, similar JSC is measured. Considering the high cost of Pt, PPy is a promising alternative cathode material in PFC that can also generate electricity efficiently and stably.

  10. Fuel cell with internal flow control

    SciTech Connect

    Haltiner, Jr., Karl J.; Venkiteswaran, Arun

    2012-06-12

    A fuel cell stack is provided with a plurality of fuel cell cassettes where each fuel cell cassette has a fuel cell with an anode and cathode. The fuel cell stack includes an anode supply chimney for supplying fuel to the anode of each fuel cell cassette, an anode return chimney for removing anode exhaust from the anode of each fuel cell cassette, a cathode supply chimney for supplying oxidant to the cathode of each fuel cell cassette, and a cathode return chimney for removing cathode exhaust from the cathode of each fuel cell cassette. A first fuel cell cassette includes a flow control member disposed between the anode supply chimney and the anode return chimney or between the cathode supply chimney and the cathode return chimney such that the flow control member provides a flow restriction different from at least one other fuel cell cassettes.

  11. Active water management at the cathode of a planar air-breathing polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell using an electroosmotic pump

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fabian, T.; O'Hayre, R.; Litster, S.; Prinz, F. B.; Santiago, J. G.

    In a typical air-breathing fuel cell design, ambient air is supplied to the cathode by natural convection and dry hydrogen is supplied to a dead-ended anode. While this design is simple and attractive for portable low-power applications, the difficulty in implementing effective and robust water management presents disadvantages. In particular, excessive flooding of the open-cathode during long-term operation can lead to a dramatic reduction of fuel cell power. To overcome this limitation, we report here on a novel air-breathing fuel cell water management design based on a hydrophilic and electrically conductive wick in conjunction with an electroosmotic (EO) pump that actively pumps water out of the wick. Transient experiments demonstrate the ability of the EO-pump to "resuscitate" the fuel cell from catastrophic flooding events, while longer term galvanostatic measurements suggest that the design can completely eliminate cathode flooding using less than 2% of fuel cell power, and lead to stable operation with higher net power performance than a control design without EO-pump. This demonstrates that active EO-pump water management, which has previously only been demonstrated in forced-convection fuel cell systems, can also be applied effectively to miniaturized (<5 W) air-breathing fuel cell systems.

  12. Exploratory fuel-cell research: I. Direct-hydrocarbon polymer-electrolyte fuel cell. II. Mathematical modeling of fuel-cell cathodes

    SciTech Connect

    Perry, M.L.; McLarnon, F.R.; Newman, J.S.; Cairns, E.J.

    1996-12-01

    A strong need exists today for more efficient energy-conversion systems. Our reliance on limited fuel resources, such as petroleum for the majority of our energy needs makes it imperative that we utilize these resources as efficiently as possible. Higher-efficiency energy conversion also means less pollution, since less fuel is consumed and less exhaust created for the same energy output. Additionally, for many industrialized nations, such as the United States which must rely on petroleum imports, it is also imperative from a national-security standpoint to reduce the consumption of these precious resources. A substantial reduction of U.S. oil imports would result in a significant reduction of our trade deficit, as well as costly military spending to protect overseas petroleum resources. Therefore, energy-conversion devices which may utilize alternative fuels are also in strong demand. This paper describes research on fuel cells for transportation.

  13. Triple-conducting layered perovskites as cathode materials for proton-conducting solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Junyoung; Sengodan, Sivaprakash; Kwon, Goeun; Ding, Dong; Shin, Jeeyoung; Liu, Meilin; Kim, Guntae

    2014-10-01

    We report on an excellent anode-supported H(+) -SOFC material system using a triple conducting (H(+) /O(2-) /e(-) ) oxide (TCO) as a cathode material for H(+) -SOFCs. Generally, mixed ionic (O(2-) ) and electronic conductors (MIECs) have been selected as the cathode material of H(+) -SOFCs. In an H(+) -SOFC system, however, MIEC cathodes limit the electrochemically active sites to the interface between the proton conducting electrolyte and the cathode. New approaches to the tailoring of cathode materials for H(+) -SOFCs should therefore be considered. TCOs can effectively extend the electrochemically active sites from the interface between the cathode and the electrolyte to the entire surface of the cathode. The electrochemical performance of NBSCF/BZCYYb/BZCYYb-NiO shows excellent long term stability for 500 h at 1023 K with high power density of 1.61 W cm(-2) .

  14. Electricity generation and nutrients removal from high-strength liquid manure by air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Lin, Hongjian; Wu, Xiao; Nelson, Chad; Miller, Curtis; Zhu, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are widely tested to recover electrical energy from waste streams containing organic matter. When high-strength wastewater, such as liquid animal manure, is used as a medium, inhibition on anode and cathode catalysts potentially impairs the effectiveness of MFC performance in power generation and pollutant removal. This study evaluated possible inhibitive effects of liquid swine manure components on MFC power generation, improved liquid manure-fed MFCs performance by pretreatment (dilution and selective adsorption), and modeled the kinetics of organic matter and nutrients removal kinetics. Parameters monitored included pH, conductivity, chemical oxygen demand (COD), volatile fatty acids (VFAs), total ammoniacal nitrogen (TAN), nitrite, nitrate, and phosphate concentrations. The removals of VFA and TAN were efficient, indicated by the short half-life times of 4.99 and 7.84 d, respectively. The mechanism for phosphate decrease was principally the salt precipitation on cathode, but the removal was incomplete after 42-d operation. MFC with an external resistor of 2.2 kΩ and fed with swine wastewater generated relatively small power (28.2 μW), energy efficiency (0.37%) and Coulombic efficiency (1.5%). Dilution of swine wastewater dramatically improved the power generation as the inhibitory effect was decreased. Zeolite and granular activated carbon were effective in the selective adsorption of ammonia or organic matter in swine wastewater, and so substantially improved the power generation, energy efficiency, and Coulombic efficiency. A smaller external resistor in the circuit was also observed to promote the organic matter degradation and thus to shorten the treatment time. Overall, air-cathode MFCs are promising for generating electrical power from livestock wastewater and meanwhile reducing the level of organic matter and nutrients.

  15. Electricity generation and nutrients removal from high-strength liquid manure by air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Lin, Hongjian; Wu, Xiao; Nelson, Chad; Miller, Curtis; Zhu, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are widely tested to recover electrical energy from waste streams containing organic matter. When high-strength wastewater, such as liquid animal manure, is used as a medium, inhibition on anode and cathode catalysts potentially impairs the effectiveness of MFC performance in power generation and pollutant removal. This study evaluated possible inhibitive effects of liquid swine manure components on MFC power generation, improved liquid manure-fed MFCs performance by pretreatment (dilution and selective adsorption), and modeled the kinetics of organic matter and nutrients removal kinetics. Parameters monitored included pH, conductivity, chemical oxygen demand (COD), volatile fatty acids (VFAs), total ammoniacal nitrogen (TAN), nitrite, nitrate, and phosphate concentrations. The removals of VFA and TAN were efficient, indicated by the short half-life times of 4.99 and 7.84 d, respectively. The mechanism for phosphate decrease was principally the salt precipitation on cathode, but the removal was incomplete after 42-d operation. MFC with an external resistor of 2.2 kΩ and fed with swine wastewater generated relatively small power (28.2 μW), energy efficiency (0.37%) and Coulombic efficiency (1.5%). Dilution of swine wastewater dramatically improved the power generation as the inhibitory effect was decreased. Zeolite and granular activated carbon were effective in the selective adsorption of ammonia or organic matter in swine wastewater, and so substantially improved the power generation, energy efficiency, and Coulombic efficiency. A smaller external resistor in the circuit was also observed to promote the organic matter degradation and thus to shorten the treatment time. Overall, air-cathode MFCs are promising for generating electrical power from livestock wastewater and meanwhile reducing the level of organic matter and nutrients. PMID:26654000

  16. Au@BICUVOX10 composite cathode for novel structure low-temperature solid-oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Tao; Li, Fan; Xia, Dingguo

    A composite Au@Bi 2Cu 0.1V 0.9O 5.35 (BICUVOX10) cathode is prepared and tested as a ceramal electrode for use in low-temperature solid-oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). Au powder is coated onto the surface of BICUVOX10 from an aqueous solution of the chloride with NaBH 4 as a reductant. The valence of the surface Au is identified as Au(0) by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The BICUVOX10 substrate is synthesized from V 2O 3, CuO, and Bi 2O 3 and then investigated by field-emission scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The average size of the particles is estimated to be 100 nm after milling with a planetary ball-mill. The core-shell structure of Au@BICUVOX10 is confirmed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The two-dimensional coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) and the conductivities of mixed powders with different proportions of Au is also tested from room temperature to 600 °C. A single fuel cell is fabricated with Au@BICUVOX10 as the cathode, NiO/GDC (Gd 0.1Ce 0.9O 1.95) as the supporting anode, and GDC as the electrolyte. The electrochemical performance is tested and the highest power densities of the fuel cell are determined to be 127, 206, 359, 469, and 474 mW cm -2 at 450, 500, 525, 550, and 575 °C, respectively. Finally, the stability of the single SOFC is tested, whereupon it is found that its output is maintained for at least the first 20 h.

  17. Nb doped TiO2 as a Cathode Catalyst Support Material for Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Toole, Alexander W.

    In order to reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases and reduce dependence on the use of fossil fuels, it is necessary to pursue alternative sources of energy. Transportation is a major contributor to the emission of greenhouse gases due to the use of fossil fuels in the internal combustion engine. To reduce emission of these pollutants into the atmosphere, research is needed to produce alternative solutions for vehicle transportation. Low temperature polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells are energy conversion devices that provide an alternative to the internal combustion engine, however, they still have obstacles to overcome to achieve large scale implementation. T he following work presents original research with regards to the development of Nb doped TiO2 as a cathode catalyst support material for low temperature polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells. The development of a new process to synthesize nanoparticles of Nb doped TiO2 with controlled compositions is presented as well as methods to scale up the process and optimize the synthesis for the aforementioned application. In addition to this, comparison of both electrochemical activity and durability with current state of the art Pt on high surface area carbon black (Vulcan XC-72) is investigated. Effects of the strong metal-support interaction on the electrochemical behavior of these materials is also observed and discussed.

  18. Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells Employing Heteropolyacids as Redox Mediators for Oxygen Reduction Reactions: Pt-Free Cathode Systems.

    PubMed

    Matsui, Toshiaki; Morikawa, Eri; Nakada, Shintaro; Okanishi, Takeou; Muroyama, Hiroki; Hirao, Yoshifumi; Takahashi, Tsuyoshi; Eguchi, Koichi

    2016-07-20

    In this study, the heteropolyacids of H3+xPVxMO12-xO40 (x = 0, 2, and 3) were applied as redox mediators for the oxygen reduction reaction in polymer electrolyte fuel cells, of which the cathode is free from the usage of noble metals such as Pt/C. In this system, the electrochemical reduction of heteropolyacid over the carbon cathode and the subsequent reoxidation of the partially reduced heteropolyacid by exposure to the dissolved oxygen in the regenerator are important processes for continuous power generation. Thus, the redox properties of catholytes containing these heteropolyacids were investigated in detail. The substitution quantity of V in the heteropolyacid affected the onset reduction potential as well as the reduction current density, resulting in a difference in cell performance. The chemical composition of heteropolyacid also had a significant impact on the reoxidation property. Among the three compounds, H6PV3Mo9O40 was the most suitable redox mediator. Furthermore, the pH of the catholyte was found to be the crucial factor in determining the reoxidation rate of partially reduced heteropolyacid as well as cell performance.

  19. Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells Employing Heteropolyacids as Redox Mediators for Oxygen Reduction Reactions: Pt-Free Cathode Systems.

    PubMed

    Matsui, Toshiaki; Morikawa, Eri; Nakada, Shintaro; Okanishi, Takeou; Muroyama, Hiroki; Hirao, Yoshifumi; Takahashi, Tsuyoshi; Eguchi, Koichi

    2016-07-20

    In this study, the heteropolyacids of H3+xPVxMO12-xO40 (x = 0, 2, and 3) were applied as redox mediators for the oxygen reduction reaction in polymer electrolyte fuel cells, of which the cathode is free from the usage of noble metals such as Pt/C. In this system, the electrochemical reduction of heteropolyacid over the carbon cathode and the subsequent reoxidation of the partially reduced heteropolyacid by exposure to the dissolved oxygen in the regenerator are important processes for continuous power generation. Thus, the redox properties of catholytes containing these heteropolyacids were investigated in detail. The substitution quantity of V in the heteropolyacid affected the onset reduction potential as well as the reduction current density, resulting in a difference in cell performance. The chemical composition of heteropolyacid also had a significant impact on the reoxidation property. Among the three compounds, H6PV3Mo9O40 was the most suitable redox mediator. Furthermore, the pH of the catholyte was found to be the crucial factor in determining the reoxidation rate of partially reduced heteropolyacid as well as cell performance. PMID:27348019

  20. Electricity generation of microbial fuel cell with waterproof breathable membrane cathode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xing, Defeng; Tang, Yu; Mei, Xiaoxue; Liu, Bingfeng

    2015-12-01

    Simplification of fabrication and reduction of capital cost are important for scale-up and application of microbial electrochemical systems (MES). A fast and inexpensive method of making cathode was developed via assembling stainless steel mesh (SSM) with waterproof breathable membrane (WBM). Three assemble types of cathodes were fabricated; Pt@SSM/WBM (SSM as cathode skeleton, WBM as diffusion layer, platinum (Pt) catalyst applied on SSM), SSM/Pt@WBM and Pt@WBM. SSM/Pt@WBM cathode showed relatively preferable with long-term stability and favorable power output (24.7 W/m3). Compared to conventional cathode fabrication, air-cathode was made for 0.5 h. The results indicated that the novel fabrication method could remarkably reduce capital cost and simplify fabrication procedures with a comparable power output, making MFC more prospective for future application.

  1. Core-Protected Platinum Monolayer Shell High-Stability Electrocatalysts for Fuel-Cell Cathodes

    SciTech Connect

    Adzic, R.R.; Sasaki, K.; Naohara, H.; Cai, Y.; Choi, Y.M.; Liu, P.; Vukmirovic, M.B.; Wang, J.X.

    2010-11-08

    More than skin deep: Platinum monolayers can act as shells for palladium nanoparticles to lead to electrocatalysts with high activities and an ultralow platinum content, but high platinum utilization. The stability derives from the core protecting the shell from dissolution. In fuel-cell tests, no loss of platinum was observed in 200?000 potential cycles, whereas loss of palladium was significant.

  2. Core-Protected Platinum Monolayer Shell High-Stability Electrocatalysts for Fuel-Cell Cathodes

    SciTech Connect

    K Sasaki; H Naohara; Y Cai; Y Choi; P Liu; M Vukmirovic; J Wang; R Adzic

    2011-12-31

    Platinum monolayers can act as shells for palladium nanoparticles to lead to electrocatalysts with high activities and an ultralow platinum content, but high platinum utilization. The stability derives from the core protecting the shell from dissolution. In fuel-cell tests, no loss of platinum was observed in 200,000 potential cycles, whereas loss of palladium was significant.

  3. Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Cathodes. Unraveling the Relationship Between Structure, Surface Chemistry and Oxygen Reduction

    SciTech Connect

    Gopalan, Srikanth

    2013-03-31

    In this work we have considered oxygen reduction reaction on LSM and LSCF cathode materials. In particular we have used various spectroscopic techniques to explore the surface composition, transition metal oxidation state, and the bonding environment of oxygen to understand the changes that occur to the surface during the oxygen reduction process. In a parallel study we have employed patterned cathodes of both LSM and LSCF cathodes to extract transport and kinetic parameters associated with the oxygen reduction process.

  4. Kinetics of oxygen reduction in perovskite cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells: A combined modeling and experimental approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miara, Lincoln James

    Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) have the potential to replace conventional stationary power generation technologies; however, there are major obstacles to commercialization, the most problematic of which is poor cathode performance. Commercialization of SOFCs will follow when the mechanisms occurring at the cathode are more thoroughly understood and adapted for market use. The catalytic reduction of oxygen occurring in SOFC cathodes consists of many elementary steps such as gas phase diffusion, chemical and/or electrochemical reactions which lead to the adsorption and dissociation of molecular oxygen onto the cathode surface, mass transport of oxygen species along the surface and/or through the bulk of the cathode, and full reduction and incorporation of the oxygen at the cathode/electrolyte two or three phase boundary. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) is the main technique used to identify the occurrence of these different processes, but when this technique is used without an explicit model describing the kinetics it is difficult to unravel the interdependence of each of these processes. The purpose of this dissertation is to identify the heterogeneous reactions occurring at the cathode of an SOFC by combining experimental EIS results with mathematical models describing the time dependent behavior of the system. This analysis is performed on two different systems. In the first case, experimental EIS results from patterned half cells composed of Ca-doped lanthanum manganite (LCM)| yttria-doped ZrO2 (YSZ) are modeled to investigate the temperature and partial pressure of oxygen, pO2, dependence of oxygen adsorption/dissociation onto the LCM surface, surface diffusion of atomic oxygen, and electrochemical reduction and incorporation of the oxygen into the electrolyte in the vicinity of the triple phase boundary (TPB). This model determines the time-independent state-space equations from which the Faradaic admittance transfer function is obtained. The

  5. Iron-rich nanoparticle encapsulated, nitrogen doped porous carbon materials as efficient cathode electrocatalyst for microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Guolong; Zhu, Youlong; Lu, Lu; Xu, Kongliang; Wang, Heming; Jin, Yinghua; Jason Ren, Zhiyong; Liu, Zhenning; Zhang, Wei

    2016-05-01

    Developing efficient, readily available, and sustainable electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in neutral medium is of great importance to practical applications of microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Herein, a porous nitrogen-doped carbon material with encapsulated Fe-based nanoparticles (Fe-Nx/C) has been developed and utilized as an efficient ORR catalyst in MFCs. The material was obtained through pyrolysis of a highly porous organic polymer containing iron(II) porphyrins. The characterizations of morphology, crystalline structure and elemental composition reveal that Fe-Nx/C consists of well-dispersed Fe-based nanoparticles coated by N-doped graphitic carbon layer. ORR catalytic performance of Fe-Nx/C has been evaluated through cyclic voltammetry and rotating ring-disk electrode measurements, and its application as a cathode electrocatalyst in an air-cathode single-chamber MFC has been investigated. Fe-Nx/C exhibits comparable or better performance in MFCs than 20% Pt/C, displaying higher cell voltage (601 mV vs. 591 mV), maximum power density (1227 mW m-2 vs. 1031 mW m-2) and Coulombic efficiency (50% vs. 31%). These findings indicate that Fe-Nx/C is more tolerant and durable than Pt/C in a system with bacteria metabolism and thus holds great potential for practical MFC applications.

  6. Post-mortem analysis of a long-term tested proton exchange membrane fuel cell stack under low cathode humidification conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Nam-In; Seo, Yongho; Kim, Ki Buem; Lee, Naesung; Lee, Jin-Hwa; Song, Inseob; Choi, Hanshin; Park, Jun-Young

    2014-05-01

    During continuous power operation for 2740 h, the major mechanisms and patterns of performance degradation in a polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) stack are investigated under low cathode humidification with simulated reformate fuel gases through the use of various physicochemical and electrochemical analysis tools. As operating time increases, the operating voltages and open-circuit voltages (OCVs) of the stack decrease with the large voltage distributions. In the post-mortem analysis of the stack, the delamination of the catalyst layer (CL) of unstable operating membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs) is significant near the cathode gas inlets. This observation is in agreement with the results of OCV, hydrogen crossover current, and anode off-gas measurements. This phenomenon may be due to the acceleration of carbon corrosion in the cathode during the frequent start-up and shut-down process, because the local cathode potential can reach more than 1.5 V in the air/fuel boundary. Additionally, the frequent membrane hydration and dehydration by the accumulation of excess water (through electrochemical reaction) and faster water evaporation (under dry-air cathode conditions and high operating temperatures) may accelerate the interface delamination between the membrane and cathode CL with a substantially uneven distribution of water.

  7. LaNi1-xCoxO3-δ (x=0.4 to 0.7) cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells by infiltration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chrzan, Aleksander; Ovtar, Simona; Chen, Ming

    2016-01-01

    Performance of LaNi1-xCoxO3-δ (LNC) (x=0.4 to 0.7) as a cathode in solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) is evaluated. Symmetrical cathode/electrolyte/cathode cells for electrochemical testing are prepared by infiltration of yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) backbone with LNC solutions. It is showed that the cathode infiltrated with LaNi0.5Co0.5O3-δ (LNC155) has the lowest polarization resistance and activation energy, 197 mΩ cm2 at 600 °C and 0.91 eV, respectively. Therefore it is the most promising material of the LNC group for electrochemical applications. X-ray diffraction analysis revealed that none of the materials is single-phased after heat treatment at 800 °C as they contain residues of La2O3 and La2NiO4-δ

  8. Proton Emission Membrane (PEM) Fuel Cell Stack Power Generation Using Cathode Humidification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erikpara, Jolomi

    The replacement of the power source for stationary and aeronautic applications with alternative energy source has been the subject of countless research. The Proton Exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) has been one of the most promising alternatives because of its quick start up advantages, portability, and quietness of operation with an ability to generate several kilowatts of power. In the short term, this power source can be employed to meet different energy needs and power a medium size Unpiloted Aerial Vehicle (UAV). Fuel Cells can also be applied as a source of emergency power needs for aeronautical applications. In the presence of all these advantages, the power optimization of the PEMFC system has been greatly inhibited by the water and heat generated as by-products of the electrochemical reactions. The operational parameters like pressure, temperature and relative humidity; have been shown to influence the overall water content of the cell and also improve the power generation through improved current density output. This research is aimed at improving the power generation of low temperature (< 100°C) fuel cells through the use of optimal operational parameters and electrode humidity control to mitigate the water effect within the cell. The effects of these processes were investigated with a two cell stack and the results compared with other laboratory experiments showed a power improvement of 0.4Watts using the method employed by this research. The same approach was employed on a 4-cell stack, and an improvement above 369Watts as given by present water management technique was achieved. Maximum power output of 382W was achieved at 0.45V from the 4-cell stack before mass transport limitations were reached.

  9. Three-dimensional X-ray microcomputed tomography of carbonates and biofilm on operated cathode in single chamber microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Santini, Maurizio; Guilizzoni, Manfredo; Lorenzi, Massimo; Atanassov, Plamen; Marsili, Enrico; Fest-Santini, Stephanie; Cristiani, Pierangela; Santoro, Carlo

    2015-09-10

    Power output limitation is one of the main concerns that need to be addressed for full-scale applications of the microbial fuel cell technology. Fouling and biofilm growth on the cathode of single chamber microbial fuel cells (SCMFC) affects their performance in long-term operation with wastewater. In this study, the authors report the power output and cathode polarization curves of a membraneless SCMFC, fed with raw primary wastewater and sodium acetate for over 6 months. At the end of the experiment, the whole cathode surface is analyzed through X-ray microcomputed tomography (microCT), scanning electron microscopy, and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) to characterize the fouling layer and the biofilm. EDX shows the distribution of Ca, Na, K, P, S, and other elements on the two faces of the cathode. Na-carbonates and Ca-carbonates are predominant on the air (outer) side and the water (inner) side, respectively. The three-dimensional reconstruction by X-ray microCT shows biofilm spots unevenly distributed above the Ca-carbonate layer on the inner (water) side of the cathode. These results indicate that carbonates layer, rather than biofilm, might lower the oxygen reduction reaction rate at the cathode during long-term SCMFC operation.

  10. Cyclic oxidation of Mn-Co spinel coated SUS 430 alloy in the cathodic atmosphere of solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hua, Bin; Pu, Jian; Gong, Wei; Zhang, Jianfu; Lu, Fengshuang; Jian, Li

    In order to improve oxidation resistance and long-term stability of the metallic interconnects and prevent the cathode of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) from Cr-poisoning, an effective, relatively dense and well adherent Mn-Co spinel protection coating with a nominal composition of MnCo 2O 4 is applied onto the surfaces of the SUS 430 ferritic stainless steel by a cost-effective sol-gel process. The long-term thermally cyclic oxidation kinetics and oxide scale structures as well as the composition of the coated SUS 430 alloy are investigated. The Mn-Co spinel protection layer demonstrates an excellent structural and thermomechanical stability, and effectively acts as a mass barrier to the outward diffusion of cations, especially Cr, and a lowered parabolic rate constant of k p = 1.951 × 10 -15 g 2 cm -4 s -1 is obtained.

  11. To alloy or not to alloy? Cr modified Pt/C cathode catalysts for PEM fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wells, Peter P; Qian, Yangdong; King, Colin R; Wiltshire, Richard J K; Crabb, Eleanor M; Smart, Lesley E; Thompsett, David; Russell, Andrea E

    2008-01-01

    The cathode electrocatalysts for proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells are commonly platinum and platinum based alloy nanoparticles dispersed on a carbon support. Control over the particle size and composition has, historically, been attained empirically, making systematic studies of the effects of various structural parameters difficult. The controlled surface modification methodology used in this work has enabled the controlled modification of carbon supported Pt nanoparticles by Cr so as to yield nanoalloy particles with defined compositions. Subsequent heat treatment in 5% H2 in N2 resulted in the formation of a distinct Pt3Cr alloy phase which was either restricted to the surface of the particles or present throughout the bulk of the particle structure. Measurement of the oxygen reduction activity of the catalysts was accomplished using the rotating thin film electrode method and the activities obtained were related to the structure of the nanoalloy catalyst particles, largely determined using Cr K edge and Pt L3 edge XAS.

  12. Cathode material for electrochemical cells

    SciTech Connect

    Ryan, D.M.

    1993-08-24

    A primary cell is described having an anode material, an electrolyte material and a cathode material, wherein said cathode material, in the predischarge condition thereof, is K[sub 3]V[sub 5]O[sub 14].

  13. TiO2 nanotubes as alternative cathode in microbial fuel cells: Effect of annealing treatment on its performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yahia, S. Ait Ali; Hamadou, L.; Salar-García, M. J.; Kadri, A.; Ortiz-Martínez, V. M.; Hernández-Fernández, F. J.; de los Rios, A. Pérez; Benbrahim, N.

    2016-11-01

    In the present work, amorphous and crystalline TiO2 nanotubes (TiNT) were fabricated via anodization and characterized as an alternative cathode for Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs). The morphology of TiNT is characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The crystalline structure and chemical composition are examined by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX). The electrical conductivity characteristics were examined by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). MFCs based on the alternative cathodes were evaluated in terms of energy generation and wastewater treatment. The performances of the as-anodized nanotubes and TiNT annealed at 450 °C and at 550 °C were investigated in double-chamber MFCs with carbon rod and graphite granules as anode and polymer inclusion membrane based on ionic liquid as separator. Industrial wastewater was the source of carbon and inoculum for the experiments. The as grown amorphous nanotubes exhibited the best output power density of 15.16 mWm-2. The results reported here indicate that the specific surface area and the oxygen vacancies of the TiNT cathode can influence the MFCs performance together, because both factors play crucial role in the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). As-anodized TiNT, due to its higher specific surface provide more active sites for electrode reactions. The final oxygen demand (COD) for all systems achieved a COD removal within the interval 54-71% after 10 days. This approved the suitability of MFCs for wastewater treatment.

  14. Improvement of cathode-electrolyte interfaces of tubular solid oxide fuel cells by fabricating dense YSZ electrolyte membranes with indented surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Dehua; Liu, Mingfei; Xie, Kui; Sheng, Jin; Wang, Yonghong; Peng, Xiaobo; Liu, Xingqin; Meng, Guangyao

    To improve cathode-electrolyte interfaces of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), dense YSZ electrolyte membranes with indented surfaces were fabricated on tubular NiO/YSZ anode supports by two comparable methods. Electrochemistry impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and current-voltage tests of the cells were carried out to characterize the cathode-electrolyte interfaces. Results showed that the electrode polarization resistances of the modified cells were reduced by 52% and 35% at 700 °C, and the maximum power densities of cells were remarkably increased, even by 146.6% and 117.8% at lower temperature (700 °C), respectively. The indented surfaces extended the active zone of cathode and enhanced interfacial adhesion, which led to the major improvement in the cell performance.

  15. Spatial distribution of bacterial communities on volumetric and planar anodes in single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Vargas, Ignacio T; Albert, Istvan U; Regan, John M

    2013-11-01

    Pyrosequencing was used to characterize bacterial communities in air-cathode microbial fuel cells across a volumetric (graphite fiber brush) and a planar (carbon cloth) anode, where different physical and chemical gradients would be expected associated with the distance between anode location and the air cathode. As expected, the stable operational voltage and the coulombic efficiency (CE) were higher for the volumetric anode than the planar anode (0.57 V and CE = 22% vs. 0.51 V and CE = 12%). The genus Geobacter was the only known exoelectrogen among the observed dominant groups, comprising 57 ± 4% of recovered sequences for the brush and 27 ± 5% for the carbon-cloth anode. While the bacterial communities differed between the two anode materials, results showed that Geobacter spp. and other dominant bacterial groups were homogenously distributed across both planar and volumetric anodes. This lends support to previous community analysis interpretations based on a single biofilm sampling location in these systems. PMID:23616357

  16. Bio-inspired Construction of Advanced Fuel Cell Cathode with Pt Anchored in Ordered Hybrid Polymer Matrix

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Zhangxun; Wang, Suli; Jiang, Luhua; Sun, Hai; Liu, Shuang; Fu, Xudong; Zhang, Bingsen; Sheng Su, Dang; Wang, Jianqiang; Sun, Gongquan

    2015-01-01

    The significant use of platinum for catalyzing the cathodic oxygen reduction reactions (ORRs) has hampered the widespread use of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). The construction of well-defined electrode architecture in nanoscale with enhanced utilization and catalytic performance of Pt might be a promising approach to address such barrier. Inspired by the highly efficient catalytic processes in enzymes with active centers embedded in charge transport pathways, here we demonstrate for the first time a design that allocates platinum nanoparticles (Pt NPs) at the boundaries with dual-functions of conducting both electrons by aid of polypyrrole and protons via Nafion® ionomer within hierarchical nanoarrays. By mimicking enzymes functionally, an impressive ORR activity and stability is achieved. Using this brand new electrode architecture as the cathode and the anode of a PEMFC, a high mass specific power density of 5.23 W mg−1Pt is achieved, with remarkable durability. These improvements are ascribed to not only the electron decoration and the anchoring effects from the Nafion® ionomer decorated PPy substrate to the supported Pt NPs, but also the fast charge and mass transport facilitated by the electron and proton pathways within the electrode architecture. PMID:26537781

  17. Cobalt based layered perovskites as cathode material for intermediate temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: A brief review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelosato, Renato; Cordaro, Giulio; Stucchi, Davide; Cristiani, Cinzia; Dotelli, Giovanni

    2015-12-01

    Nowadays, the cathode is the most studied component in Intermediate Temperature-Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (IT-SOFCs). Decreasing SOFCs operating temperature implies slow oxygen reduction kinetics and large polarization losses. Double perovskites with general formula REBaCo2O5+δ are promising mixed ionic-electronic conductors, offering a remarkable enhancement of the oxygen diffusivity and surface exchange respect to disordered perovskites. In this review, more than 250 compositions investigated in the literature were analyzed. The evaluation was performed in terms of electrical conductivity, Area Specific Resistance (ASR), chemical compatibility with electrolytes and Thermal Expansion Coefficient (TEC). The most promising materials have been identified as those bearing the mid-sized rare earths (Pr, Nd, Sm, Gd). Doping strategies have been analyzed: Sr doping on A site promotes higher electrical conductivity, but worsen ASR and TECs; B-site doping (Fe, Ni, Mn) helps lowering TECs, but is detrimental for the electrochemical properties. A promising boost of the electrochemical activity is obtained by simply introducing a slight Ba under-stoichiometry. Still, the high sensitivity of the electrochemical properties against slight changes in the stoichiometry hamper a conclusive comparison of all the investigated compounds. Opportunities for an improvement of double perovskite cathodes performance is tentatively foreseen in combining together the diverse effective doping strategies.

  18. Sustainable energy recovery in wastewater treatment by microbial fuel cells: stable power generation with nitrogen-doped graphene cathode.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yuan; Liu, Hong; Wang, Chuan; Hou, Shuang-Xia; Yang, Nuan

    2013-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) recover energy sustainably in wastewater treatment. Performance of non-noble cathode catalysts with low cost in neutral medium is vital for stable power generation. Nitrogen-doped graphene (NG) as cathode catalyst was observed to exhibit high and durable activity at buffered pH 7.0 during electrochemical measurements and in MFCs with respect to Pt/C counterpart. Electrochemical measurements showed that the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) on NG possessed sustained activity close to the state-of-art Pt/C in terms of onset potential and electron transfer number. NG-MFCs displayed maximum voltage output of 650 mV and maximum power density of 776 ± 12 mW m(-2), larger than 610 mV and 750 ± 19 mW m(-2) of Pt/C-MFCs, respectively. Furthermore, long-time test lasted over 90 days, during which the maximum power density of NG-MFCs declined by 7.6%, with stability comparable to Pt/C-MFCs. Structure characterization of NG implied that the relatively concentrated acidic oxygen-containing groups improved such long-time stability by repelling the protons due to the same electrostatic force, and thus the C-N active centers for ORR were left undestroyed. These findings demonstrated the competitive advantage of NG to advance the application of MFCs for recovering biomass energy in treatment of wastewater with neutral pH.

  19. Optimization of a microbial fuel cell for wastewater treatment using recycled scrap metals as a cost-effective cathode material.

    PubMed

    Lefebvre, Olivier; Tan, Zi; Shen, Yujia; Ng, How Y

    2013-01-01

    Microbial fuel cell (MFC) for wastewater treatment is still hindered by the prohibitive cost of cathode material, especially when platinum is used to catalyze oxygen reduction. In this study, recycled scrap metals could be used efficiently as cathode material in a specially-designed MFC. In terms of raw power, the scrap metals ranked as follows: W/Co > Cu/Ni > Inconel 718 > carpenter alloy; however, in terms of cost and long term stability, Inconel 718 was the preferred choice. Treatment performance--assessed on real and synthetic wastewater--was considerably improved either by filling the anode compartment with carbon granules or by operating the MFC in full-loop mode. The latter option allowed reaching 99.7% acetate removal while generating a maximum power of 36 W m(-3) at an acetate concentration of 2535 mg L(-1). Under these conditions, the energy produced by the system averaged 0.1 kWh m(-3) of wastewater treated. PMID:23138054

  20. Bio-electrochemical characterization of air-cathode microbial fuel cells with microporous polyethylene/silica membrane as separator.

    PubMed

    Kircheva, Nina; Outin, Jonathan; Perrier, Gérard; Ramousse, Julien; Merlin, Gérard; Lyautey, Emilie

    2015-12-01

    The aim of this work was to study the behavior over time of a separator made of a low-cost and non-selective microporous polyethylene membrane (RhinoHide®) in an air-cathode microbial fuel cell with a reticulated vitreous carbon foam bioanode. Performances of the microporous polyethylene membrane (RhinoHide®) were compared with Nafion®-117 as a cationic exchange membrane. A non-parametric test (Mann-Whitney) done on the different sets of coulombic or energy efficiency data showed no significant difference between the two types of tested membrane (p<0.05). Volumetric power densities were ranging from 30 to 90 W·m(-3) of RVC foam for both membranes. Similar amounts of biomass were observed on both sides of the polyethylene membrane illustrating bacterial permeability of this type of separator. A monospecific denitrifying population on cathodic side of RhinoHide® membrane has been identified. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) was used at OCV conditions to characterize electrochemical behavior of MFCs by equivalent electrical circuit fitted on both Nyquist and Bode plots. Resistances and pseudo-capacitances from EIS analyses do not differ in such a way that the nature of the membrane could be considered as responsible.

  1. Advanced cathode materials for polymer electrolyte fuel cells based on pt/ metal oxides: from model electrodes to catalyst systems.

    PubMed

    Fabbri, Emiliana; Pătru, Alexandra; Rabis, Annett; Kötz, Rüdiger; Schmidt, Thomas J

    2014-01-01

    The development of stable catalyst systems for application at the cathode side of polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs) requires the substitution of the state-of-the-art carbon supports with materials showing high corrosion resistance in a strongly oxidizing environment. Metal oxides in their highest oxidation state can represent viable support materials for the next generation PEFC cathodes. In the present work a multilevel approach has been adopted to investigate the kinetics and the activity of Pt nanoparticles supported on SnO2-based metal oxides. Particularly, model electrodes made of SnO2 thin films supporting Pt nanoparticles, and porous catalyst systems made of Pt nanoparticles supported on Sb-doped SnO2 high surface area powders have been investigated. The present results indicate that SnO2-based supports do not modify the oxygen reduction reaction mechanism on the Pt nanoparticle surface, but rather lead to catalysts with enhanced specific activity compared to Pt/carbon systems. Different reasons for the enhancement in the specific activity are considered and discussed.

  2. High catalytic activity and pollutants resistivity using Fe-AAPyr cathode catalyst for microbial fuel cell application

    PubMed Central

    Santoro, Carlo; Serov, Alexey; Villarrubia, Claudia W. Narvaez; Stariha, Sarah; Babanova, Sofia; Artyushkova, Kateryna; Schuler, Andrew J.; Atanassov, Plamen

    2015-01-01

    For the first time, a new generation of innovative non-platinum group metal catalysts based on iron and aminoantipyrine as precursor (Fe-AAPyr) has been utilized in a membraneless single-chamber microbial fuel cell (SCMFC) running on wastewater. Fe-AAPyr was used as an oxygen reduction catalyst in a passive gas-diffusion cathode and implemented in SCMFC design. This catalyst demonstrated better performance than platinum (Pt) during screening in “clean” conditions (PBS), and no degradation in performance during the operation in wastewater. The maximum power density generated by the SCMFC with Fe-AAPyr was 167 ± 6 μW cm−2 and remained stable over 16 days, while SCMFC with Pt decreased to 113 ± 4 μW cm−2 by day 13, achieving similar values of an activated carbon based cathode. The presence of S2− and showed insignificant decrease of ORR activity for the Fe-AAPyr. The reported results clearly demonstrate that Fe-AAPyr can be utilized in MFCs under the harsh conditions of wastewater. PMID:26563922

  3. Bio-inspired Construction of Advanced Fuel Cell Cathode with Pt Anchored in Ordered Hybrid Polymer Matrix

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xia, Zhangxun; Wang, Suli; Jiang, Luhua; Sun, Hai; Liu, Shuang; Fu, Xudong; Zhang, Bingsen; Sheng Su, Dang; Wang, Jianqiang; Sun, Gongquan

    2015-11-01

    The significant use of platinum for catalyzing the cathodic oxygen reduction reactions (ORRs) has hampered the widespread use of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). The construction of well-defined electrode architecture in nanoscale with enhanced utilization and catalytic performance of Pt might be a promising approach to address such barrier. Inspired by the highly efficient catalytic processes in enzymes with active centers embedded in charge transport pathways, here we demonstrate for the first time a design that allocates platinum nanoparticles (Pt NPs) at the boundaries with dual-functions of conducting both electrons by aid of polypyrrole and protons via Nafion® ionomer within hierarchical nanoarrays. By mimicking enzymes functionally, an impressive ORR activity and stability is achieved. Using this brand new electrode architecture as the cathode and the anode of a PEMFC, a high mass specific power density of 5.23 W mg-1Pt is achieved, with remarkable durability. These improvements are ascribed to not only the electron decoration and the anchoring effects from the Nafion® ionomer decorated PPy substrate to the supported Pt NPs, but also the fast charge and mass transport facilitated by the electron and proton pathways within the electrode architecture.

  4. Sustainable energy recovery in wastewater treatment by microbial fuel cells: stable power generation with nitrogen-doped graphene cathode.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yuan; Liu, Hong; Wang, Chuan; Hou, Shuang-Xia; Yang, Nuan

    2013-12-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) recover energy sustainably in wastewater treatment. Performance of non-noble cathode catalysts with low cost in neutral medium is vital for stable power generation. Nitrogen-doped graphene (NG) as cathode catalyst was observed to exhibit high and durable activity at buffered pH 7.0 during electrochemical measurements and in MFCs with respect to Pt/C counterpart. Electrochemical measurements showed that the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) on NG possessed sustained activity close to the state-of-art Pt/C in terms of onset potential and electron transfer number. NG-MFCs displayed maximum voltage output of 650 mV and maximum power density of 776 ± 12 mW m(-2), larger than 610 mV and 750 ± 19 mW m(-2) of Pt/C-MFCs, respectively. Furthermore, long-time test lasted over 90 days, during which the maximum power density of NG-MFCs declined by 7.6%, with stability comparable to Pt/C-MFCs. Structure characterization of NG implied that the relatively concentrated acidic oxygen-containing groups improved such long-time stability by repelling the protons due to the same electrostatic force, and thus the C-N active centers for ORR were left undestroyed. These findings demonstrated the competitive advantage of NG to advance the application of MFCs for recovering biomass energy in treatment of wastewater with neutral pH. PMID:24219223

  5. Load cycle durability of a graphitized carbon black-supported platinum catalyst in polymer electrolyte fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takei, Chikara; Kakinuma, Katsuyoshi; Kawashima, Kazuhito; Tashiro, Keisuke; Watanabe, Masahiro; Uchida, Makoto

    2016-08-01

    We focus on Pt degradation occurring during fuel cell vehicle (FCV) combined drive cycles involving load and open circuit voltage (OCV) just after startup and during idling. Load cycle durability is evaluated as a function of OCV/load holding time, load rate and relative humidity (RH) with a graphitized carbon black-supported platinum catalyst (Pt/GCB) in the cathode. The degradation of Pt/GCB is suppressed for shorter OCV holding times, lower load rates and lower RH. Scanning ion microscopy (SIM) images of membrane cross-sections indicate that the amount of Pt deposited in the membrane decreases during drive cycles involving load with short OCV holding times. Investigations of the Pt distribution in the cathode catalyst layer (CL) by using scanning TEM-EDX show that the dissolution of Pt is suppressed on the membrane side in the CL. The Pt dissolution is accelerated by the high Pt oxidation due to the long OCV holding time. A load cycle with both long OCV holding time and low load inhibits the Pt2+ migration into the membrane but accelerates the Pt particle growth due to electrochemical Ostwald ripening; meanwhile, a load cycle with long OCV holding time at lower RH prevents both the Pt dissolution and particle growth.

  6. Same-View Nano-XAFS/STEM-EDS Imagings of Pt Chemical Species in Pt/C Cathode Catalyst Layers of a Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell.

    PubMed

    Takao, Shinobu; Sekizawa, Oki; Samjeské, Gabor; Nagamatsu, Shin-ichi; Kaneko, Takuma; Yamamoto, Takashi; Higashi, Kotaro; Nagasawa, Kensaku; Uruga, Tomoya; Iwasawa, Yasuhiro

    2015-06-01

    We have made the first success in the same-view imagings of 2D nano-XAFS and TEM/STEM-EDS under a humid N2 atmosphere for Pt/C cathode catalyst layers in membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs) of polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs) with Nafion membrane to examine the degradation of Pt/C cathodes by anode gas exchange cycles (start-up/shut-down simulations of PEFC vehicles). The same-view imaging under the humid N2 atmosphere provided unprecedented spatial information on the distribution of Pt nanoparticles and oxidation states in the Pt/C cathode catalyst layer as well as Nafion ionomer-filled nanoholes of carbon support in the wet MEA, which evidence the origin of the formation of Pt oxidation species and isolated Pt nanoparticles in the nanohole areas of the cathode layer with different Pt/ionomer ratios, relevant to the degradation of PEFC catalysts.

  7. A comparison of glucose oxidase and aldose dehydrogenase as mediated anodes in printed glucose/oxygen enzymatic fuel cells using ABTS/laccase cathodes.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, Peter; Tuurala, Saara; Vaari, Anu; Valkiainen, Matti; Smolander, Maria; Leech, Dónal

    2012-10-01

    Current generation by mediated enzyme electron transfer at electrode surfaces can be harnessed to provide biosensors and redox reactions in enzymatic fuel cells. A glucose/oxygen enzymatic fuel cell can provide power for portable and implantable electronic devices. High volume production of enzymatic fuel cell prototypes will likely require printing of electrode and catalytic materials. Here we report on preparation and performance of, completely enzymatic, printed glucose/oxygen biofuel cells. The cells are based on filter paper coated with conducting carbon inks, enzyme and mediator. A comparison of cell performance using a range of mediators for either glucose oxidase (GOx) or aldose dehydrogenase (ALDH) oxidation of glucose at the anode and ABTS and a fungal laccase, for reduction of oxygen at the cathode, is reported. Highest power output, although of limited stability, is observed for ALDH anodes mediated by an osmium complex, providing a maximum power density of 3.5 μW cm(-2) at 0.34 V, when coupled to a laccase/ABTS cathode. The stability of cell voltage in a biobattery format, above a threshold of 200 mV under a moderate 75 kΩ load, is used to benchmark printed fuel cell performance. Highest stability is obtained for printed fuel cells using ALDH, providing cell voltages over the threshold for up to 74 h, compared to only 2 h for cells with anodes using GOx. These results provide promising directions for further development of mass-producible, completely enzymatic, printed biofuel cells.

  8. A comparison of glucose oxidase and aldose dehydrogenase as mediated anodes in printed glucose/oxygen enzymatic fuel cells using ABTS/laccase cathodes.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, Peter; Tuurala, Saara; Vaari, Anu; Valkiainen, Matti; Smolander, Maria; Leech, Dónal

    2012-10-01

    Current generation by mediated enzyme electron transfer at electrode surfaces can be harnessed to provide biosensors and redox reactions in enzymatic fuel cells. A glucose/oxygen enzymatic fuel cell can provide power for portable and implantable electronic devices. High volume production of enzymatic fuel cell prototypes will likely require printing of electrode and catalytic materials. Here we report on preparation and performance of, completely enzymatic, printed glucose/oxygen biofuel cells. The cells are based on filter paper coated with conducting carbon inks, enzyme and mediator. A comparison of cell performance using a range of mediators for either glucose oxidase (GOx) or aldose dehydrogenase (ALDH) oxidation of glucose at the anode and ABTS and a fungal laccase, for reduction of oxygen at the cathode, is reported. Highest power output, although of limited stability, is observed for ALDH anodes mediated by an osmium complex, providing a maximum power density of 3.5 μW cm(-2) at 0.34 V, when coupled to a laccase/ABTS cathode. The stability of cell voltage in a biobattery format, above a threshold of 200 mV under a moderate 75 kΩ load, is used to benchmark printed fuel cell performance. Highest stability is obtained for printed fuel cells using ALDH, providing cell voltages over the threshold for up to 74 h, compared to only 2 h for cells with anodes using GOx. These results provide promising directions for further development of mass-producible, completely enzymatic, printed biofuel cells. PMID:22200380

  9. Highly stable precious metal-free cathode catalyst for fuel cell application

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serov, Alexey; Workman, Michael J.; Artyushkova, Kateryna; Atanassov, Plamen; McCool, Geoffrey; McKinney, Sam; Romero, Henry; Halevi, Barr; Stephenson, Thomas

    2016-09-01

    A platinum group metal-free (PGM-free) oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) catalyst engineered for stability has been synthesized using the sacrificial support method (SSM). This catalyst was comprehensively characterized by physiochemical analyses and tested for performance and durability in fuel cell membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs). This catalyst, belonging to the family of Fe-N-C materials, is easily scalable and can be manufactured in batches up to 200 g. The fuel cell durability tests were performed in a single cell configuration at realistic operating conditions of 0.65 V, 1.25 atmgauge air, and 90% RH for 100 h. In-depth characterization of surface chemistry and morphology of the catalyst layer before and after durability tests were performed. The failure modes of the PGM-free electrodes were derived from structure-to-property correlations. It is suggested that under constant voltage operation, the performance loss results from degradation of the electrode pore structure, while under carbon corrosion accelerated test protocols the failure mode is catalyst corrosion.

  10. Perovskite Sr₁-xCexCoO₃-δ (0.05 ≤ x ≤ 0.15) as superior cathodes for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wei; Hong, Tao; Li, Shuai; Ma, Zhaohui; Sun, Chunwen; Xia, Changrong; Chen, Liquan

    2013-02-01

    Perovskite Sr(1-x)Ce(x)CoO(3-δ) (0.05 ≤ x ≤ 0.15) have been prepared by a sol-gel method and studied as cathodes for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells. As SOFC cathodes, Sr(1-x)Ce(x)CoO(3-δ) materials have sufficiently high electronic conductivities and excellent chemical compatibility with SDC electrolyte. The peak power density of cells with Sr(0.95)Ce(0.05)CoO(3-δ) is 0.625 W cm(-2) at 700 °C. By forming a composite cathode with an oxygen ion conductor SDC, the peak power density of the cell with Sr(0.95)Ce(0.05)CoO(3-δ)-30 wt %SDC composite cathode, reaches 1.01 W cm(-2) at 700 °C, better than that of Sm(0.5)Sr(0.5)CoO(3)-based cathode. All these results demonstrates that Sr(1-x)Ce(x)CoO(3-δ) (0.05 ≤ x ≤ 0.15)-based materials are promising cathodes for an IT-SOFC. PMID:23336216

  11. Determination of Microbial Growth by Protein Assay in an Air-Cathode Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell.

    PubMed

    Li, Na; Kakarla, Ramesh; Moon, Jung Mi; Min, Booki

    2015-07-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) have gathered attention as a novel bioenergy technology to simultaneously treat wastewater with less sludge production than the conventional activated sludge system. In two different operations of the MFC and aerobic process, microbial growth was determined by the protein assay method and their biomass yields using real wastewater were compared. The biomass yield on the anode electrode of the MFC was 0.02 g-COD-cell/g- COD-substrate and the anolyte planktonic biomass was 0.14 g-COD-cell/g-COD-substrate. An MFC without anode electrode resulted in the biomass yield of 0.07 ± 0.03 g-COD-cell/g-COD-substrate, suggesting that oxygen diffusion from the cathode possibly supported the microbial growth. In a comparative test, the biomass yield under aerobic environment was 0.46 ± 0.07 g-COD-cell/g-COD-substrate, which was about 3 times higher than the total biomass value in the MFC operation.

  12. Catalyzed double layer cathodes for high performance and long life molten carbonate fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Bischoff, M.; Jantsch, U.; Rohland, B.

    1996-12-31

    NiO/LiCoO{sub 2} double layer cathodes (DLCs) were prepared with a thin highly active LiCoO{sub 2}-layer by a new double layer tape casting/sintering procedure. The resulting metallic porous precursor plates were mounted into the MCFC and heated up by a special procedure to form LiCoO{sub 2} from air, Co and Li{sub 2}CO{sub 3} in a solid/gas reaction. MCFCs with highly active NiO/LiCoO{sub 2}-DLCs can operate over prolonged periods of time with a Ni-precipitation which is 10% lower than one finds with state of the art NiO cathodes. According to LiCoO{sub 2}-cathodes have theoretical life times of more than 100 000 hours at nonpressurized conditions. MCFCs with new NiO/LiCoO{sub 2} double layer cathodes (DLC) were investigated with regard to variable parameters of their microstructure. From the agglomerate model of the porous MCFC cathode, the dependence of the polarization resistance from the radius of the agglomerates and the inner agglomerate surface area was calculated.

  13. Oxygen reduction reaction on Cu-doped Ag cluster for fuel-cell cathode.

    PubMed

    Ma, Wenqiang; Chen, Fuyi; Zhang, Nan; Wu, Xiaoqiang

    2014-10-01

    The development of fuel cells as clean-energy technologies is largely limited by the prohibitive cost of the noble-metal catalysts needed for catalyzing the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in fuel cells. A fundamental understanding of catalyst design principle that links material structures to the catalytic activity can accelerate the search for highly active and abundant bimetallic catalysts to replace platinum. Here, we present a first-principles study of ORR on Ag12Cu cluster in alkaline environment. The adsorptions of O2, OOH, and OH on Cu-doped Ag13 are stronger than on Ag13. The d-band centers of adsorption sites show the Cu-doping makes d-electrons transferred to higher energy state, and improves O2 dissociation. ORR processes on Ag12Cu and Ag13 indicate Cu-doping can strongly promote ORR, and ORR process can be better preformed on Ag12Cu than on Ag13. For four-electron transfer, the effective reversible potential is 0.401 V/RHE on Ag12Cu in alkaline medium. PMID:25227449

  14. ACTIVE CATHODES FOR SUPER-HIGH POWER DENSITY SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELLS THROUGH SPACE CHARGE EFFECTS

    SciTech Connect

    Anil V. Virkar

    2004-05-17

    This report summarizes the work done during the sixth quarter of the project. Effort was directed in three areas: (1) Further development of the model on the role of connectivity on ionic conductivity of porous bodies, including the role of grain boundaries and space charge region. (2) Calculation of the effect of space charge and morphology of porous bodies on the effective charge transfer resistance of porous composite cathodes. (3) The investigation of the three electrode system for the measurement of cathodic polarization using amperometric sensors.

  15. Micro fuel cell

    SciTech Connect

    Zook, L.A.; Vanderborgh, N.E.; Hockaday, R.

    1998-12-31

    An ambient temperature, liquid feed, direct methanol fuel cell device is under development. A metal barrier layer was used to block methanol crossover from the anode to the cathode side while still allowing for the transport of protons from the anode to the cathode. A direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) is an electrochemical engine that converts chemical energy into clean electrical power by the direct oxidation of methanol at the fuel cell anode. This direct use of a liquid fuel eliminates the need for a reformer to convert the fuel to hydrogen before it is fed into the fuel cell.

  16. Fuel cell system combustor

    DOEpatents

    Pettit, William Henry

    2001-01-01

    A fuel cell system including a fuel reformer heated by a catalytic combustor fired by anode and cathode effluents. The combustor includes a turbulator section at its input end for intimately mixing the anode and cathode effluents before they contact the combustors primary catalyst bed. The turbulator comprises at least one porous bed of mixing media that provides a tortuous path therethrough for creating turbulent flow and intimate mixing of the anode and cathode effluents therein.

  17. Electrochemical Performance and Stability of the Cathode for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: III. Role of volatile boron species on LSM/YSZ and LSCF

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Xiao Dong; Templeton, Jared W.; Zhu, Zihua; Chou, Y. S.; Maupin, Gary D.; Lu, Zigui; Brow, R. K.; Stevenson, Jeffry W.

    2010-09-02

    Boron oxide is a key component to tailor the softening temperature and viscosity of the sealing glass for solid oxide fuel cells. The primary concern regarding the use of boron containing sealing glasses is the volatility of boron species, which possibly results in cathode degradation. In this paper, we report the role of volatile boron species on the electrochemical performance of LSM/YSZ and LSCF cathodes at various SOFC operation temperatures. The transport rate of boron, ~ 3.24×10-12 g/cm2•sec was measured at 750°C with air saturated with 2.8% moisture. A reduction in power density was observed in cells with LSM/YSZ cathodes after introduction of the boron source to the cathode air stream. Partial recovery of the power density was observed after the boron source was removed. Results from post-test secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) analysis the partial recovery in power density correlated with partil removal of the deposited boron by the clean air stream. The presence of boron was also observed in LSCF cathodes by SIMS analysis, however the effect of boron on the electrochemical performance of LSCF cathode was negligible. Coverage of triple phase boundaries in LSM/YSZ was postulated as the cause for the observed reduction in electrochemical performance.

  18. Sustainable design of high-performance microsized microbial fuel cell with carbon nanotube anode and air cathode.

    PubMed

    Mink, Justine E; Hussain, Muhammad Mustafa

    2013-08-27

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are a promising alternative energy source that both generates electricity and cleans water. Fueled by liquid wastes such as wastewater or industrial wastes, the microbial fuel cell converts waste into energy. Microsized MFCs are essentially miniature energy harvesters that can be used to power on-chip electronics, lab-on-a-chip devices, and/or sensors. As MFCs are a relatively new technology, microsized MFCs are also an important rapid testing platform for the comparison and introduction of new conditions or materials into macroscale MFCs, especially nanoscale materials that have high potential for enhanced power production. Here we report a 75 μL microsized MFC on silicon using CMOS-compatible processes and employ a novel nanomaterial with exceptional electrochemical properties, multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), as the on-chip anode. We used this device to compare the usage of the more commonly used but highly expensive anode material gold, as well as a more inexpensive substitute, nickel. This is the first anode material study done using the most sustainably designed microsized MFC to date, which utilizes ambient oxygen as the electron acceptor with an air cathode instead of the chemical ferricyanide and without a membrane. Ferricyanide is unsustainable, as the chemical must be continuously refilled, while using oxygen, naturally found in air, makes the device mobile and is a key step in commercializing this for portable technology such as lab-on-a-chip for point-of-care diagnostics. At 880 mA/m(2) and 19 mW/m(2) the MWCNT anode outperformed the others in both current and power densities with between 6 and 20 times better performance. All devices were run for over 15 days, indicating a stable and high-endurance energy harvester already capable of producing enough power for ultra-low-power electronics and able to consistently power them over time. PMID:23899322

  19. Sustainable design of high-performance microsized microbial fuel cell with carbon nanotube anode and air cathode.

    PubMed

    Mink, Justine E; Hussain, Muhammad Mustafa

    2013-08-27

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are a promising alternative energy source that both generates electricity and cleans water. Fueled by liquid wastes such as wastewater or industrial wastes, the microbial fuel cell converts waste into energy. Microsized MFCs are essentially miniature energy harvesters that can be used to power on-chip electronics, lab-on-a-chip devices, and/or sensors. As MFCs are a relatively new technology, microsized MFCs are also an important rapid testing platform for the comparison and introduction of new conditions or materials into macroscale MFCs, especially nanoscale materials that have high potential for enhanced power production. Here we report a 75 μL microsized MFC on silicon using CMOS-compatible processes and employ a novel nanomaterial with exceptional electrochemical properties, multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), as the on-chip anode. We used this device to compare the usage of the more commonly used but highly expensive anode material gold, as well as a more inexpensive substitute, nickel. This is the first anode material study done using the most sustainably designed microsized MFC to date, which utilizes ambient oxygen as the electron acceptor with an air cathode instead of the chemical ferricyanide and without a membrane. Ferricyanide is unsustainable, as the chemical must be continuously refilled, while using oxygen, naturally found in air, makes the device mobile and is a key step in commercializing this for portable technology such as lab-on-a-chip for point-of-care diagnostics. At 880 mA/m(2) and 19 mW/m(2) the MWCNT anode outperformed the others in both current and power densities with between 6 and 20 times better performance. All devices were run for over 15 days, indicating a stable and high-endurance energy harvester already capable of producing enough power for ultra-low-power electronics and able to consistently power them over time.

  20. Simulation and characterization of cathode reactions in solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Robert E., Jr.

    2007-12-01

    In this study, we have developed a dense La0.85Sr0.15 MnO3-delta (LSM) - Ce0.9Gd0.1O 1.95 (GDC) composite electrode system for studying the surface modification of cathodes. The LSM and GDC grains in the composite were well defined and distinguished using energy dispersive x-ray (EDX) analysis. The specific three-phase boundary (TPB) length per unit electrode surface area was systematically controlled by adjusting the LSM to GDC volume ratio of the composite from 40% up to 70%. The TPB length for each tested sample was determined through stereological techniques and used to correlate the cell performance and degradation with the specific TPB length per unit surface area. An overlapping spheres percolation model was developed to estimate the activity of the TPB lines on the surface of the dense composite electrodes developed. The model suggested that the majority of the TPB lines would be active and the length of those lines maximized if the volume percent of the electrolyte material was kept in the range of 47--57%. Additionally, other insights into the processing conditions to maximize the amount of active TPB length were garnered from both the stereology calculations and the percolation simulations. Steady-state current voltage measurements as well as electrochemical impedance measurements on numerous samples under various environmental conditions were completed. The apparent activation energy for the reduction reaction was found to lie somewhere between 31 kJ/mol and 41 kJ/mol depending upon the experimental conditions. The exchange current density was found to vary with the partial pressure of oxygen differently over two separate regions. At relatively low partial pressures, i0 had an approximately p0.17O2 dependence and at relatively high partial pressures, i 0 had an approximately p0.35O2 dependence. This led to the conclusion that a change in the rate limiting step occurs over this range. A method for deriving the electrochemical properties from proposed

  1. Effects of carbon supports on Pt distribution, ionomer coverage and cathode performance for polymer electrolyte fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Young-Chul; Tokiwa, Haruki; Kakinuma, Katsuyoshi; Watanabe, Masahiro; Uchida, Makoto

    2016-05-01

    We investigate the effects of the carbon supports on the Pt distribution, ionomer coverage and cathode performance of carbon-supported Pt catalysts, by using STEM observation, N2 adsorption analysis and electrochemical characterization. According to the STEM observation, the effective Pt surface area (S(e)Pt), which is determined by the location and size of the Pt particles on the supports, increases in the following order: c-Pt/CB < c-Pt/GCB < n-Pt/AB800 < n-Pt/AB250. The N2 adsorption analyses show that the Pt particles observed in the interior of the CB and AB800-supported Pt catalysts during the STEM observation could be ascribed to the hollow structures inside the carbon supports, which decrease their effective Pt surface areas. The S(e)Pt values are in good agreement with the cell performance in the high current density region. In spite of the highest Pt utilization (UPt) value (>90%) and uniform ionomer coverage, the c-Pt/CB catalyst shows the lowest cell performance due to the lower S(e)Pt value. On the other hand, the n-Pt/AB250 catalyst, for which all of the Pt particles exist only on the exterior surface, is found to be the most attractive in order to generate the large current densities required by actual fuel cell operation.

  2. Effects of proton exchange membrane on the performance and microbial community composition of air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yun-Yeong; Kim, Tae Gwan; Cho, Kyung-Suk

    2015-10-10

    This study investigated the effects of proton exchange membranes (PEMs) on performance and microbial community of air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Air-cathode MFCs with reactor volume of 1L were constructed in duplicate with or without PEM (designated as ACM-MFC and AC-MFC, respectively) and fed with a mixture of glucose and acetate (1:1, w:w). The maximum power density and coulombic efficiency did not differ between MFCs in the absence or presence of a PEM. However, PEM use adversely affected maximum voltage production and the rate of organic compound removal (p<0.05). Quantitative droplet digital PCR indicated that AC-MFCs had a greater bacterial population than ACM-MFCs (p<0.05). Likewise, ribosomal tag pyrosequencing revealed that the diversity index of bacterial communities was greater for AC-MFCs (p<0.05). Network analysis revealed that the most abundant genus was Enterococcus, which comprised ≥62% of the community and was positively associated with PEM and negatively associated with the rate of chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal (Pearson correlation>0.9 and p<0.05). Geobacter, which is known as an exoelectrogen, was positively associated with maximum power density and negatively associated with PEM. Thus, these results suggest that the absence of PEM favored the growth of Geobacter, a key player for electricity generation in MFC systems. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that MFC systems without PEM are more efficient with respect to power production and COD removal as well as exoelectrogen growth.

  3. ACTIVE CATHODES FOR SUPER-HIGH POWER DENSITY SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELLS THROUGH SPACE CHARGE EFFECTS

    SciTech Connect

    Anil V. Virkar

    2003-10-11

    This report summarizes the work done during the second quarter of the project. Effort is directed in two areas: (1) The use of a novel method to achieve a given porosity level with high contiguity and thus conductivity. (2) Relate the measured conductivity to porosity and contiguity. The rationale for these experiments was to develop cathodes with high ionic conductivity, so that the effective polarization resistance will be concomitantly lowered.

  4. Electrical contacts between cathodes and metallic interconnects in solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Zhenguo; Xia, Guanguang; Singh, Prabhakar; Stevenson, Jeffry W.

    In this work, simulated cathode/interconnect structures were used to investigate the effects of different contact materials on the contact resistance between a strontium doped lanthanum ferrite cathode and a Crofer22 APU interconnect. Among the materials studied, Pt, which has a prohibitive cost for the application, demonstrated the best performance as a contact paste. For the relatively cost-effective perovskites, the contact ASR was found to depend on their electrical conductivity, scale growth on the metallic interconnect, and interactions between the contact material and the metallic interconnect or particularly the scale grown on the interconnect. Manganites appeared to promote manganese-containing spinel interlayer formation that helped minimize the increase of contact ASR. Chromium from the interconnects reacted with strontium in the perovskites to form SrCrO 4. An improved performance was achieved by application of a thermally grown (Mn,Co) 3O 4 spinel protection layer on Crofer22 APU that dramatically minimized the contact resistance between the cathodes and interconnects.

  5. Development of ternary alloy cathode catalysts for phosphoric acid fuel cells: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Jalan, V.; Kosek, J.; Giner, J.; Taylor, E. J.; Anderson, E.; Bianchi, V.; Brooks, C.; Cahill, K.; Cropley, C.; Desai, M.; Frost, D.; Morriseau, B.; Paul, B.; Poirier, J.; Rousseau, M.; Swette, L.; Waterhouse, R.

    1988-11-01

    The overall objective of the program was the identification development and incorporation of high activity platinum ternary alloys on corrosion resistant supports, for use in advanced phosphoric acid fuel cells. Two high activity ternary alloys, Pr-Cr-Ce and Pt-Ni-Co, both supported on Vulcan XC-72, were identified during the course of the program. The Pr-Ni-Co system was selected for optimization, including preparation and evaluation on corrosion resistant supports such as 2700/degree/C heat-treated Vulcan XC-72 and 2700/degree/ heat-treated Black Pearls 2000. A series of tests identified optimum metal ratios, heat-treatment temperatures and heat-treatment atmospheres for the Pr-Ni-Co system. During characterization testing, it was discovered that approximately 50% of the nickel and cobalt present in the starting material could be removed, subsequent to alloy formation, without degrading performance. Extremely stable full cell performance was observed for the Pt-Ni-Co system during a 10,000 hour atmosphere pressure life test. Several theories are proposed to explain the enhancement in activity due to alloy formation. Recommendations are made for future research in this area. 62 refs., 23 figs., 27 tabs.

  6. Poly(vinylidene fluoride-co-hexafluoropropylene) phase inversion coating as a diffusion layer to enhance the cathode performance in microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wulin; Zhang, Fang; He, Weihua; Liu, Jia; Hickner, Michael A.; Logan, Bruce E.

    2014-12-01

    A low cost poly(vinylidene fluoride-co-hexafluoropropylene) (PVDF-HFP) phase inversion coating was developed as a cathode diffusion layer to enhance the performance of microbial fuel cells (MFCs). A maximum power density of 1430 ± 90 mW m-2 was achieved at a PVDF-HFP loading of 4.4 mg cm-2 (4:1 polymer:carbon black), with activated carbon as the oxygen reduction cathode catalyst. This power density was 31% higher than that obtained with a more conventional platinum (Pt) catalyst on carbon cloth (Pt/C) cathode with a poly(tetrafluoroethylene) (PTFE) diffusion layer (1090 ± 30 mW m-2). The improved performance was due in part to a larger oxygen mass transfer coefficient of 3 × 10-3 cm s-1 for the PVDF-HFP coated cathode, compared to 1.7 × 10-3 cm s-1 for the carbon cloth/PTFE-based cathode. The diffusion layer was resistant to electrolyte leakage up to water column heights of 41 ± 0.5 cm (4.4 mg cm-2 loading of 4:1 polymer:carbon black) to 70 ± 5 cm (8.8 mg cm-2 loading of 4:1 polymer:carbon black). This new type of PVDF-HFP/carbon black diffusion layer could reduce the cost of manufacturing cathodes for MFCs.

  7. The performance and mechanism of modified activated carbon air cathode by non-stoichiometric nano Fe3O4 in the microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Fu, Zhou; Yan, Litao; Li, Kexun; Ge, Baochao; Pu, Liangtao; Zhang, Xi

    2015-12-15

    Cathodic catalyst is one of the key materials in microbial fuel cell (MFC). The addition of non-stoichiometric nano Fe3O4 in activated carbon (NSFe3O4/AC) air cathode was beneficial to boosting the charge transfer of the cathode accompanying with the enhancement of power performance in MFC. The air cathode modified by NSFe3O4 (5%, Wt%) increased the maximum power density by 83.3% from 780 mW/m(2) to 1430 mW/m(2) compared with bare air cathode. The modified cathodes showed enhanced electrochemical properties and appeared the maximum exchange current density of 18.71×10(-4) A/cm(2) for oxygen reduction reaction. The mechanism of oxygen reduction for the NSFe3O4/AC catalyst was a 4-electron pathway. The oxygen vacancy of the NSFe3O4 played a crucial role in electrochemical catalytic activity. The great catalytic performance made NSFe3O4 have a promising outlook applied in MFC.

  8. Energetics of perovskite-type materials applied in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs): Electrolytes, cathodes and interconnects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Jihong

    Perovskite-type oxides (ABO3) find a great variety of applications in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), including solid electrolytes, cathodes and interconnects, which are closely related to the defect chemistry involved. Thermodynamic studies are needed to systematically understand the nature of the structure-property relations and provide guidance to predict and/or select proper materials. High temperature solution calorimetry in molten oxide solvents is a powerful tool and has been applied for several perovskite systems that have simple (undoped) and complex (doped) compositions. LaBO3 perovskites (B = Al, Ga, Sc, In, Cr, Fe, Co, Ni) represent a group of excellent parent materials for electrolytes, cathodes, and interconnects in SOFCs. Their enthalpies of formation from oxides generally exhibit a relationship between stability and the major structural parameter for perovskites, the tolerance factor. As the tolerance factor deviates more from unity, the enthalpy of formation from oxides becomes less exothermic. This work verifies this general trend for A3+B3+O3 type perovskites, joining other two types, i.e., A1+B5+O 3 and A2+B4+O3. In alkaline earth doped perovskites, though structural parameters are likely to continue affecting stability, defects, which are introduced upon doping, actually play a more profound role in defining energetic trends. In the newly developed electrolyte materials, Mg, Sr, and Ba-doped LaGaO 3 perovskites, oxygen vacancies are created to compensate the charge imbalance between dopant and host ions. Oxygen vacancies have a destabilization effect on the structure due to the partial disconnection of the corner-shared BO6 octahedral framework. On the other hand, they tend to order at the short-range scale, forming vacancy-dopant clusters, as evidenced by neutron diffraction. In alkaline earth doped perovskites that contain transition metals, two charge compensation scenarios are possible: oxidation of the transition metal or creation of

  9. PRELIMINARY IN-SITU X-RAY ABSORPTION FINE STRUCTURE EXAMINATION OF PT/C AND PTCO/C CATHODE CATALYSTS IN AN OPERATIONAL POLYMER ELECTROLYTE FUEL CELL

    SciTech Connect

    Phelan, B.T.; Myers, D.J.; Smith, M.C.

    2009-01-01

    State-of-the-art polymer electrolyte fuel cells require a conditioning period to reach optimized cell performance. There is insuffi cient understanding about the behavior of catalysts during this period, especially with regard to the changing environment of the cathode electrocatalyst, which is typically Pt nanoparticles supported on high surface area Vulcan XC-72 carbon (Pt/C). The purpose of this research was to record preliminary observations of the changing environment during the conditioning phase using X-Ray Absorption Fine Structure (XAFS) spectroscopy. XAFS was recorded for a Pt/C cathode at the Pt L3-edge and a PtCo/C cathode at both the Pt L3-edge and Co K-edge. Using precision machined graphite cell-blocks, both transmission and fl uorescence data were recorded at Sector 12-BM-B of Argonne National Laboratory’s Advanced Photon Source. The fl uorescence and transmission edge steps allow for a working description of the changing electrocatalyst environment, especially water concentration, at the anode and cathode as functions of operating parameters. These features are discussed in the context of how future analysis may correlate with potential, current and changing apparent thickness of the membrane electrode assembly through loss of catalyst materials (anode, cathode, carbon support). Such direct knowledge of the effect of the conditioning protocol on the electrocatalyst may lead to better catalyst design. In turn, this may lead to minimizing, or even eliminating, the conditioning period.

  10. Carbon dioxide addition to microbial fuel cell cathodes maintains sustainable catholyte pH and improves anolyte pH, alkalinity, and conductivity.

    PubMed

    Fornero, Jeffrey J; Rosenbaum, Miriam; Cotta, Michael A; Angenent, Largus T

    2010-04-01

    Bioelectrochemical system (BES) pH imbalances develop due to anodic proton-generating oxidation reactions and cathodic hydroxide-ion-generating reduction reactions. Until now, workers added unsustainable buffers to reduce the pH difference between the anode and cathode because the pH imbalance contributes to BES potential losses and, therefore, power losses. Here, we report that adding carbon dioxide (CO(2)) gas to the cathode, which creates a CO(2)/bicarbonate buffered catholyte system, can diminish microbial fuel cell (MFC) pH imbalances in contrast to the CO(2)/carbonate buffered catholyte system by Torres, Lee, and Rittmann [Environ. Sci. Technol. 2008, 42, 8773]. We operated an air-cathode and liquid-cathode MFC side-by-side. For the air-cathode MFC, CO(2) addition resulted in a stable catholyte film pH of 6.61 +/- 0.12 and a 152% increase in steady-state power density. By adding CO(2) to the liquid-cathode system, we sustained a steady catholyte pH (pH = 5.94 +/- 0.02) and a low pH imbalance (DeltapH = 0.65 +/- 0.18) over a 2-week period without external salt buffer addition. By migrating bicarbonate ions from the cathode to the anode (with an anion-exchange membrane), we increased the anolyte pH (DeltapH = 0.39 +/- 0.31), total alkalinity (494 +/- 6 to 582 +/- 6 as mg CaCO(3)/L), and conductivity (1.53 +/- 0.49 to 2.16 +/- 0.03 mS/cm) relative to the feed properties. We also verified with a phosphate-buffered MFC that our reaction rates were limited mainly by the reactor configuration rather than limitations due to the bicarbonate buffer.

  11. Fabrication of lanthanum strontium cobalt ferrite (LSCF) cathodes for high performance solid oxide fuel cells using a low price commercial inkjet printer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Gwon Deok; Neoh, Ke Chean; Bae, Kiho; Choi, Hyung Jong; Park, Suk Won; Son, Ji-Won; Shim, Joon Hyung

    2016-02-01

    In this study, we investigate a method to fabricate high quality lanthanum strontium cobalt ferrite (LSCF) cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) using a commercial low price inkjet printer. The ink source is synthesized by dissolving the LSCF nanopowder in a water-based solvent with a proper amount of surfactants. Microstructures of the LSCF layer, including porosity and thickness per printing scan cycle, are adjusted by grayscale in the printing image. It is successfully demonstrated that anode-supported SOFCs with optimally printed LSCF cathodes can produce decent power output, i.e., a maximum peak power density of 377 mW cm-2 at 600 °C, in our experiment. We expect that this approach can support the quick and easy prototyping and evaluating of a variety of cathode materials in SOFC research.

  12. ACTIVE CATHODES FOR SUPER-HIGH POWER DENSITY SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELLS THROUGH SPACE CHARGE EFFECTS

    SciTech Connect

    Anil V. Virkar

    2003-12-12

    This report summarizes the work done during the fourth quarter of the project. Effort was directed in two areas, namely, continued further development of the model on the role of connectivity on ionic conductivity of porous bodies, including the role of grain boundaries and space charge, and its relationship to cathode polarization; and fabrication of samaria-doped ceria porous (SDC). The work on the model development involves calculation of the effect of space charge on transport through porous bodies. Three specific cases have been examined: (1) Space charge resistivity greater than the grain resistivity, (2) Space charge resistivity equal to the grain resistivity, and (3) Space charge resistivity lower than the grain resistivity. The model accounts for transport through three regions: the bulk of the grain, the space charge region, and the structural part of the grain boundary. The effect of neck size has been explicitly incorporated. In future work, the effective resistivity will be incorporated into the effective cathode polarization resistance. The results will then be compared with experiments.

  13. A mediated glucose/oxygen enzymatic fuel cell based on printed carbon inks containing aldose dehydrogenase and laccase as anode and cathode.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, Peter; Tuurala, Saara; Vaari, Anu; Valkiainen, Matti; Smolander, Maria; Leech, Dónal

    2012-03-10

    Enzyme electrodes show great potential for many applications, as biosensors and more recently as anodes and cathodes in biocatalytic fuel cells for power generation. Enzymes have advantages over metal catalysts, as they provide high specificity and reaction rates, while operating under mild conditions. Here we report on studies related to development of mass-producible, completely enzymatic printed glucose/oxygen biofuel cells. The cells are based on filter paper coated with conducting carbon inks containing mediators and laccase, for reduction of oxygen, or aldose dehydrogenase, for oxidation of glucose. Mediator performance in these printed formats is compared to relative rate constants for the enzyme-mediator reaction in solution, for a range of anode and cathode mediators. The power output and stability of fuels cells using an acidophilic laccase isolated from Trametes hirsuta is greater, at pH 5, than that for cells based on Melanocarpus albomyces laccase, that shows optimal activity closer to neutral pH, at pH 6. Highest power output, although of limited stability, was observed for ThL/ABTS cathodes, providing a maximum power density of 3.5 μWcm(-2) at 0.34 V, when coupled to an ALDH glucose anode mediated by an osmium complex. The stability of cell voltage above a threshold of 200 mV under a moderate 75 kΩ load is used to benchmark printed fuel cell performance. Highest stability was obtained for a printed fuel cell using osmium complexes as mediators of glucose oxidation by aldose dehydrogenase, and oxygen reduction by T. hirsuta laccase, maintaining cell voltage above 200 mV for 137 h at pH 5. These results provide promising directions for further development of mass-producible, completely enzymatic, printed biofuel cells. PMID:22305173

  14. Proton-conducting Micro-solid Oxide Fuel Cells with Improved Cathode Reactions by a Nanoscale Thin Film Gadolinium-doped Ceria Interlayer

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yong; Wang, Shijie; Su, Pei-Chen

    2016-01-01

    An 8 nm-thick gadolinium-doped ceria (GDC) layer was inserted as a cathodic interlayer between the nanoscale proton-conducting yttrium-doped barium zirconate (BZY) electrolyte and the porous platinum cathode of a micro-solid oxide fuel cell (μ-SOFC), which has effectively improved the cathode reaction kinetics and rendered high cell power density. The addition of the GDC interlayer significantly reduced the cathodic activation loss and increased the peak power density of the μ-SOFC by 33% at 400 °C. The peak power density reached 445 mW/cm2 at 425 °C, which is the highest among the reported μ-SOFCs using proton-conducting electrolytes. The impressive performance was attributed to the mixed protonic and oxygen ionic conducting properties of the nano-granular GDC, and also to the high densities of grain boundaries and lattice defects in GDC interlayer that favored the oxygen incorporation and transportation during the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) and the water evolution reaction at cathode. PMID:26928192

  15. Proton-conducting Micro-solid Oxide Fuel Cells with Improved Cathode Reactions by a Nanoscale Thin Film Gadolinium-doped Ceria Interlayer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yong; Wang, Shijie; Su, Pei-Chen

    2016-02-01

    An 8 nm-thick gadolinium-doped ceria (GDC) layer was inserted as a cathodic interlayer between the nanoscale proton-conducting yttrium-doped barium zirconate (BZY) electrolyte and the porous platinum cathode of a micro-solid oxide fuel cell (μ-SOFC), which has effectively improved the cathode reaction kinetics and rendered high cell power density. The addition of the GDC interlayer significantly reduced the cathodic activation loss and increased the peak power density of the μ-SOFC by 33% at 400 °C. The peak power density reached 445 mW/cm2 at 425 °C, which is the highest among the reported μ-SOFCs using proton-conducting electrolytes. The impressive performance was attributed to the mixed protonic and oxygen ionic conducting properties of the nano-granular GDC, and also to the high densities of grain boundaries and lattice defects in GDC interlayer that favored the oxygen incorporation and transportation during the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) and the water evolution reaction at cathode.

  16. Stabilizing and enhancing activity of Ag as a catalyst for oxygen redaction reaction on hydrogen fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stolbov, Sergey; Alcantara Ortigoza, Marisol

    2013-03-01

    Progress in searching for cost-effective and highly active catalysts for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) on hydrogen fuel cell cathodes is hindered by the fact that only a few elements (expensive and scarce Pt, Ir, Au) do not dissolve in the reaction environment (acidic medium at the expected operating potential +0.8 to +1.0 V vs SHE). Yet, in this work, we explore silver as an active element for the ORR catalysts. Although the dissolution potential (DP) of elemental Ag is 0.8 V, we rely on our finding that binding of a metal monolayer (ML) to a reactive substrate can significantly increase its DP. Using our approach, we select Ag/Ru/W, Ag/Nb, and Ag/Ta as promising candidates for the ORR catalysts (where Ag and Ru are MLs). Our evaluation of DP within density functional theory (DFT) shows that, indeed, in the selected structures, DP of Ag significantly increases as compared to that of Ag(111) and, in the case of Ag/Nb, even exceeds that of Pt. The ORR free-energy diagrams calculated within DFT suggest that the above systems are more active toward ORR than Pt. We thus predict here three highly active and truly cost-effective ORR catalysts. This work was supported by NSF under Grant CBET-1249134

  17. Catalysis kinetics and porous analysis of rolling activated carbon-PTFE air-cathode in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Dong, Heng; Yu, Hongbing; Wang, Xin

    2012-12-01

    The microbial fuel cell (MFC), being an environment-friendly technology for wastewater treatment, is limited by low efficiency and high cost. Power output based on capital cost had been greatly increased in our previous work by introducing a novel activated carbon (AC) air-cathode (ACAC). The catalysis behavior of this ACAC was studied here based on catalysis kinetics and pore analysis of both carbon powders and catalyst layers (CLs). Plain AC (AC1#), ultracapacitor AC (AC2#), and non-AC (XC-72) powders were used as catalysts. The electron transfer number (n) of oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) with CLs increased by 5-23% compared to those n values of corresponding carbon powders before being rolled to CLs with PTFE, while the n value of Pt/C decreased by 38% when it was brushed with Nafion as the CL, indicating that rolling procedure with PTFE binder substantially increased the catalytic activity of carbon catalysts. Two-four times larger in micropore area of AC powders than non-AC powder resulted in 1.3-1.9 times increase in power density of MFCs. In addition, more uniform distribution of microporosity was found in AC1# than in AC2#, which could be the reason for the 25% increase in power density of ACAC1# (1355 ± 26 mW·m(-2)) compared to 1086 ± 8 mW·m(-2) of ACAC2#. PMID:23151092

  18. Performance of low cost scalable air-cathode microbial fuel cell made from clayware separator using multiple electrodes.

    PubMed

    Ghadge, Anil N; Ghangrekar, Makarand M

    2015-04-01

    Performance of scalable air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) of 26 L volume, made from clayware cylinder with multiple electrodes, was evaluated. When electrodes were connected in parallel with 100 Ω resistance (R ext), power of 11.46 mW was produced which was 4.48 and 3.73 times higher than individual electrode pair and series connection, respectively. Coulombic efficiency of 5.10 ± 0.13% and chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal of 78.8 ± 5.52% was observed at R ext of 3 Ω. Performance under different organic loading rates (OLRs) varying from 0.75 to 6.0 g CODL(-1)d(-1) revealed power of 17.85 mW (47.28 mA current) at OLR of 3.0 g CODL(-1)d(-1). Internal resistance (R int) of 5.2 Ω observed is among the least value reported in literature. Long term operational stability (14 months) demonstrates the technical viability of clayware MFC for practical applications and potential benefits towards wastewater treatment and electricity recovery. PMID:25693451

  19. A small-scale air-cathode microbial fuel cell for on-line monitoring of water quality.

    PubMed

    Di Lorenzo, Mirella; Thomson, Alexander R; Schneider, Kenneth; Cameron, Petra J; Ieropoulos, Ioannis

    2014-12-15

    The heavy use of chemicals for agricultural, industrial and domestic purposes has increased the risk of freshwater contamination worldwide. Consequently, the demand for efficient new analytical tools for on-line and on-site water quality monitoring has become particularly urgent. In this study, a small-scale single chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cell (SCMFC), fabricated by rapid prototyping layer-by-layer 3D printing, was tested as a biosensor for continuous water quality monitoring. When acetate was fed as the rate-limiting substrate, the SCMFC acted as a sensor for chemical oxygen demand (COD) in water. The linear detection range was 3-164 ppm, with a sensitivity of 0.05 μA mM(-1) cm(-2) with respect to the anode total surface area. The response time was as fast as 2.8 min. At saturating acetate concentrations (COD>164 ppm), the miniature SCMFC could rapidly detect the presence of cadmium in water with high sensitivity (0.2 μg l(-1) cm(-2)) and a lower detection limit of only 1 μg l(-1). The biosensor dynamic range was 1-25 μg l(-1). Within this range of concentrations, cadmium affected only temporarily the electroactive biofilm at the anode. When the SCMFCs were again fed with fresh wastewater and no pollutant, the initial steady-state current was recovered within 12 min.

  20. Direct electricity recovery from Canna indica by an air-cathode microbial fuel cell inoculated with rumen microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Zang, Guo-Long; Sheng, Guo-Ping; Tong, Zhong-Hua; Liu, Xian-Wei; Teng, Shao-Xiang; Li, Wen-Wei; Yu, Han-Qing

    2010-04-01

    Aquatic plants are widely used for phytoremediation, and effective disposal methods should be pursued for their utilization and to avoid further environmental pollution problems. This study demonstrated that, using an air-cathode microbial fuel cell (MFC) inoculated with rumen microorganisms, electricity could be directly produced with a maximum power density of 0.405 W/m(3) from Canna indica (canna), a lignocellulosic aquatic plant rich in cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin, without pretreatment. The mechanisms of the Canna indica degradation in the MFC were elucidated through analyzing the changes of canna structure and intermediates, that is, soluble sugars and volatile fatty acids (VFAs), in the electricity generation process. The results showed that lignin was partially removed and more cellulose became exposed on the sample surface during the electricity generation in the MFC. The electron transfer in this MFC was mainly completed through electron shuttling via self-produced mediators. This work presents an attempt to understand how complex substrates like aquatic plants are decomposed in an MFC during electricity generation. It might, hopefully, provide a promising way to utilize lignocellulosic biomass for energy generation.

  1. Enhancing the methanol tolerance of platinum nanoparticles for the cathode reaction of direct methanol fuel cells through a geometric design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Yan; Ye, Feng; Liu, Hui; Yang, Jun

    2015-11-01

    Mastery over the structure of nanoparticles might be an effective way to enhance their performance for a given application. Herein we demonstrate the design of cage-bell nanostructures to enhance the methanol tolerance of platinum (Pt) nanoparticles while remaining their catalytic activity for oxygen reduction reaction. This strategy starts with the synthesis of core-shell-shell nanoparticles with Pt and silver (Ag) residing respectively in the core and inner shell regions, which are then agitated with saturated sodium chloride (NaCl) solution to eliminate the Ag component from the inner shell region, leading to the formation of bimetallic nanoparticles with a cage-bell structure, defined as a movable Pt core enclosed by a metal shell with nano-channels, which exhibit superior methanol-tolerant property in catalyzing oxygen reduction reaction due to the different diffusion behaviour of methanol and oxygen in the porous metal shell of cage-bell structured nanoparticles. In particular, the use of remarkably inexpensive chemical agent (NaCl) to promote the formation of cage-bell structured particles containing a wide spectrum of metal shells highlights its engineering merit to produce highly selective electrocatalysts on a large scale for the cathode reaction of direct methanol fuel cells.

  2. A small-scale air-cathode microbial fuel cell for on-line monitoring of water quality.

    PubMed

    Di Lorenzo, Mirella; Thomson, Alexander R; Schneider, Kenneth; Cameron, Petra J; Ieropoulos, Ioannis

    2014-12-15

    The heavy use of chemicals for agricultural, industrial and domestic purposes has increased the risk of freshwater contamination worldwide. Consequently, the demand for efficient new analytical tools for on-line and on-site water quality monitoring has become particularly urgent. In this study, a small-scale single chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cell (SCMFC), fabricated by rapid prototyping layer-by-layer 3D printing, was tested as a biosensor for continuous water quality monitoring. When acetate was fed as the rate-limiting substrate, the SCMFC acted as a sensor for chemical oxygen demand (COD) in water. The linear detection range was 3-164 ppm, with a sensitivity of 0.05 μA mM(-1) cm(-2) with respect to the anode total surface area. The response time was as fast as 2.8 min. At saturating acetate concentrations (COD>164 ppm), the miniature SCMFC could rapidly detect the presence of cadmium in water with high sensitivity (0.2 μg l(-1) cm(-2)) and a lower detection limit of only 1 μg l(-1). The biosensor dynamic range was 1-25 μg l(-1). Within this range of concentrations, cadmium affected only temporarily the electroactive biofilm at the anode. When the SCMFCs were again fed with fresh wastewater and no pollutant, the initial steady-state current was recovered within 12 min. PMID:25005554

  3. Enhancing the methanol tolerance of platinum nanoparticles for the cathode reaction of direct methanol fuel cells through a geometric design

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Yan; Ye, Feng; Liu, Hui; Yang, Jun

    2015-01-01

    Mastery over the structure of nanoparticles might be an effective way to enhance their performance for a given application. Herein we demonstrate the design of cage-bell nanostructures to enhance the methanol tolerance of platinum (Pt) nanoparticles while remaining their catalytic activity for oxygen reduction reaction. This strategy starts with the synthesis of core-shell-shell nanoparticles with Pt and silver (Ag) residing respectively in the core and inner shell regions, which are then agitated with saturated sodium chloride (NaCl) solution to eliminate the Ag component from the inner shell region, leading to the formation of bimetallic nanoparticles with a cage-bell structure, defined as a movable Pt core enclosed by a metal shell with nano-channels, which exhibit superior methanol-tolerant property in catalyzing oxygen reduction reaction due to the different diffusion behaviour of methanol and oxygen in the porous metal shell of cage-bell structured nanoparticles. In particular, the use of remarkably inexpensive chemical agent (NaCl) to promote the formation of cage-bell structured particles containing a wide spectrum of metal shells highlights its engineering merit to produce highly selective electrocatalysts on a large scale for the cathode reaction of direct methanol fuel cells. PMID:26578100

  4. Carbon supported Ag nanoparticles as high performance cathode catalyst for H2/O2 anion exchange membrane fuel cell

    PubMed Central

    Xin, Le; Zhang, Zhiyong; Wang, Zhichao; Qi, Ji; Li, Wenzhen

    2013-01-01

    A solution phase-based nanocapsule method was successfully developed to synthesize non-platinum metal catalyst—carbon supported Ag nanoparticles (Ag/C). XRD patterns and TEM image show Ag nanoparticles with a small average size (5.4 nm) and narrow size distribution (2–9 nm) are uniformly dispersed on the carbon black Vulcan XC-72 support. The intrinsic activity and pathway of oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) on the Ag/C and commercial Pt/C were investigated using rotating ring disk electrode (RRDE) tests at room temperature. The results confirmed that the 4-electron pathway of ORR proceeds on small Ag nanoparticles, and showed comparable ORR activities on the self-prepared Ag/C and a commercial Pt/C. A single H2-O2 anion exchange membrane fuel cell (AEMFC) with the Ag/C cathode catalyst exhibited an open circuit potential of 0.98 V and a peak power density of 190 mW/cm2 at 80°C. PMID:24790944

  5. The partial oxidations of cyclohexane and benzene on the FeCl sub 3 -embedded cathode during the O sub 2 -H sub 2 fuel cell reactions

    SciTech Connect

    Yamanaka, I.; Otsuka, K. )

    1991-04-01

    Activation and partial oxidations of cyclohexane and benzene occur at ambient temperatures on cathodes containing various metal chlorides during O{sub 2}-H{sub 2} fuel cell reactions. Among the metal chlorides embedded in graphite cathodes, FeCl{sub 3} was the most effective for enhancing the partial oxidation of cyclohexane into cyclohexanol and cyclohexanone. This cathode was also effective for the hydroxylation of benzene to phenol. The effects of various kinetic factors on the rate of oxidations of cyclohexane and benzene have been examined. The kinetic results have been explained in terms of the reaction mechanism proposed. In this paper it is suggested that the activation and partial oxidation of cyclohexane and aromatics are initiated by an active oxygen, O*, generated on the iron cations at the cathode due to the reduction of dioxygen during the O{sub 2}-H{sub 2} fuel cell reactions. Experiments using H{sub 2}O{sub 2} as the oxidant have indicated that the H{sub 2}O{sub 2} cannot be a precursor of the active oxygen O*. The product distribution observed in the oxidation of toluene implies that the O* has a character more electrophilic than OH radicals.

  6. A Study Of Electrochemical Performance And Degradation Of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Cathodes Based On Three Dimensional Tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yakal-Kremski, Kyle

    Several different solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathodes, produced using varied processing conditions and subsequently subjected to different thermal ageing and current loading conditions, were assessed. The resultant electrode performance was evaluated by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and the results interpreted through extensive use of focused ion beam---scanning electron microscope (FIB-SEM) 3D tomography. Two, three, and four phase segmentation of tomographic data sets was achieved by use of several segmentation techniques, including thresholding, EM/MPM, and a method developed for this work, called self-similar region isolation segmentation. (La0.8Sr0.2)0.98MnO3-delta-(Y 2O3)0.08(ZrO2)0.92 (LSM-YSZ) symmetrical cells were manufactured and subjected to various firing temperatures, intermediate temperature anneals, and run in a novel mode of switching current to simulate operation in a reversible solid oxide cell. FIB-SEM was used to determine the reason(s) behind the observed minimum in RP at a firing temperature of 1175°C. Annealing of LSM-YSZ cells was used to simulate long times at operating temperature, with FIB-SEM used as a tool to observe changes that occur at high temperature, as compared to temperatures closer to those used in normal fuel cell operation. FIB-SEM data sets were used to map locations of metallic Ag impurity deposits in LSM-YSZ cells with time at current. La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O 3-lambda (LSCF) electrodes in symmetrical cells were life tested at SOFC operating temperature both with and without constant current. While the LSCF electrodes annealed without current showed a substantial increase in polarization resistance with time, those tested with current were essentially stable. FIB-SEM 3D image analysis before and after the life tests showed that there were no significant microstructural changes. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analysis was carried out to observe if changes in LSCF surface composition, such as Sr segregation

  7. Effects of azide on electron transport of exoelectrogens in air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xiangtong; Qu, Youpeng; Kim, Byung Hong; Choo, Pamela Yengfung; Liu, Jia; Du, Yue; He, Weihua; Chang, In Seop; Ren, Nanqi; Feng, Yujie

    2014-10-01

    The effects of azide on electron transport of exoelectrogens were investigated using air-cathode MFCs. These MFCs enriched with azide at the concentration higher than 0.5mM generated lower current and coulomb efficiency (CE) than the control reactors, but at the concentration lower than 0.2mM MFCs generated higher current and CE. Power density curves showed overshoot at higher azide concentrations, with power and current density decreasing simultaneously. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) showed that azide at high concentration increased the charge transfer resistance. These analyses might reflect that a part of electrons were consumed by the anode microbial population rather than transferred to the anode. Bacterial population analyses showed azide-enriched anodes were dominated by Deltaproteobacteria compared with the controls. Based on these results it is hypothesized that azide can eliminate the growth of aerobic respiratory bacteria, and at the same time is used as an electron acceptor/sink.

  8. Fuel Cell Animation

    NASA Video Gallery

    Oxygen (O2) and hydrogen (H2) migrate into the fuel cell. The oxygen molecules migrate to the catalyst where the anode strips some of their electrons. This allows them to move through the cathode a...

  9. Phase transition of a cobalt-free perovskite as a high-performance cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Shanshan; Zhou, Wei; Niu, Yingjie; Zhu, Zhonghua; Shao, Zongping

    2012-10-01

    It is generally recognized that the phase transition of a perovskite may be detrimental to the connection between cathode and electrolyte. Moreover, certain phase transitions may induce the formation of poor electronic and ionic conducting phase(s), thereby lowering the electrochemical performance of the cathode. Here, we present a study on the phase transition of a cobalt-free perovskite (SrNb(0.1)Fe(0.9)O(3-δ), SNF) and evaluate its effect on the electrochemical performance of the fuel cell. SNF exists as a primitive perovskite structure with space group P4mm (99) at room temperature. As evidenced by in situ high-temperature X-ray diffraction measurements over the temperature range of 600 to 1000 °C, SNF undergoes a transformation to a tetragonal structure with a space group I4/m (87). This phase transition is accompanied by a moderate change in the volume, allowing a good cathode/electrolyte interface on thermal cycling. According to the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy evaluation, the I4/m phase exhibits positive effects on the cathode's performance, showing the highest oxygen reduction reaction activity of cobalt-free cathodes reported so far. This activity improvement is attributed to enhanced oxygen surface processes.

  10. The development of catalytic performance by coating Pt-Ni on CMI7000 membrane as a cathode of a microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Cetinkaya, Afsin Y; Ozdemir, Oguz Kaan; Koroglu, Emre Oguz; Hasimoglu, Aydin; Ozkaya, Bestami

    2015-11-01

    Performance of cathode materials in microbial fuel cell (MFC) from dairy wastewater has been investigated in laboratory tests. Both cyclic voltammogram experiments and MFC tests showed that Pt-Ni cathode much better than pure Pt cathode. MFC with platinum cathode had the maximum power density of 0.180 W m(-2) while MFC with Pt:Ni (1:1) cathode produced the maximum power density of 0.637 W m(-2), even if the mass mixing ratio of Pt is lower in the alloy were used. The highest chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal efficiency was around 82-86% in both systems. The cyclic voltammogram (CV) analyses show that Pt:Ni (1:1) offers higher specific surface area than Pt alone does. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) results showed that entire Pt:Ni (1:1) alloys can reduce the oxygen easily than pure platinum, even though less precious metal amount. The main outcome of this study is that Pt-Ni, may serve as a alternative catalyst in MFC applications.

  11. Design and processing parameters of La2NiO4+δ-based cathode for anode-supported planar solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeong, Changwoo; Lee, Jong-Heun; Park, Mansoo; Hong, Jongsup; Kim, Hyoungchul; Son, Ji-Won; Lee, Jong-Ho; Kim, Byung-Kook; Yoon, Kyung Joong

    2015-11-01

    The Ruddlesden-Popper phase lanthanum nickelate, La2NiO4+δ (LNO), is successfully implemented as a strontium- and cobalt-free cathode in anode-supported planar solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) through systematic optimization of materials, processing and structural parameters. Chemical interaction between LNO and gadolinia-doped ceria (GDC), which leads to phase decomposition of composite cathode and significant deterioration of the electrochemical performance, is prevented by lowering the processing temperature below 1000 °C. For low-temperature fabrication process, the thermo-mechanical stability at the interface is secured by modifying the powder characteristics and inserting the adhesive interlayer. The issues associated with the electrical contact and current distribution are resolved by incorporating the perovskite La0.6Sr0.4CoO3-δ (LSC) as a current collecting layer, and the thermal stresses at the interface are relieved by constructing a gradient electrode structure. Consequently, the optimized anode-supported planar cell with an LNO-based cathode exhibits superior performance compared to the reference cell with a conventional cathode in the intermediate-temperature range, which is attributed to the enhanced interfacial process and surface reaction kinetics based on impedance analysis.

  12. Hard X-ray Fluorescence Measurements of Heteroepitaxial Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Cathode Materials

    SciTech Connect

    Davis, Jacob N.; Miara, Lincoln J.; Saraf, Laxmikant V.; Kaspar, Tiffany C.; Gopalan, Srikanth; Pal, Uday B.; Woicik, Joseph C.; Basu, Soumendra N.; Ludwig, Karl F.

    2012-12-01

    Commonly, SOFCs are operated at high temperatures (above 800°C). At these temperatures expensive housing is needed to contain an operating stack as well as coatings to contain the oxidation of the metallic interconnects. Lowering the temperature of an operating device would allow for more conventional materials to be used, thus lowering overall cost. Understanding the surface chemical states of cations in the surface of the SOFC cathode is vital to designing a system that will perform well at lower temperatures. The samples studied were grown by pulsed laser deposition (PLD) at the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). 20% strontium doped lanthanum manganite (LSM-20) was grown on YSZ and NGO (neodymium gallate). The films on YSZ have a fiber texture. LSM-20 on NGO is heteroepitaxial. Lanthanum strontium cobalt ferrite (LSCF-6428) films were grown on LAO and YSZ with a GDC barrier layer. Total X-ray Reflection Fluorescence (TXRF) was used to depth profile the samples. In a typical experiment, the angle of the incident beam is varied though the critical angle. Below the critical angle, the x-ray decays as an evanescent wave and will only penetrate the top few nanometers. TXRF experiments done on LSM films have suggested strontium segregates to the surface and form strontium enriched nanoparticles (1). It should be pointed out that past studies have focused on 30% strontium A-site doping, but this project uses 20% strontium doped lanthanum manganite. XANES and EXAFS data were taken as a function of incoming angle to probe composition as a function of depth. XANES spectra can be difficult to analyze fully. For other materials density functional theory calculations compared to near edge measurements have been a good way to understand the 3d valence electrons (2).

  13. ACTIVE CATHODES FOR SUPER-HIGH POWER DENSITY SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELLS THROUGH SPACE CHARGE EFFECTS

    SciTech Connect

    Anil V. Virkar

    2004-03-08

    This report summarizes the work done during the fifth quarter of the project. Effort was directed in two areas: (1) Further development of the model on the role of connectivity on ionic conductivity of porous bodies, including the role of grain boundaries and space charge region. (2) Fabrication of porous samaria-doped ceria (SDC) and investigation of the effect of thermal treatment on its conductivity. The model developed accounts for transport through three regions: (a) Transport through the bulk of the grain, RI, which includes parallel transport through space charge region. (b) Transport through the space charge region adjacent to the neck (grain boundary), RII. (c) Transport through the structural part of the neck (grain boundary), RIII. The work on the model development involves calculation RI, RII, RIII, and the sum of these three terms, which is the total resistance, as a function of the grain radius ranging between 0.5 and 5 microns and as a function of the relative neck size, described in terms of the angle theta, ranging between 5 and 45{sup o}. Three values of resistivity of the space charge region were chosen; space charge resistivity greater than grain resistivity, equal to grain resistivity, and lower than grain resistivity. Experimental work was conducted on samaria (Sm{sub 2}O{sub 3})-doped ceria (SDC) samples of differing porosity levels, before and after thermal treatment at 1200 C. The conductivity in the annealed samples was lower, consistent with enhanced Debye length. This shows the important role of space charge on ionic transport, and its implications concerning cathode polarization.

  14. Study of acetylene poisoning of Pt cathode on proton exchange membrane fuel cell spatial performance using a segmented cell system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reshetenko, Tatyana V.; St-Pierre, Jean

    2015-08-01

    Acetylene is a welding fuel and precursor for organic synthesis, which requires considering it to be a possible air pollutant. In this work, the spatial performance of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell exposed to 300 ppm C2H2 and different operating currents was studied with a segmented cell system. The injection of C2H2 resulted in a cell performance decrease and redistribution of segments' currents depending on the operating conditions. Performance loss was 20-50 mV at 0.1-0.2 A cm-2 and was accompanied by a rapid redistribution of localized currents. Acetylene exposure at 0.4-1.0 A cm-2 led to a sharp voltage decrease to 0.07-0.13 V and significant changes in current distribution during a transition period, when the cell reached a voltage of 0.55-0.6 V. A recovery of the cell voltage was observed after stopping the C2H2 injection. Spatial electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) data showed different segments' behavior at low and high currents. It was assumed that acetylene oxidation occurs at high cell voltage, while it reduces at low cell potential. A detailed analysis of the current density distribution, its correlation with EIS data and possible C2H2 oxidation/reduction mechanisms are presented and discussed.

  15. Microbial fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Nealson, Kenneth H; Pirbazari, Massoud; Hsu, Lewis

    2013-04-09

    A microbial fuel cell includes an anode compartment with an anode and an anode biocatalyst and a cathode compartment with a cathode and a cathode biocatalyst, with a membrane positioned between the anode compartment and the cathode compartment, and an electrical pathway between the anode and the cathode. The anode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing oxidation of an organic substance, and the cathode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing reduction of an inorganic substance. The reduced organic substance can form a precipitate, thereby removing the inorganic substance from solution. In some cases, the anode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing oxidation of an inorganic substance, and the cathode biocatalyst is capable of catalyzing reduction of an organic or inorganic substance.

  16. Investigation of Sm 0.5Sr 0.5CoO 3- δ/Co 3O 4 composite cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Haizhou; Liu, Huanying; Cong, You; Yang, Weishen

    The electrochemical properties of an Sm 0.5Sr 0.5CoO 3- δ/Co 3O 4 (SSC/Co 3O 4) composite cathode were investigated as a function of the cathode-firing temperature, SSC/Co 3O 4 composition, oxygen partial pressure and CO 2 treatment. The results showed that the composite cathodes had an optimal microstructure at a firing temperature of about 1100 °C, while the optimum Co 3O 4 content in the composite cathode was about 40 wt.%. A single cell with this optimized C 40-1100 cathode exhibited a very low polarization resistance of 0.058 Ω cm 2, and yielded a maximum power density of 1092 mW cm -2 with humidified hydrogen fuel and air oxidant at 600 °C. The maximum power density reached 1452 mW cm -2 when pure oxygen was used as the oxidant for a cell with a C 30-1100 cathode operating at 600 °C due to the enhanced open-circuit voltage and accelerated oxygen surface-exchange rate. X-ray diffraction and thermogravimetric analyses, as well as the electrochemical properties of a CO 2-treated cathode, also implied promising applications of such highly efficient SSC/Co 3O 4 composite cathodes in single-chamber fuel cells with direct hydrocarbon fuels operating at temperatures below 500 °C.

  17. Manganese cobaltite/polypyrrole nanocomposite-based air-cathode for sustainable power generation in the single-chambered microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Khilari, Santimoy; Pandit, Soumya; Das, Debabrata; Pradhan, Debabrata

    2014-04-15

    Manganese cobaltite nanorods (MnCo2O4 NRs) were prepared and tested as potential air-cathode catalyst for the single-chambered microbial fuel cells (sMFC). The power generation of sMFC increases with MnCo2O4 NRs loading to the cathode. The Polypyrrole (PPy) and Vulcan XC were used as conducting support to the MnCo2O4 NRs to form composites either by in situ or by mechanical mixing in the cathode fabrication. The cyclic voltammetry, linear sweep voltammetry and electrochemical impedance studies reveal that the in situ-MnCo2O4 NRs/PPy composite has higher catalytic activity than that of mechanically mixed-MnCo2O4NRs/PPy composite because of higher interfacial contact between MnCo2O4 NRs and PPy. The maximum volumetric power density with in situ-MnCo2O4 NRs/PPy, mechanically mixed-MnCo2O4 NRs/PPy, MnCo2O4 NRs/Vulcan XC and catalyst-free (only Vulcan XC) cathode was measured to be 6.11, 5.05, 4.22, and 1.77 W/m(3), respectively, in the sMFC. This suggests that PPy is not only a better conducting support than that of conventionally used Vulcan XC but also the cathode composite fabrication process is important for enhanced performance. The synergetic effect of MnCo2O4 NRs and PPy was found to play an important role for the improved energy recovery and it could be applied as an efficient and inexpensive cathode catalyst for the sMFC.

  18. REACTIVE FORCE FIELDS FOR Y-DOPED BaZrO3 ELECTROLYTE AND NI-ANODE. POTENTIAL CATHODE MATERIALS FOR APPLICATION IN PROTON CERAMIC FUEL CELLS

    SciTech Connect

    Boris Merinov; Adri van Duin; Sossina Haile; William A. Goddard III

    2004-10-30

    Based on quantum mechanical data obtained for the Y-doped BaZrO{sub 3} electrolyte and Ni-anode Reactive Force Field parameters have been developed for further molecular dynamics simulations of the proton diffusion and electrode/electrolyte interfaces. Electronic and atomic structures of different terminations of the (001) BaZrO{sub 3} surface have been studied using first-principles calculations. Several potential cathode materials for the Y-doped BaZrO{sub 3} system were synthesized via glycine nitrate combustion method. Of the five potential cathode materials examined BaZr{sub 0.40}Pr{sub 0.40}Gd{sub 0.20}O{sub 3} and BaZr{sub 0.60}Y{sub 0.20}Co{sub 0.20}O{sub 3} appear to be the most promising for further applications in proton ceramic fuel cells. Fuel cell test of a Y-doped BaZrO{sub 3} thin film using platinum ink for both electrodes have been performed. The obtained results shows that a robust method for fabricating crack-free thin membranes, as well as methods for sealing anode and cathode chambers, have successfully been developed.

  19. Experimental study of hydrogen purge effects on performance and efficiency of an open-cathode Proton Exchange Membrane fuel cell system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strahl, Stephan; Husar, Attila; Riera, Jordi

    2014-02-01

    The performance and efficiency of an open-cathode PEM fuel cell system in dead-ended anode (DEA) configuration and hydrogen purges is analyzed in this work. Excess water and crossed-over nitrogen in the anode decrease the hydrogen concentration at the catalyst surface, which in turn causes performance losses. Purging the anode with hydrogen removes water and nitrogen and thus recovers the performance. However, this means wasting hydrogen and decreasing overall system efficiency. Gas chromatography was used to detect and quantify the accumulated nitrogen in the anode during DEA operation. The experiments show that the major performance limitation in the studied system is related to water instead of nitrogen. Moreover, oxygen was detected in the anode exhaust gas after long purge intervals, which is an indicator for corrosion of the cathode carbon support structure. Experimental observations revealed that the need for a hydrogen purge strongly depends on the operating conditions and the state-of-health of the fuel cell. It is shown that flooding on the anode and drying of the cathode catalyst layer may occur simultaneously during purged operation. Therefore, purge decisions must be evaluated online, depending on the operating conditions.

  20. Rejuvenation of automotive fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Kim, Yu Seung; Langlois, David A.

    2016-08-23

    A process for rejuvenating fuel cells has been demonstrated to improve the performance of polymer exchange membrane fuel cells with platinum/ionomer electrodes. The process involves dehydrating a fuel cell and exposing at least the cathode of the fuel cell to dry gas (nitrogen, for example) at a temperature higher than the operating temperature of the fuel cell. The process may be used to prolong the operating lifetime of an automotive fuel cell.

  1. Preparation and electrochemical performance of Pr2Ni0.6Cu0.4O4 cathode materials for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yifang; Cheng, Jigui; Jiang, Qiumei; Yang, Junfang; Gao, Jianfeng

    2011-03-01

    Cathode material Pr2Ni0.6Cu0.4O4 (PNCO) for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs) is synthesized by a glycine-nitrate process using Pr6O11, NiO, and CuO powders as raw materials. X-ray diffraction analysis reveals that nanosized Pr2Ni0.6Cu0.4O4 powders with K2NiF4-type structure can be obtained from calcining the precursors at 1000 °C for 3 h. Scanning electron microscopy shows that the sintered PNCO samples have porous microstructure with a porosity of more than 30% and grain size smaller than 2 μm. A maximum conductivity of 130 S cm-1 is obtained from the PNCO samples sintered at 1050 °C. A single fuel cell based on the PNCO cathode with 30 μm Sm0.2Ce0.8O1.9 (SCO) electrolyte film and a 1 mm NiO-SCO anode support is constructed. The ohmic resistance of the single Ni-SCO/SCO/PNCO cell is 0.08 Ω cm2 and the area specific resistance (ASR) value is 0.19 Ω cm2 at 800 °C. Cell performance was also tested using humidified hydrogen (3% H2O) as fuel and air as oxidant. The single cell shows an open circuit voltage of 0.82 V and 0.75 V at 700 °C and 800 °C, respectively. Maximum power density is 238 mW cm-2 and 308 mW cm-2 at 700 °C and 800 °C, respectively. The preliminary tests have shown that Pr2Ni1-xCuxO4materials can be a good candidate for cathode materials of IT-SOFCs.

  2. Effect of chemically modified Vulcan XC-72R on the performance of air-breathing cathode in a single-chamber microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Duteanu, N; Erable, B; Senthil Kumar, S M; Ghangrekar, M M; Scott, K

    2010-07-01

    The catalytic activity of modified carbon powder (Vulcan XC-72R) for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in an air-breathing cathode of a microbial fuel cell (MFC) has been investigated. Chemical modification was carried out by using various chemicals, namely 5% nitric acid, 0.2N phosphoric acid, 0.2N potassium hydroxide and 10% hydrogen peroxide. Electrochemical study was performed for ORR of these modified carbon materials in the buffer solution pH range of 6-7.5 in the anodic compartment. Although, these treatments influenced the surface properties of the carbon material, as evident from the SEM-EDX analysis, treatment with H(2)PO(4), KOH, and H(2)O(2) did not show significant activity during the electrochemical test. The HNO(3) treated Vulcan demonstrated significant ORR activity and when used in the single-chamber MFC cathode, current densities (1115mA/m(2), at 5.6mV) greater than those for a Pt-supported un-treated carbon cathode were achieved. However, the power density for the latter was higher. Such chemically modified carbon material can be a cheaper alternative for expensive platinum catalyst used in MFC cathode construction.

  3. High temperature phase stabilities and electrochemical properties of InBaCo4-xZnxO7 cathodes for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Jung-Hyun; Young Nam, Kim; Bi, Zhonghe; Manthiram, Arumugam; Paranthaman, Mariappan Parans; Huq, Ashfia

    2011-01-01

    InBaCo4-xZnxO7 oxides have been synthesized and characterized as cathode materials for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFC). The effect of Zn substitution for Co on the structure, phase stability, thermal expansion, and electrochemical properties of the InBaCo4-xZnxO7 has been investigated. The increase in the Zn content from x = 1 to 1.5 improves the high temperature phase stability at 600 oC and 700 oC for 100 h, and chemical stability against a Gd0.2Ce0.8O1.9 (GDC) electrolyte. Thermal expansion coefficient (TEC) values of the InBaCo4-xZnxO7 (x = 1, 1.5, 2) specimens were determined to be 8.6 10-6 9.6 10-6 /oC in the range of 80 900 oC, which provides good thermal expansion compatibility with the standard SOFC electrolyte materials. The InBaCo4-xZnxO7 + GDC (50:50 wt. %) composite cathodes exhibit improved cathode performances compared to those obtained from the simple InBaCo4-xZnxO7 cathodes due to the extended triple-phase boundary (TPB) and enhanced oxide-ion conductivity through the GDC portion in the composites.

  4. The addition of ortho-hexagon nano spinel Co3O4 to improve the performance of activated carbon air cathode microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Ge, Baochao; Li, Kexun; Fu, Zhou; Pu, Liangtao; Zhang, Xi

    2015-11-01

    Commercial Co3O4 and ortho-hexagon spinel nano-Co3O4 (OHSNC) were doped in the AC at a different percentage (5%, 10% and 15%) to enhance the performance of microbial fuel cell (MFC). The maximum power density of MFC with 10% OHSNC doped cathode was 1500±14 mW m(-2), which was 97.36% and 41.24% higher than that with the bare AC air cathode and commercial Co3O4 respectively. The electrocatalytic behavior for their better performance was discussed in detail with the help of various structural and electrochemical techniques. The OHSNC was characterized via X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The results showed that the improved performance owed to the enhancement of both kinetics activity and the number of electron transfer in the ORR, and the internal resistance was largely reduced. Therefore, OHSNC was proved to be an excellent cathodic catalyst in AC air cathode MFC.

  5. Overcoming phase instability of RBaCo2O5+ (R = Y and Ho) by Sr substitution for application as cathodes in solid oxide fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Jung-Hyun; Young Nam, Kim; Bi, Zhonghe; Manthiram, Arumugam; Paranthaman, Mariappan Parans; Huq, Ashfia

    2013-01-01

    Phase instabilities of the RBaCo2O5+ (R = Y and Ho) layered-perovskites and their decompositions into RCoO3 and BaCoO3-z at 800 oC in air were investigated. This will restrict their high temperature applications such as cathodes in solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC). However, appropriate amount of Sr substitution ( 60 % for R = Y and 70 % for R = Ho) for Ba successfully stabilized the R(Ba1-xSrx)Co2O5+ phase at elevated temperatures. This can be explained by decreasing oxygen vacancies at R-O layer, decreasing R-O bonding length, and consequent improvement of structural integrity. In addition, the Sr substitution (x = 0.6 - 1.0) for Ba provided added benefit with respect to the chemical stability against Ce0.8Gd0.2O1.9 (GDC) electrolyte, which is a critical requirement for the cathodes in SOFC. Among the various compositions investigated, the Y(Ba0.3Sr0.7)Co2O5+ + GDC composite cathode delivered the optimum electrochemical performances with a stable phase demonstrating the potential as a cathode in SOFC.

  6. An efficient electrocatalyst as cathode material for solid oxide fuel cells: BaFe0·95Sn0·05O3-δ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Feifei; Ni, Meng; He, Wei; Chen, Yubo; Yang, Guangming; Chen, Dengjie; Shao, Zongping

    2016-09-01

    The B-site substitution with the minor amount of tin in BaFeO3-δ parent oxide is expected to stabilize a single perovskite lattice structure. In this study, a composition of BaFe0·95Sn0·05O3-δ (BFS) as a new cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs) is synthesized and characterized. Special attention is paid to the exploration of some basic properties including phase structure, oxygen non-stoichiometry, electrical conductivity, oxygen bulk diffusion coefficient, and surface exchange coefficient, which are of significant importance to the electrochemical activity of cathode materials. BFS holds a single cubic perovskite structure over temperature range of cell operation, determined by in-situ X-ray diffraction and scanning transmission electron microscope. A high oxygen vacancy concentration at cell operating temperatures is observed by combining thermo-gravimetric data and iodometric titration result. Furthermore, electrical conductivity relaxation measurement illustrates the fast oxygen bulk diffusion and surface exchange kinetics. Accordingly, testing cells based on BFS cathode material demonstrate the low polarization resistance of 0.033 Ω cm2 and high peak power density of 1033 mW cm-2 at 700 °C, as well as a relatively stable long-term operation for ∼300 h. The results obtained suggest that BFS perovskite oxide holds a great promise as an oxygen reduction electrocatalyst for IT-SOFCs.

  7. Analyzing Structural Changes of Fe-N-C Cathode Catalysts in PEM Fuel Cell by Mößbauer Spectroscopy of Complete Membrane Electrode Assemblies.

    PubMed

    Kramm, Ulrike I; Lefèvre, Michel; Bogdanoff, Peter; Schmeißer, Dieter; Dodelet, Jean-Pol

    2014-11-01

    The applicability of analyzing by Mößbauer spectroscopy the structural changes of Fe-N-C catalysts that have been tested at the cathode of membrane electrode assemblies in proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells is demonstrated. The Mößbauer characterization of powders of the same catalysts was recently described in our previous publication. A possible change of the iron species upon testing in fuel cell was investigated here by Mößbauer spectroscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray cross-sectional imaging, and neutron activation analysis. Our results show that the absorption probability of γ rays by the iron nuclei in Fe-N-C is strongly affected by the presence of Nafion and water content. A detailed investigation of the effect of an oxidizing treatment (1.2 V) of the non-noble cathode in PEM fuel cell indicates that the observed activity decay is mainly attributable to carbon oxidation causing a leaching of active iron sites hosted in the carbon matrix.

  8. Carbon-supported Pd-Pt cathode electrocatalysts for proton exchange membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Yongfu; Zhang, Huamin; Zhong, Hexiang; Xu, Ting; Jin, Hong

    A series of carbon-supported Pd-Pt alloy (Pd-Pt/C) catalysts for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) with low-platinum content are synthesized via a modified sodium borohydride reduction method. The structure of as-prepared catalysts is characterized by powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) and transmission electron microscope (TEM) measurements. The prepared Pd-Pt/C catalysts with alloy form show face-centered-cubic (FCC) structure. The metal particles of Pd-Pt/C catalysts with mean size of around 4-5 nm are uniformly dispersed on the carbon support. The electrocatalytic activities for ORR of these catalysts are investigated by rotating disk electrode (RDE), cyclic voltammetry (CV), single cell measurements and electrochemical impedance spectra (EIS) measurements. The results suggest that the electrocatalytic activities of Pd-Pt/C catalysts with low platinum are comparable to that of the commercial Pt/C with the same metal loading. The maximum power density of MEA with a Pd-Pt/C catalyst, the Pd/Pt mass ratio of which is 7:3, is about 1040 mW cm -2.

  9. Porous nitrogen-doped carbon nanosheet on graphene as metal-free catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction in air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wen, Qing; Wang, Shaoyun; Yan, Jun; Cong, Lijie; Chen, Ye; Xi, Hongyuan

    2014-02-01

    Porous nitrogen-doped carbon nanosheet on graphene (PNCN) was used as an alternative cathode catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Here we report a novel, low-cost, scalable, synthetic method for preparation of PNCN via the carbonization of graphite oxide-polyaniline hybrid (GO-PANI), subsequently followed by KOH activation treatment. Due to its high concentration of nitrogen and high specific surface area, PNCN exhibited an excellent catalytic activity for ORR. As a result, the maximum power density of 1159.34mWm(-2) obtained with PNCN catalyst was higher than that of Pt/C catalyst (858.49mWm(-2)) in a MFC. Therefore, porous nitrogen-doped carbon nanosheet could be a good alternative to Pt catalyst in MFCs.

  10. Porous nitrogen-doped carbon nanosheet on graphene as metal-free catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction in air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wen, Qing; Wang, Shaoyun; Yan, Jun; Cong, Lijie; Chen, Ye; Xi, Hongyuan

    2014-02-01

    Porous nitrogen-doped carbon nanosheet on graphene (PNCN) was used as an alternative cathode catalyst for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in air-cathode microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Here we report a novel, low-cost, scalable, synthetic method for preparation of PNCN via the carbonization of graphite oxide-polyaniline hybrid (GO-PANI), subsequently followed by KOH activation treatment. Due to its high concentration of nitrogen and high specific surface area, PNCN exhibited an excellent catalytic activity for ORR. As a result, the maximum power density of 1159.34mWm(-2) obtained with PNCN catalyst was higher than that of Pt/C catalyst (858.49mWm(-2)) in a MFC. Therefore, porous nitrogen-doped carbon nanosheet could be a good alternative to Pt catalyst in MFCs. PMID:24239870

  11. Experimental results with fuel cell start-up and shut-down. Impact of type of carbon for cathode catalyst support

    SciTech Connect

    Lottin, Olivier; Dillet, Jerome; Maranzana, Gael; Abbou, Sofyane; Didierjean, Sophie; Lamibrac, Adrien; Borup, Rodney L.; Mukundan, Rangachary; Spernjak, Dusan

    2015-09-14

    Separate testing protocols for fuel cell startups and shutdowns were developed to distinguish between their effects on reverse currents and CO2 evolution. The internal currents and the local potentials were measured with different membrane-electrode assemblies (MEAs): we examined the influence of the type of carbon for cathode catalyst support as well as the mitigating effect of low anode Pt loading. In conclusion, significant differences were observed and the experiments also confirmed previous results that the evolved CO2 accounts for less than 25% of the total exchanged charge.

  12. Experimental results with fuel cell start-up and shut-down. Impact of type of carbon for cathode catalyst support

    DOE PAGES

    Lottin, Olivier; Dillet, Jerome; Maranzana, Gael; Abbou, Sofyane; Didierjean, Sophie; Lamibrac, Adrien; Borup, Rodney L.; Mukundan, Rangachary; Spernjak, Dusan

    2015-09-14

    Separate testing protocols for fuel cell startups and shutdowns were developed to distinguish between their effects on reverse currents and CO2 evolution. The internal currents and the local potentials were measured with different membrane-electrode assemblies (MEAs): we examined the influence of the type of carbon for cathode catalyst support as well as the mitigating effect of low anode Pt loading. In conclusion, significant differences were observed and the experiments also confirmed previous results that the evolved CO2 accounts for less than 25% of the total exchanged charge.

  13. Corrosion free phosphoric acid fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Wright, Maynard K.

    1990-01-01

    A phosphoric acid fuel cell with an electrolyte fuel system which supplies electrolyte via a wick disposed adjacent a cathode to an absorbent matrix which transports the electrolyte to portions of the cathode and an anode which overlaps the cathode on all sides to prevent corrosion within the cell.

  14. Effects of short-side-chain perfluorosulfonic acid ionomers as binders on the performance of low Pt loading fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Young-Chul; Kakinuma, Katsuyoshi; Uchida, Hiroyuki; Watanabe, Masahiro; Uchida, Makoto

    2015-02-01

    We investigated the effects of short-side-chain (SSC) perfluorosulfonic acid ionomers on the electrochemical properties, fuel cell performance and ionomer distribution of a highly dispersed Pt/GCB catalyst with a low Pt loading, 0.05 mg cm-2. The SSC ionomers in the cathode catalyst layers (CLs) resulted in an improvement of the Pt utilization (UPt) and Pt effectiveness (EfPt) values compared with those for the conventional long-side-chain (LSC) ionomer. Furthermore, the SSC ionomers with high ion exchange capacity (IEC), e.g., SSC-1.43 and SSC-1.80 ionomers, exhibited significantly enhanced cell performance under low to medium relative humidity (RH) conditions. This result is ascribed to the higher proton conductivity of the SSC ionomers and more effective trapping of water that is produced during the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) than those of the LSC ionomer. It was also found that the SSC ionomers showed better continuity and uniformity on the Pt and carbon particles than the LSC ionomer, which might have led to improvement of both the mass transport and the proton-conducting network in the CLs. The application of the SSC ionomers as binders demonstrated an increase of the performance at the low Pt loading fuel cell cathode over a wide range of humidity.

  15. Fuel cell gas management system

    DOEpatents

    DuBose, Ronald Arthur

    2000-01-11

    A fuel cell gas management system including a cathode humidification system for transferring latent and sensible heat from an exhaust stream to the cathode inlet stream of the fuel cell; an anode humidity retention system for maintaining the total enthalpy of the anode stream exiting the fuel cell equal to the total enthalpy of the anode inlet stream; and a cooling water management system having segregated deionized water and cooling water loops interconnected by means of a brazed plate heat exchanger.

  16. Characterization and evaluation of double perovskites LnBaCoFeO5+δ (Ln = Pr and Nd) as intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Fangjun; Xu, Huawei; Long, Wen; Shen, Yu; He, Tianmin

    2013-12-01

    Double perovskites LnBaCoFeO5+δ (Ln = Pr and Nd, PBCF and NBCF) are comparatively investigated as potential cathode materials for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). LnBaCoFeO5+δ materials are chemically compatible with La0.9Sr0.1Ga0.8Mg0.2O3-δ (LSGM) electrolyte at temperatures below 1000 °C. Fe and Co ions in LnBaCoFeO5+δ exist in two oxidation states, 3+ and 4+. Pr ions are found in PBCF mostly as Pr3+. Thermal expansion coefficients (TECs) of PBCF and NBCF are 21.0 × 10-6 and 19.5 × 10-6 K-1, respectively, between 30 and 1000 °C; these are lower than the TECs of undoped LnBaCo2O5+δ. The best electrical conductivity for both materials is observed near 350 °C: 321 and 172 S cm-1 for PBCF and NBCF, respectively. Polarization resistances of PBCF and NBCF cathodes on LSGM electrolyte are 0.049 and 0.062 Ω cm2 at 800 °C, respectively. Maximum power densities of the single-cell with Ni/SDC as anode on a 0.3 mm-thick LSGM electrolyte reach 749 and 669 mW cm-2 for PBCF and NBCF cathodes at 800 °C, respectively. As cathodes for application in IT-SOFCs, the performance of PBCF and NBCF double perovskites is promising.

  17. Ab initio study of vacancy formation in cubic LaMnO3 and SmCoO3 as cathode materials in solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Olsson, Emilia; Aparicio-Anglès, Xavier; de Leeuw, Nora H

    2016-07-01

    Doped LaMnO3 and SmCoO3 are important solid oxide fuel cell cathode materials. The main difference between these two perovskites is that SmCoO3 has proven to be a more efficient cathode material than LaMnO3 at lower temperatures. In order to explain the difference in efficiency, we need to gain insight into the materials' properties at the atomic level. However, while LaMnO3 has been widely studied, ab initio studies on SmCoO3 are rare. Hence, in this paper, we perform a comparative DFT + U study of the structural, electronic, and magnetic properties of these two perovskites. To that end, we first determined a suitable Hubbard parameter for the Co d-electrons to obtain a proper description of SmCoO3 that fully agrees with the available experimental data. We next evaluated the impact of oxygen and cation vacancies on the geometry, electronic, and magnetic properties. Oxygen vacancies strongly alter the electronic and magnetic structures of SmCoO3, but barely affect LaMnO3. However, due to their high formation energy, their concentrations in the material are very low and need to be induced by doping. Studying the cation vacancy concentration showed that the formation of cation vacancies is less energetically favorable than oxygen vacancies and would thus not markedly influence the performance of the cathode. PMID:27394117

  18. An innovative architectural design to enhance the electrochemical performance of La2NiO4+δ cathodes for solid oxide fuel cell applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, Rakesh K.; Burriel, Mónica; Dessemond, Laurent; Martin, Vincent; Bassat, Jean-Marc; Djurado, Elisabeth

    2016-06-01

    An architectural design of the cathode microstructure based on combining electrostatic spray deposition (ESD) and screen-printing (SP) techniques has demonstrated to be an innovative strategy to enhance the electrochemical properties of La2NiO4+δ (LNO) as oxygen electrode on Ce0.9Gd0.1O2-δ (CGO) electrolyte for solid oxide fuel cells. For this purpose, the influence of the ESD process parameters on the microstructure has been systematically investigated. Electrochemical performances of four selected cathode microstructures are investigated: (i) 3-D coral nanocrystalline (average particle size ∼ 100 nm) LNO film grown by ESD; (ii) 3-D coral nanocrystalline film (average particle size ∼ 150 nm) grown by ESD with a continuous nanometric dense interface; (iii) porous screen-printed LNO film (average particle size ∼ 400 nm); and (iv) 3-D coral nanocrystalline film (average particle size ∼ 150 nm) with a continuous nanometric dense interface prepared by ESD topped by a LNO current collector prepared by SP. A significant reduction in the polarization resistance (Rpol) is obtained (0.08 Ω cm2 at 700 °C) for 3-D coral topped by the SP layer. Moreover LNO is found to be stable and compatible with CGO up to 800 °C for only 10 days duration in air, making it potentially suitable for SOFCs cathode application.

  19. An easy and innovative method based on spray-pyrolysis deposition to obtain high efficiency cathodes for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    dos Santos-Gómez, L.; Porras-Vázquez, J. M.; Martín, F.; Ramos-Barrado, J. R.; Losilla, E. R.; Marrero-López, D.

    2016-07-01

    A novel electrode preparation method based on the spray-pyrolysis deposition of metal nitrate solutions onto a porous electrolyte scaffold is proposed. This method has been proved with different cathode materials, usually used in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells, such as La0.8Sr0.2MnO3-δ and La0.6Sr0.4Co1-xFexO3-δ (x = 0, 0.2, 0.8 and 1). The electrode microstructure is composed by two layers; the inner layer is a porous electrolyte scaffold homogeneously coated by cathode nanoparticles, providing an increased number of triple phase boundary sites for oxygen reduction, whereas, the top layer is formed by only cathode nanoparticles and acts mainly as a current collector. Polarization resistance values as low as 0.07 and 1.0 Ω cm2 at 600 and 450 °C, respectively, are obtained at open circuit voltage. This alternative approach has several advantages with respect to the traditional wet infiltration method for large area electrode fabrication, such as higher reproducibility, shorter preparation time in a single thermal deposition step, and easy implementation at industrial scale as a continuous process.

  20. Ab initio study of vacancy formation in cubic LaMnO3 and SmCoO3 as cathode materials in solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olsson, Emilia; Aparicio-Anglès, Xavier; de Leeuw, Nora H.

    2016-07-01

    Doped LaMnO3 and SmCoO3 are important solid oxide fuel cell cathode materials. The main difference between these two perovskites is that SmCoO3 has proven to be a more efficient cathode material than LaMnO3 at lower temperatures. In order to explain the difference in efficiency, we need to gain insight into the materials' properties at the atomic level. However, while LaMnO3 has been widely studied, ab initio studies on SmCoO3 are rare. Hence, in this paper, we perform a comparative DFT + U study of the structural, electronic, and magnetic properties of these two perovskites. To that end, we first determined a suitable Hubbard parameter for the Co d-electrons to obtain a proper description of SmCoO3 that fully agrees with the available experimental data. We next evaluated the impact of oxygen and cation vacancies on the geometry, electronic, and magnetic properties. Oxygen vacancies strongly alter the electronic and magnetic structures of SmCoO3, but barely affect LaMnO3. However, due to their high formation energy, their concentrations in the material are very low and need to be induced by doping. Studying the cation vacancy concentration showed that the formation of cation vacancies is less energetically favorable than oxygen vacancies and would thus not markedly influence the performance of the cathode.

  1. Cerium and niobium doped SrCoO3-δ as a potential cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Shouguo; Feng, Shuangjiu; Lu, Qiliang; Li, Yide; Wang, Hong; Wang, Chunchang

    2014-04-01

    Sr0.9Ce0.1Co0.9Nb0.1O3-δ (SCCN) has been synthesized using solid state reaction, and investigated as a new cathode material for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (ITSOFCs). SCCN material exhibits sufficiently high electronic conductivity and excellent chemical compatibility with SDC electrolyte. Highly charged Ce4+ and Nb5+ successfully stabilize the perovskite structure to avoid order-disorder phase transition. The electrical conductivity reaches a high value of 516 S cm-1 at 300 °C in air. The area specific resistances of the SCCN-50 wt.% Ce0.8Sm0.2O1.9 (SDC) cathode are as low as 0.027, 0.049, and 0.094 Ω cm2 at 700, 650, and 600 °C, respectively, with the corresponding peak power densities of 1074, 905, and 589 mW cm-2. A relatively low thermal expansion coefficient of SCCN-SDC is 14.3 × 10-6 K-1 in air. All these results imply that SCCN holds tremendous promise as a cathode material for ITSOFCs.

  2. N-type Cu2O doped activated carbon as catalyst for improving power generation of air cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xi; Li, Kexun; Yan, Pengyu; Liu, Ziqi; Pu, Liangtao

    2015-01-01

    A novel n-type Cu2O doped activated carbon (AC) air cathode (Cu/AC) was developed as an alternative to Pt electrode for oxygen reduction in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). The maximum power density of MFCs using this novel air cathode was as high as 1390±76mWm(-2), almost 59% higher than the bare AC air cathode. Specifically, the resistance including total resistance and charge transfer resistance significantly decreased comparing to the control. Tafel curve also showed the faster electro-transfer kinetics of Cu/AC with exchange current density of 1.03×10(-3)Acm(-2), which was 69% higher than the control. Ribbon-like Cu2O was deposited on the surface of AC with the mesopore surface area increasing. Cubic Cu2O crystals exclusively expose (111) planes with the interplanar crystal spacing of 2.48Å, which was the dominate active sites for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). N-type Cu2O with oxygen vacancies played crucial roles in electrochemical catalytic activity.

  3. Iron phthalocyanine supported on amino-functionalized multi-walled carbon nanotube as an alternative cathodic oxygen catalyst in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Yong; Zhao, Bo; Jeon, Yongwon; Zhong, Shengkui; Zhou, Shungui; Kim, Sunghyun

    2011-05-01

    Amino-functionalized multi-walled carbon nanotube (a-MWCNT)-supported iron phthalocyanine (FePc) (a-MWCNT/FePc) has been investigated as a catalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in an air-cathode single-chambered microbial fuel cell (MFC). Cyclic and linear sweep voltammogram are employed to investigate the electrocatalytic activity of the a-MWCNT/FePc for ORR. The maximum power density of 601 mWm(-2) is achieved from a MFC with the a-MWCNT/FePc cathode, which is the highest energy output compared to those MFCs with other materials supported FePc, such as carbon black, pristine MWCNT (p-MWCNT), carboxylic acid functionalized MWCNT (c-MWCNT), and even with a Pt/C cathode. Furthermore, cyclic voltammetry performed on the a-MWCNT/FePc electrode suggests that the a-MWCNT/FePc has an electrochemical activity for ORR via a four-electron pathway in a neutral pH solution. This work provides a potential alternative to Pt in MFCs for sustainable energy generation.

  4. Exchange current model for (La0.8Sr0.2)0.95MnO3 (LSM) porous cathode for solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyoshi, Kota; Miyamae, Takuma; Iwai, Hiroshi; Saito, Motohiro; Kishimoto, Masashi; Yoshida, Hideo

    2016-05-01

    In this paper, we propose an empirical formula for i0,TPB, the exchange current density per unit triple-phase boundary (TPB) length, for porous lanthanum strontium manganite (LSM) cathodes of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs); the evaluation of i0,TPB is of crucial importance in numerical simulations of electrodes based on reconstructed microstructures obtained by a dual beam focused ion beam scanning electron microscopy (FIB-SEM) and tomography techniques. To derive a widely applicable empirical formula for i0,TPB, electrochemical measurements of porous LSM cathodes are conducted under various oxygen partial pressures (0.05-0.25 atm) and temperatures (800-950 °C). By comparing the derived formula with that derived from a thin and dense patterned LSM electrode used in previous studies, it is found that at an air temperature of 800 °C, i0,TPB derived from a porous LSM cathode is approximately 40% smaller than that for the patterned electrode. This can be attributed to the fact that the electrochemical reaction in thin and dense electrodes can occur not only at the TPBs but also at the LSM surface owing to the non-negligible ionic conductivity of LSM. The derived formula is also applied to a three-dimensional numerical simulation to confirm its validity.

  5. A simple preparation of very high methanol tolerant cathode electrocatalyst for direct methanol fuel cell based on polymer-coated carbon nanotube/platinum

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Zehui; Nakashima, Naotoshi

    2015-01-01

    The development of a durable and methanol tolerant electrocatalyst with a high oxygen reduction reaction activity is highly important for the cathode side of direct methanol fuel cells. Here, we describe a simple and novel methodology to fabricate a practically applicable electrocatalyst with a high methanol tolerance based on poly[2,2′-(2,6-pyridine)-5,5′-bibenzimidazole]-wrapped multi-walled carbon nanotubes, on which Pt nanoparticles have been deposited, then coated with poly(vinylphosphonic acid) (PVPA). The polymer coated electrocatalyst showed an ~3.3 times higher oxygen reduction reaction activity compared to that of the commercial CB/Pt and methanol tolerance in the presence of methanol to the electrolyte due to a 50% decreased methanol adsorption on the Pt after coating with the PVPA. Meanwhile, the peroxide generation of the PVPA coated electrocatalyst was as low as 0.8% with 2 M methanol added to the electrolyte, which was much lower than those of the non-PVPA-coated electrocatalyst (7.5%) and conventional CB/Pt (20.5%). Such a high methanol tolerance is very important for the design of a direct methanol fuel cell cathode electrocatalyst with a high performance. PMID:26192397

  6. High performance cobalt-free Cu1.4Mn1.6O4 spinel oxide as an intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cell cathode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhen, Shuying; Sun, Wang; Li, Peiqian; Tang, Guangze; Rooney, David; Sun, Kening; Ma, Xinxin

    2016-05-01

    In this work Cu1.4Mn1.6O4 (CMO) spinel oxide is prepared and evaluated as a novel cobalt-free cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). Single phase CMO powder with cubic structure is identified using XRD. XPS results confirm that mixed Cu+/Cu2+ and Mn3+/Mn4+ couples exist in the CMO sample, and a maximum conductivity of 78 S cm-1 is achieved at 800 °C. Meanwhile, CMO oxide shows good thermal and chemical compatibility with a 10 mol% Sc2O3 stabilized ZrO2 (ScSZ) electrolyte material. Impedance spectroscopy measurements reveals that CMO exhibits a low polarization resistance of 0.143 Ω cm2 at 800 °C. Furthermore, a Ni-ScSZ/ScSZ/CMO single cell demonstrates a maximum power density of 1076 mW cm-2 at 800 °C under H2 (3% H2O) as the fuel and ambient air as the oxidant. These results indicate that Cu1.4Mn1.6O4 is a superior and promising cathode material for IT-SOFCs.

  7. Chalcogen catalysts for polymer electrolyte fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Zelenay, Piotr; Choi, Jong-Ho; Alonso-Vante, Nicolas; Wieckowski, Andrzej; Cao, Dianxue

    2010-08-24

    A methanol-tolerant cathode catalyst and a membrane electrode assembly for fuel cells that includes such a cathode catalyst. The cathode catalyst includes a support having at least one transition metal in elemental form and a chalcogen disposed on the support. Methods of making the cathode catalyst and membrane electrode assembly are also described.

  8. Chalcogen catalysts for polymer electrolyte fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Alonso-Vante, Nicolas; Zelenay, Piotr; Choi, Jong-Ho; Wieckowski, Andrzej; Cao, Dianxue

    2009-09-15

    A methanol-tolerant cathode catalyst and a membrane electrode assembly for fuel cells that includes such a cathode catalyst. The cathode catalyst includes a support having at least one transition metal in elemental form and a chalcogen disposed on the support. Methods of making the cathode catalyst and membrane electrode assembly are also described.

  9. Layer-structured LiNi0.8Co0.2O2: A new triple (H+/O2-/e-) conducting cathode for low temperature proton conducting solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Liangdong; Su, Pei-Chen

    2016-02-01

    Solid oxide fuel cells with proton conducting electrolytes (H-SOFCs) show great potential for more efficient energy conversion over their oxygen ionic conducting counterparts at temperatures below 650 °C, providing a comparably high performance cathode material can be available. A brief review of current development of cathode materials shows that materials with triple (oxygen ionic, protonic, and electronic) conducting properties are most promising for H-SOFCs. In this work, a triple-conducting LiNi0.8Co0.2O2 (LNCO) with layered structure, allowing simultaneous conduction of intrinsic oxygen ion and electron as well as the extrinsic proton, is proposed as a cathode material for H-SOFC. The electrochemical impedance spectroscopy analysis of LNCO shows the good oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity with a considerably low activation energy of 0.88 eV, and an evident water uptake capability those facilitate the cathode reaction process. Fuel cells using LNCO cathode on a BaZr0.1Ce0.7Y0.2O3 proton-conducting electrolyte render a peak power density of 410 mW cm-2 at 650 °C under H2/air condition, which is higher than most of the typical cathode materials reported with similar cell configurations. This work also demonstrated a new series of simple and low cost cathode materials simultaneously possessing interesting triple-conduction and good ORR activities for low temperature H-SOFCs.

  10. Highly porous PEM fuel cell cathodes based on low density carbon aerogels as Pt-support: Experimental study of the mass-transport losses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marie, Julien; Chenitz, Regis; Chatenet, Marian; Berthon-Fabry, Sandrine; Cornet, Nathalie; Achard, Patrick

    Carbon aerogels exhibiting high porous volumes and high surface areas, differentiated by their pore-size distributions were used as Pt-supports in the cathode catalytic layer of H 2/air-fed PEM fuel cell. The cathodes were tested as 50 cm 2 membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs). The porous structure of the synthesized catalytic layers was impacted by the nanostructure of the Pt-doped carbon aerogels (Pt/CAs). In this paper thus we present an experimental study aiming at establishing links between the porous structure of the cathode catalytic layers and the MEAs performances. For that purpose, the polarization curves of the MEAs were decomposed in 3 contributions: the kinetic loss, the ohmic loss and the mass-transport loss. We showed that the MEAs made with the different carbon aerogels had similar kinetic activities (low current density performance) but very different mass-transport voltage losses. It was found that the higher the pore-size of the initial carbon aerogel, the higher the mass-transport voltage losses. Supported by our porosimetry (N 2-adsorption and Hg-porosimetry) measurement, we interpret this apparent contradiction as the consequence of the more important Nafion penetration into the carbon aeorogel with larger pore-size. Indeed, the catalytic layers made from the larger pore-size carbon aerogel had lower porosities. We thus show in this work that carbon aerogels are materials with tailored nanostructured structure which can be used as model materials for experimentally testing the optimization of the PEM fuel cell catalytic layers.

  11. Stabilizing platinum in phosphoric acid fuel cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Remick, R. J.

    1982-01-01

    Platinum sintering on phosphoric acid fuel cell cathodes is discussed. The cathode of the phosphoric acid fuel cell uses a high surface area platinum catalyst dispersed on a conductive carbon support to minimize both cathode polarization and fabrication costs. During operation, however, the active surface area of these electrodes decreases, which in turn leads to decreased cell performance. This loss of active surface area is a major factor in the degradation of fuel cell performance over time.

  12. Fuel cell system with interconnect

    DOEpatents

    Goettler, Richard; Liu, Zhien

    2015-03-10

    The present invention includes a fuel cell system having a plurality of adjacent electrochemical cells formed of an anode layer, a cathode layer spaced apart from the anode layer, and an electrolyte layer disposed between the anode layer and the cathode layer. The fuel cell system also includes at least one interconnect, the interconnect being structured to conduct free electrons between adjacent electrochemical cells. Each interconnect includes a primary conductor embedded within the electrolyte layer and structured to conduct the free electrons.

  13. Fuel cell system with interconnect

    DOEpatents

    Goettler, Richard; Liu, Zhien

    2015-08-11

    The present invention includes a fuel cell system having a plurality of adjacent electrochemical cells formed of an anode layer, a cathode layer spaced apart from the anode layer, and an electrolyte layer disposed between the anode layer and the cathode layer. The fuel cell system also includes at least one interconnect, the interconnect being structured to conduct free electrons between adjacent electrochemical cells. Each interconnect includes a primary conductor embedded within the electrolyte layer and structured to conduct the free electrons.

  14. Fuel cell system with interconnect

    DOEpatents

    Liu, Zhien; Goettler, Richard

    2015-09-29

    The present invention includes a fuel cell system having a plurality of adjacent electrochemical cells formed of an anode layer, a cathode layer spaced apart from the anode layer, and an electrolyte layer disposed between the anode layer and the cathode layer. The fuel cell system also includes at least one interconnect, the interconnect being structured to conduct free electrons between adjacent electrochemical cells. Each interconnect includes a primary conductor embedded within the electrolyte layer and structured to conduct the free electrons.

  15. Electrorefining cell with parallel electrode/concentric cylinder cathode

    DOEpatents

    Gay, E.C.; Miller, W.E.; Laidler, J.J.

    1997-07-22

    A cathode-anode arrangement for use in an electrolytic cell is adapted for electrochemically refining spent nuclear fuel from a nuclear reactor and recovering purified uranium for further treatment and possible recycling as a fresh blanket or core fuel in a nuclear reactor. The arrangement includes a plurality of inner anodic dissolution baskets that are each attached to a respective support rod, are submerged in a molten lithium halide salt, and are rotationally displaced. An inner hollow cylindrical-shaped cathode is concentrically disposed about the inner anodic dissolution baskets. Concentrically disposed about the inner cathode in a spaced manner are a plurality of outer anodic dissolution baskets, while an outer hollow cylindrical-shaped is disposed about the outer anodic dissolution baskets. Uranium is transported from the anode baskets and deposited in a uniform cylindrical shape on the inner and outer cathode cylinders by rotating the anode baskets within the molten lithium halide salt. Scrapers located on each anode basket abrade and remove the spent fuel deposits on the surfaces of the inner and outer cathode cylinders, with the spent fuel falling to the bottom of the cell for removal. Cell resistance is reduced and uranium deposition rate enhanced by increasing the electrode area and reducing the anode-cathode spacing. Collection efficiency is enhanced by trapping and recovery of uranium dendrites scrapped off of the cylindrical cathodes which may be greater in number than two. 12 figs.

  16. Electrorefining cell with parallel electrode/concentric cylinder cathode

    DOEpatents

    Gay, Eddie C.; Miller, William E.; Laidler, James J.

    1997-01-01

    A cathode-anode arrangement for use in an electrolytic cell is adapted for electrochemically refining spent nuclear fuel from a nuclear reactor and recovering purified uranium for further treatment and possible recycling as a fresh blanket or core fuel in a nuclear reactor. The arrangement includes a plurality of inner anodic dissolution baskets that are each attached to a respective support rod, are submerged in a molten lithium halide salt, and are rotationally displaced. An inner hollow cylindrical-shaped cathode is concentrically disposed about the inner anodic dissolution baskets. Concentrically disposed about the inner cathode in a spaced manner are a plurality of outer anodic dissolution baskets, while an outer hollow cylindrical-shaped is disposed about the outer anodic dissolution baskets. Uranium is transported from the anode baskets and deposited in a uniform cylindrical shape on the inner and outer cathode cylinders by rotating the anode baskets within the molten lithium halide salt. Scrapers located on each anode basket abrade and remove the spent fuel deposits on the surfaces of the inner and outer cathode cylinders, with the spent fuel falling to the bottom of the cell for removal. Cell resistance is reduced and uranium deposition rate enhanced by increasing the electrode area and reducing the anode-cathode spacing. Collection efficiency is enhanced by trapping and recovery of uranium dendrites scrapped off of the cylindrical cathodes which may be greater in number than two.

  17. Electricity generation coupled with wastewater treatment using a microbial fuel cell composed of a modified cathode with a ceramic membrane and cellulose acetate film.

    PubMed

    Seo, Ha Na; Lee, Woo Jin; Hwang, Tae Sik; Park, Doo Hyun

    2009-09-01

    A noncompartmented microbial fuel cell (NCMFC) composed of a Mn(IV)-carbon plate and a Fe(III)-carbon plate was used for electricity generation from organic wastewater without consumption of external energy. The Fe(III)-carbon plate, coated with a porous ceramic membrane and a semipermeable cellulose acetate film, was used as a cathode, which substituted for the catholyte and cathode. The Mn(IV)-carbon plate was used as an anode without a membrane or film coating. A solar cell connected to the NCMFC activated electricity generation and bacterial consumption of organic matter contained in the wastewater. More than 99 degrees of the organic matter was biochemically oxidized during wastewater flow through the four NCMFC units. A predominant bacterium isolated from the anode surface in both the conventional and the solar cell-linked NCMFC was found to be more than 99 degrees similar to a Mn(II)-oxidizing bacterium and Burkeholderia sp., based on 16S rDNA sequence analysis. The isolate reacted electrochemically with the Mn(IV)-modified anode and produced electricity in the NCMFC. After 90 days of incubation, a bacterial species that was enriched on the Mn(IV)-modified anode surface in all of the NCMFC units was found to be very similar to the initially isolated predominant species by comparing 16S rDNA sequences.

  18. Bismuth and niobium co-doped barium cobalt oxide as a promising cathode material for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Shaofei; Le, Shiru; Guan, Lili; Liu, Tao; Sun, Kening

    2015-11-01

    Perovskite oxides BaBi0.05Co0.95-yNbyO3-δ (BBCNy, 0 ≤ y ≤ 0.2) are synthesized and evaluated as potential cathode materials for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). Highly charged Nb5+ successfully stabilizes the cubic perovskite structure to room temperature with Nb substituting content y ≥ 0.1. The phase structure, thermal expansion behavior, electrical conductivity and electrochemical performance of BBCNy with cubic phase are systematically studied. The samples exhibit excellent chemical compatibility with GDC and have sufficiently high electrical conductivities. However, the thermal expansion coefficients of BBCNy samples are nearly twice those of the most commonly used electrolyte materials YSZ and GDC, which is a major drawback for application in IT-SOFCs. The polarization resistances of BBCNy with y = 0.10, 0.15 and 0.20 on GDC electrolyte are 0.086, 0.079 and 0.107 Ω cm2 at 700 °C, respectively. Even though the YSZ electrolyte membrane and GDC barrier layer are approximately 50 μm and 10 μm in thickness, the highest maximum power density (1.23 W cm-2) of the single cell Ni-YSZ|YSZ|GDC|BBCN0.15 is obtained at 750 °C. Good long-term stability of the single cell with BBCN0.15 cathode is also demonstrated. These results demonstrate that BBCNy perovskite oxides with cubic structure are very promising cathode materials for IT-SOFCs.

  19. Fuel cell generator with fuel electrodes that control on-cell fuel reformation

    DOEpatents

    Ruka, Roswell J.; Basel, Richard A.; Zhang, Gong

    2011-10-25

    A fuel cell for a fuel cell generator including a housing including a gas flow path for receiving a fuel from a fuel source and directing the fuel across the fuel cell. The fuel cell includes an elongate member including opposing first and second ends and defining an interior cathode portion and an exterior anode portion. The interior cathode portion includes an electrode in contact with an oxidant flow path. The exterior anode portion includes an electrode in contact with the fuel in the gas flow path. The anode portion includes a catalyst material for effecting fuel reformation along the fuel cell between the opposing ends. A fuel reformation control layer is applied over the catalyst material for reducing a rate of fuel reformation on the fuel cell. The control layer effects a variable reformation rate along the length of the fuel cell.

  20. Compact fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Jacobson, Craig; DeJonghe, Lutgard C.; Lu, Chun

    2010-10-19

    A novel electrochemical cell which may be a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) is disclosed where the cathodes (144, 140) may be exposed to the air and open to the ambient atmosphere without further housing. Current collector (145) extends through a first cathode on one side of a unit and over the unit through the cathode on the other side of the unit and is in electrical contact via lead (146) with housing unit (122 and 124). Electrical insulator (170) prevents electrical contact between two units. Fuel inlet manifold (134) allows fuel to communicate with internal space (138) between the anodes (154 and 156). Electrically insulating members (164 and 166) prevent the current collector from being in electrical contact with the anode.

  1. Insight into the structure and functional application of the Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ cathode for solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wei; Zhang, Huairuo; Sun, Chunwen; Liu, Lilu; Alonso, J A; Fernández-Díaz, M T; Chen, Liquan

    2015-04-01

    A new perovskite cathode, Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ, performs well for oxygen-reduction reactions in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). We gain insight into the crystal structure of Sr1-xCexCoO3-δ (x = 0.05, 0.1) and temperature-dependent structural evolution of Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ by X-ray diffraction, neutron powder diffraction, and scanning transmission electron microscopy experiments. Sr0.9Ce0.1CoO3-δ shows a perfectly cubic structure (a = a0), with a large oxygen deficiency in a single oxygen site; however, Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ exhibits a tetragonal perovskite superstructure with a double c axis, defined in the P4/mmm space group, that contains two crystallographically different cobalt positions, with distinct oxygen environments. The structural evolution of Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ at high temperatures was further studied by in situ temperature-dependent NPD experiments. At 1100 K, the oxygen atoms in Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ show large and highly anisotropic displacement factors, suggesting a significant ionic mobility. The test cell with a La0.8Sr0.2Ga0.83Mg0.17O3-δ-electrolyte-supported (∼300 μm thickness) configuration yields peak power densities of 0.25 and 0.48 W cm(-2) at temperatures of 1023 and 1073 K, respectively, with pure H2 as the fuel and ambient air as the oxidant. The electrochemical impedance spectra evolution with time of the symmetric cathode fuel cell measured at 1073 K shows that the Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ cathode possesses superior ORR catalytic activity and long-term stability. Mixed ionic-electronic conduction properties of Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ account for its good performance as an oxygen-reduction catalyst. PMID:25756843

  2. Insight into the structure and functional application of the Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ cathode for solid oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wei; Zhang, Huairuo; Sun, Chunwen; Liu, Lilu; Alonso, J A; Fernández-Díaz, M T; Chen, Liquan

    2015-04-01

    A new perovskite cathode, Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ, performs well for oxygen-reduction reactions in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). We gain insight into the crystal structure of Sr1-xCexCoO3-δ (x = 0.05, 0.1) and temperature-dependent structural evolution of Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ by X-ray diffraction, neutron powder diffraction, and scanning transmission electron microscopy experiments. Sr0.9Ce0.1CoO3-δ shows a perfectly cubic structure (a = a0), with a large oxygen deficiency in a single oxygen site; however, Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ exhibits a tetragonal perovskite superstructure with a double c axis, defined in the P4/mmm space group, that contains two crystallographically different cobalt positions, with distinct oxygen environments. The structural evolution of Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ at high temperatures was further studied by in situ temperature-dependent NPD experiments. At 1100 K, the oxygen atoms in Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ show large and highly anisotropic displacement factors, suggesting a significant ionic mobility. The test cell with a La0.8Sr0.2Ga0.83Mg0.17O3-δ-electrolyte-supported (∼300 μm thickness) configuration yields peak power densities of 0.25 and 0.48 W cm(-2) at temperatures of 1023 and 1073 K, respectively, with pure H2 as the fuel and ambient air as the oxidant. The electrochemical impedance spectra evolution with time of the symmetric cathode fuel cell measured at 1073 K shows that the Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ cathode possesses superior ORR catalytic activity and long-term stability. Mixed ionic-electronic conduction properties of Sr0.95Ce0.05CoO3-δ account for its good performance as an oxygen-reduction catalyst.

  3. Isolation and bioelectrochemical characterization of novel fungal sources with oxidasic activity applied in situ for the cathodic oxygen reduction in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Morant, Kyriale Vasconcelos; da Silva, Paulo Henrique; de Campos-Takaki, Galba Maria; Hernández, Camilo Enrique La Rotta

    2014-11-01

    Brazilian filamentous fungi Rhizopus sp. (SIS-31), Aspergillus sp. (SIS-18) and Penicillium sp. (SIS-21), sources of oxidases were isolated from Caatinga's soils and applied during the in situ cathodic oxygen reduction in fuel cells. All strains were cultivated in submerged cultures using an optimized saline medium enriched with 10 g L(-1) of glucose, 3.0 g L(-1) of peptone and 0.0005 g L(-1) of CuSO4 as enzyme inducer. Parameters of oxidase activity, glucose consumption and microbial growth were evaluated. In-cell experiments evaluated by chronoamperometry were performed and two different electrode compositions were also compared. Maximum current densities of 125.7, 98.7 and 11.5 μA cm(-2) were observed before 24 h and coulombic efficiencies of 56.5, 46.5 and 23.8% were obtained for SIS-31, SIS-21 and SIS-18, respectively. Conversely, maximum power outputs of 328.73, 288.80 and 197.77 mW m(-3) were observed for SIS-18, SIS-21 and SIS-31, respectively. This work provides the primary experimental evidences that fungi isolated from the Caatinga region in Brazil can serve as efficient biocatalysts during the oxygen reduction in air-cathodes to improve electricity generation in MFCs.

  4. Palladium and ceria infiltrated La 0.8Sr 0.2Co 0.5Fe 0.5O 3- δ cathodes of solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Jing; Liang, Fengli; Chi, Bo; Pu, Jian; Jiang, San Ping; Jian, Li

    La 0.8Sr 0.2Co 0.5Fe 0.5O 3- δ (LSCF) cathodes infiltrated with electrocatalytically active Pd and (Gd,Ce)O 2 (GDC) nanoparticles are investigated as high performance cathodes for the O 2 reduction reaction in intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). Incorporation of nano-sized Pd and GDC particles significantly reduces the electrode area specific resistance (ASR) as compared to the pure LSCF cathode; ASR is 0.1 Ω cm 2 for the reaction on a LSCF cathode infiltrated with 1.2 mg cm -2 Pd and 0.06 Ω cm 2 on a LSCF cathode infiltrated with 1.5 mg cm -2 GDC at 750 °C, which are all significantly smaller than 0.22 Ω cm 2 obtained for the reaction on a conventional LSCF cathode. The activation energy of GDC- and Pd-impregnated LSCF cathodes is 157 and 176 kJ mol -1, respectively. The GDC-infiltrated LSCF cathode has a lower activation energy and higher electrocatalytic activity for the O 2 reduction reaction, showing promising potential for applications in IT-SOFCs.

  5. Properties of graphite-stainless steel composite in bipolar plates in simulated anode and cathode environments of PEM fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Włodarczyk, Renata

    2014-09-01

    The use of a graphite-stainless steel composite as bipolar plates (BP) in polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) has been evaluated. The study covers measurements of mechanical properties, microstructural examination, analysis of surface profile, wettability, porosity and corrosion resistance of the composite. The corrosion properties of the composite were examined in 0.1 mol·dm-3 H2SO4 + 2 ppm F- saturated with H2 or with O2 and in solutions with different pH: in Na2SO4+ 2 ppm F- (pH = 1.00, 3.00, 5.00) at 80 °C. The performed tests indicate that the graphite modified with stainless steel can be a good choice to be used as a bipolar plate in PEM fuel cells.

  6. Effective sulfur and energy recovery from hydrogen sulfide through incorporating an air-cathode fuel cell into chelated-iron process.

    PubMed

    Sun, Min; Song, Wei; Zhai, Lin-Feng; Cui, Yu-Zhi

    2013-12-15

    The chelated-iron process is among the most promising techniques for the hydrogen sulfide (H2S) removal due to its double advantage of waste minimization and resource recovery. However, this technology has encountered the problem of chelate degradation which made it difficult to ensure reliable and economical operation. This work aims to develop a novel fuel-cell-assisted chelated-iron process which employs an air-cathode fuel cell for the catalyst regeneration. By using such a process, sulfur and electricity were effectively recovered from H2S and the problem of chelate degradation was well controlled. Experiment on a synthetic sulfide solution showed the fuel-cell-assisted chelated-iron process could maintain high sulfur recovery efficiencies generally above 90.0%. The EDTA was preferable to NTA as the chelating agent for electricity generation, given the Coulombic efficiencies (CEs) of 17.8 ± 0.5% to 75.1 ± 0.5% for the EDTA-chelated process versus 9.6 ± 0.8% to 51.1 ± 2.7% for the NTA-chelated process in the pH range of 4.0-10.0. The Fe (III)/S(2-) ratio exhibited notable influence on the electricity generation, with the CEs improved by more than 25% as the Fe (III)/S(2-) molar ratio increased from 2.5:1 to 3.5:1. Application of this novel process in treating a H2S-containing biogas stream achieved 99% of H2S removal efficiency, 78% of sulfur recovery efficiency, and 78.6% of energy recovery efficiency, suggesting the fuel-cell-assisted chelated-iron process was effective to remove the H2S from gas streams with favorable sulfur and energy recovery efficiencies.

  7. Effective sulfur and energy recovery from hydrogen sulfide through incorporating an air-cathode fuel cell into chelated-iron process.

    PubMed

    Sun, Min; Song, Wei; Zhai, Lin-Feng; Cui, Yu-Zhi

    2013-12-15

    The chelated-iron process is among the most promising techniques for the hydrogen sulfide (H2S) removal due to its double advantage of waste minimization and resource recovery. However, this technology has encountered the problem of chelate degradation which made it difficult to ensure reliable and economical operation. This work aims to develop a novel fuel-cell-assisted chelated-iron process which employs an air-cathode fuel cell for the catalyst regeneration. By using such a process, sulfur and electricity were effectively recovered from H2S and the problem of chelate degradation was well controlled. Experiment on a synthetic sulfide solution showed the fuel-cell-assisted chelated-iron process could maintain high sulfur recovery efficiencies generally above 90.0%. The EDTA was preferable to NTA as the chelating agent for electricity generation, given the Coulombic efficiencies (CEs) of 17.8 ± 0.5% to 75.1 ± 0.5% for the EDTA-chelated process versus 9.6 ± 0.8% to 51.1 ± 2.7% for the NTA-chelated process in the pH range of 4.0-10.0. The Fe (III)/S(2-) ratio exhibited notable influence on the electricity generation, with the CEs improved by more than 25% as the Fe (III)/S(2-) molar ratio increased from 2.5:1 to 3.5:1. Application of this novel process in treating a H2S-containing biogas stream achieved 99% of H2S removal efficiency, 78% of sulfur recovery efficiency, and 78.6% of energy recovery efficiency, suggesting the fuel-cell-assisted chelated-iron process was effective to remove the H2S from gas streams with favorable sulfur and energy recovery efficiencies. PMID:24220197

  8. Acidic and alkaline pretreatments of activated carbon and their effects on the performance of air-cathodes in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin; Gao, Ningshengjie; Zhou, Qixing; Dong, Heng; Yu, Hongbing; Feng, Yujie

    2013-09-01

    Activated carbon (AC) is a high performing and cost effective catalyst for oxygen reduction reactions (ORRs) of air-cathodes in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Acidic (HNO3) and alkaline (KOH) pretreatments on AC at low temperature (85°C) are conducted to enhance the performance of MFCs. The alkaline pretreatment increased the power density by 16% from 804±70 to 957±31 mW m(-2), possibly due to the decrease of ohmic resistance (from 20.58 to 19.20 Ω) and the increase of ORR activities provided by the adsorbed hydroxide ion and extra micropore area/volume after alkaline pretreatment. However, acidic pretreatment decreased the power output to 537±36 mW m(-2), which can be mainly attributed to the corrosion by adsorbed proton at the interface of AC powder and stainless steel mesh and the decreased pore area.

  9. Co-Pt core-shell nanostructured catalyst prepared by selective chemical vapor pulse deposition of Pt on Co as a cathode in polymer electrolyte fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Seo, Sang-Joon; Chung, Ho-Kyoon; Yoo, Ji-Beom; Chae, Heeyeop; Seo, Seung-Woo; Min Cho, Sung

    2014-01-15

    A new type of PtCo/C catalyst for use as a cathode in polymer electrolyte fuel cells was prepared by selective chemical vapor pulse deposition (CVPD) of Pt on the surface of Co. The activity of the prepared catalyst for oxygen reduction was higher than that of a catalyst prepared by sequential impregnation (IMP) with the two metallic components. This catalytic activity difference occurs because the former catalyst has smaller Pt crystallites that produce stronger Pt-Co interactions and have a larger Pt surface area. Consequently, the CVPD catalyst has a great number of Co particles that are in close contact with the added Pt. The Pt surface was also electronically modified by interactions with Co, which were stronger in the CVPD catalyst than in the IMP catalyst, as indicated by X-ray diffraction, X-ray photoemission spectroscopy, and cyclic voltammetry measurements of the catalysts.

  10. Acidic and alkaline pretreatments of activated carbon and their effects on the performance of air-cathodes in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin; Gao, Ningshengjie; Zhou, Qixing; Dong, Heng; Yu, Hongbing; Feng, Yujie

    2013-09-01

    Activated carbon (AC) is a high performing and cost effective catalyst for oxygen reduction reactions (ORRs) of air-cathodes in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). Acidic (HNO3) and alkaline (KOH) pretreatments on AC at low temperature (85°C) are conducted to enhance the performance of MFCs. The alkaline pretreatment increased the power density by 16% from 804±70 to 957±31 mW m(-2), possibly due to the decrease of ohmic resistance (from 20.58 to 19.20 Ω) and the increase of ORR activities provided by the adsorbed hydroxide ion and extra micropore area/volume after alkaline pretreatment. However, acidic pretreatment decreased the power output to 537±36 mW m(-2), which can be mainly attributed to the corrosion by adsorbed proton at the interface of AC powder and stainless steel mesh and the decreased pore area. PMID:23890977

  11. Fuel cell development for transportation: Catalyst development

    SciTech Connect

    Doddapaneni, N.

    1996-04-01

    Fuel cells are being considered as alternate power sources for transportation and stationary applications. With proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells the fuel crossover to cathodes causes severe thermal management and cell voltage drop due to oxidation of fuel at the platinized cathodes. The main goal of this project was to design, synthesize, and evaluate stable and inexpensive transition metal macrocyclic catalysts for the reduction of oxygen and be electrochemically inert towards anode fuels such as hydrogen and methanol.

  12. Cathode for aluminum producing electrolytic cell

    DOEpatents

    Brown, Craig W.

    2004-04-13

    A method of producing aluminum in an electrolytic cell comprising the steps of providing an anode in a cell, preferably a non-reactive anode, and also providing a cathode in the cell, the cathode comprised of a base material having low electrical conductivity reactive with molten aluminum to provide a highly electrically conductive layer on the base material. Electric current is passed from the anode to the cathode and alumina is reduced and aluminum is deposited at the cathode. The cathode base material is selected from boron carbide, and zirconium oxide.

  13. Synthesis of iron oxide/partly graphitized carbon composites as a high-efficiency and low-cost cathode catalyst for microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ming; Dai, Ying; Zou, Jin-long; Wang, Lei; Pan, Kai; Fu, Hong-gang

    2014-08-27

    Waste cornstalks and pomelo skins are used as carbon resources for preparing nanocomposites of iron oxide and partly graphitized carbon (Fe3O4/PGC-CS and Fe3O4/PGC-PS). The results showed that Fe3O4 with a face-centered cubic structure is uniformly dispersed on the skeleton of Fe3O4/GC, and the highest SBET values of Fe3O4/PGC-CS (476.5 m(2) g(-1)) and Fe3O4/PGC-PS (547.7 m(2) g(-1)) are obtained at 1000 °C. The electrical conductivity and density of catalytic active sites are correspondingly improved by the introduction of Fe species. Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) with a mixed composite (Fe3O4/PGC-CS:Fe3O4/PGC-PS = 1:1) cathode (three-dimensional structures) generate the highest power density of 1502 ± 30 mW m(-2), which is 26.01% higher than that of Pt/C (1192 ± 33 mW m(-2)) and only declines by 7.12% after 18 cycles. The Fe3O4/PGC-CS cathode has the highest Coulombic efficiency (24.3 ± 0.7%). The Fe3O4/PGC composites exhibit high oxygen reduction reactivity, low charge transfer resistances, and long-term stability and can be used as a low-cost and high-efficiency catalyst for MFCs. PMID:25084054

  14. Spray-on polyvinyl alcohol separators and impact on power production in air-cathode microbial fuel cells with different solution conductivities.

    PubMed

    Hoskins, Daniel L; Zhang, Xiaoyuan; Hickner, Michael A; Logan, Bruce E

    2014-11-01

    Separators are used to protect cathodes from biofouling and to avoid electrode short-circuiting, but they can adversely affect microbial fuel cell (MFC) performance. A spray method was used to apply a polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) separator to the cathode. Power densities were unaffected by the PVA separator (339±29mW/m(2)), compared to a control lacking a separator in a low conductivity solution (1mS/cm) similar to wastewater. Power was reduced with separators in solutions typical of laboratory tests (7-13mS/cm), compared to separatorless controls. The PVA separator produced more power in a separator assembly (SEA) configuration (444±8mW/m(2)) in the 1mS/cm solution, but power was reduced if a PVA or wipe separator was used in higher conductivity solutions with either Pt or activated carbon catalysts. Spray and cast PVA separators performed similarly, but the spray method is preferred as it was easier to apply and use.

  15. Determination of effects of turbulence flow in a cathode environment on electricity generation using a tidal mud-based cylindrical-type sediment microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    An, Junyeong; Lee, Soo-Jin; Ng, How Yong; Chang, In Seop

    2010-12-01

    We examined the possibility of harvesting electricity from the surface of a tidal mud flat using a cylindrical-type sediment microbial fuel cell (SMFC), a marine mud battery (MMB), which can be applied in a sea environment where the ebb and flow occur due to tidal difference. In addition, we indirectly investigated the influence of ebb and flow in a lab, using aeration, argon gassing, and by agitating the cathodic solution. The MMBs consisted of cylindrical acrylic compartments containing a nylon membrane, an anode, and a cathode in a single body. The MMBs were stuck vertically into an artificial tidal mud flat such that the anode electrode was in direct contact with the tidal mud surface. As a result, the maximum current and power density generated were 35 mA/m(2) and 9 mW/m(2), respectively, thus verifying that it is possible to harvest electricity from the surface of a tidal mud flat using an MMB without burying the anode electrode in the tidal mud. Furthermore, the results of tests using an artificial turbulence flow showed the flow induced by the tidal ebb and flow could allow the performance of MMBs to be enhanced.

  16. Low platinum loading cathode modified with Cs3H2PMo10V2O40 for polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Renzi, M.; D'Angelo, G.; Marassi, R.; Nobili, F.

    2016-09-01

    The catalytic activity of commercial Pt nanoparticles mixed with mesoporous polyoxometalate Cs3H2PMo10V2O40 towards oxygen reduction reaction is evaluated. The polyoxometalate co-catalyst is prepared by titration of an aqueous solution of phosphovanadomolibdic acid. SEM micrography shows reduction particle size to less than 300 nm, while XRD confirms that the resulting salt maintains the Kegging structure. The composite catalyst is prepared by mixing the POM salt with Pt/C by sonication. RRDE studies show better kinetics for ORR with low Pt loading at the electrode surface. A MEA is assembled by using a Pt/POM-based cathode, in order to assess performance in a working fuel cell. Current vs. potential curves reveals comparable or better performances at 100%, 62% and 17% relative humidity for the POM-modified MEA with respect to a commercial MEA with higher Pt loading at the cathode. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) confirms better kinetics at low relative humidity. Finally, an accelerated stress test (AST) with square wave (SW) between 0.4 V and 0.8 V is performed to evaluate MEA stability for at least 100 h and make predictions about lifetime, showing that after initial losses the catalytic system can retain stable performance and good morphological stability.

  17. Palladium-based electrocatalysts and fuel cells employing such electrocatalysts

    DOEpatents

    Masel; Richard I. , Zhu; Yimin , Larsen; Robert T.

    2010-08-31

    A direct organic fuel cell includes a fluid fuel comprising formic acid, an anode having an electrocatalyst comprising palladium nanoparticles, a fluid oxidant, a cathode electrically connected to the anode, and an electrolyte interposed between the anode and the cathode.

  18. Enhanced electrochemical performance of solution impregnated La 0.8Sr 0.2Co 0.8Ni 0.2O 3- δ cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Xiang; Wang, Fangzhong; Liu, Yihui; Pu, Jian; Chi, Bo; Jian, Li

    Solution impregnated La 0.8Sr 0.2Co 0.8Ni 0.2O 3 + Gd-doped CeO 2 (LSCN + GDC) cathodes for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFC) are prepared and their electrochemical properties are evaluated and compared with the conventional LSCN cathodes. The results indicate that the cathode performance can be enhanced by the presence of the nanosized microstructure produced with the solution impregnation method. It is determined that the amount of LSCN loading in the LSCN + GDC composite cathode needs to be higher than 35 wt% in order to achieve a performance superior to that of the conventional LSCN cathode. The optimum amount of LSCN loading is in the range of 45-55 wt% with an activation energy near 1.32 eV for oxygen reduction. At temperatures between 600 and 750 °C, the polarization resistance of the 55 wt% LSCN loaded LSCN + GDC cathode is in the range of 1.07 and 0.08 Ω cm 2, which is only about one half of that for the conventional cathode.

  19. A comparative study of Pt/C cathodes in Sn 0.9In 0.1P 2O 7 and H 3PO 4 ionomers for high-temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Y. C.; Okada, M.; Hibino, T.

    New Pt/C cathodes with many reaction sites for the oxygen reduction reaction as well as high tolerance to Pt corrosion have been designed for high-temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), wherein a composite mixture of Sn 0.9In 0.1P 2O 7 (SIPO) and sulfonated polystyrene-b-poly(ethylene/butylene)-b-polystyrene (sSEBS) functioned as an ionomer. The microstructure of the Pt-SIPO-sSEBS/C cathode was characterized by homogeneous distribution of the ionomer over the catalyst layer and close contact between the ionomer and the Pt/C powder. As a result, the activation and concentration overpotentials of the Pt-SIPO-sSEBS/C cathode between 100 and 200 °C were lower than those of an H 3PO 4-impregnated Pt/C cathode, which suggests that the present ionomer can avoid poisoning of Pt by phosphate anions and the limitation of gas diffusion through the catalyst layer. Moreover, agglomeration of Pt in the Pt-SIPO-sSEBS/C cathode was not observed during a durability test at 150 °C for 6 days, although it was significant in the Pt-H 3PO 4/C cathode. Therefore, it is concluded that the Pt-SIPO-sSEBS/C electrode is a very promising cathode candidate for high-temperature PEMFCs.

  20. Modeling the cathode in a proton exchange membrane fuel cell using density functional theory How the carbon support can affect durability and activity of a platinum catalyst

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Groves, Michael Nelson

    The current global energy and environmental challenges need to be addressed by developing a new portfolio of clean power producing devices. The proton exchange membrane fuel cell has the potential to be included and can fit into a variety of niches ranging from portable electronics to stationary residential applications. One of the many barriers to commercial viability is the cost of the cathode layer which requires too much platinum metal to achieve a comparable power output as well as would need to be replaced more frequently when compared to conventional sources for most applications. Using density functional theory, an ab initio modeling technique, these durability and activity issues are examined for platinum catalysts on graphene and carbon nanotube supports. The carbon supports were also doped by replacing individual carbon atoms with other second row elements (beryllium, boron, nitrogen, and oxygen) and the effect on the platinum-surface interaction along with the interaction between the platinum and the oxygen reduction reaction intermediates are discussed. Keywords: proton exchange membrane fuel cell, density functional theory, platinum catalyst, oxygen reduction reaction, doped carbon surfaces

  1. Design of an Advanced Membrane Electrode Assembly Employing a Double-Layered Cathode for a PEM Fuel Cell.

    PubMed

    Kim, GyeongHee; Eom, KwangSup; Kim, MinJoong; Yoo, Sung Jong; Jang, Jong Hyun; Kim, Hyoung-Juhn; Cho, EunAe

    2015-12-23

    The membrane electrolyte assembly (MEA) designed in this study utilizes a double-layered cathode: an inner catalyst layer prepared by a conventional decal transfer method and an outer catalyst layer directly coated on a gas diffusion layer. The double-layered structure was used to improve the interfacial contact between the catalyst layer and membrane, to increase catalyst utilization and to modify the removal of product water from the cathode. Based on a series of MEAs with double-layered cathodes with an overall Pt loading fixed at 0.4 mg cm(-2) and different ratios of inner-to-outer Pt loading, the MEA with an inner layer of 0.3 mg Pt cm(-2) and an outer layer of 0.1 mg Pt cm(-2) exhibited the best performance. This performance was better than that of the conventional single-layered electrode by 13.5% at a current density of 1.4 A cm(-2).

  2. Segmented cell testing for cathode parameter investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanasini, Pietro; Schuler, J. Andreas; Wuillemin, Zacharie; Ameur, Myriam L. Ben; Comninellis, Christos; Van herle, Jan

    The increasing quality and durability of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) state-of-the-art materials renders the long-term testing of fuel cells difficult since considerably long equipment times are needed to obtain valuable results. Moreover, reproducibility issues are common due to the high sensitivity of the performance and degradation on the testing conditions. An original segmented cell configuration has been adopted in order to carry out four tests in parallel, thus decreasing the total experimental time and ensuring the same operating conditions for the four segments. The investigation has been performed on both anode-supported cells and symmetrical Lanthanum-Strontium Manganite-Yttria-stabilized Zirconia (LSM-YSZ) electrolyte-supported cells. In separate tests, the influence of variables like cathode thickness, current density and cathode composition on performance and degradation have been explored on anode-supported cells. Furthermore, the effect of chromium poisoning has been studied on electrolyte-supported symmetric cells by contacting one segment with a chromium-iron interconnect material. Long-term polarization of the segments is controlled with a multi-channel galvanostatic device designed in-house. Electrochemical characterization has been performed through electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) at different H 2 partial pressures, temperatures and bias current, effectively demonstrating the direct impact of each studied variable on the cell performance and degradation behavior. Segmented cell testing has been proven to be an effective strategy to achieve better reproducibility for SOFC measurements since it avoids the inevitable fluctuations found in a series of successively run tests. Moreover, simultaneous testing increased n-fold the data output per experiment, implying a considerable economy of time.

  3. Cooling channels design analysis with chaotic laminar trajectory for closed cathode air-cooled PEM fuel cells using non-reacting numerical approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    N, W. Mohamed W. A.

    2015-09-01

    The thermal management of Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEM) fuel cells contributes directly to the overall power output of the system. For a closed cathode PEM fuel cell design, the use of air as a cooling agent is a non-conventional method due to the large heat load involved, but it offers a great advantage for minimizing the system size. Geometrical aspects of the cooling channels have been identified as the basic parameter for improved cooling performance. Numerical investigation using STAR-CCM computational fluid dynamics platform was applied for non-reacting cooling effectiveness study of various channel geometries for fuel cell application. The aspect ratio of channels and the flow trajectory are the parametric variations. A single cooling plate domain was selected with an applied heat flux of 2400 W/m2 while the cooling air are simulated at Reynolds number of 400 that corresponds to normal air flow velocities using standard 6W fans. Three channel designs of similar number of channels (20 channels) are presented here to analyze the effects of having chaotic laminar flow trajectory compared to the usual straight path trajectory. The total heat transfer between the cooling channel walls and coolant were translated into temperature distribution, maximum temperature gradient, average plate temperature and overall cooling effectiveness analyses. The numerical analysis shows that the chaotic flow promotes a 5% to 10% improvement in cooling effectiveness, depending on the single-axis or multi-axis flow paths applied. Plate temperature uniformity is also more realizable using the chaotic flow designs.

  4. Fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1984-12-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE), Office of Fossil Energy, has supported and managed a fuel cell research and development (R and D) program since 1976. Responsibility for implementing DOE's fuel cell program, which includes activities related to both fuel cells and fuel cell systems, has been assigned to the Morgantown Energy Technology Center (METC) in Morgantown, West Virginia. The total United States effort of the private and public sectors in developing fuel cell technology is referred to as the National Fuel Cell Program (NFCP). The goal of the NFCP is to develop fuel cell power plants for base-load and dispersed electric utility systems, industrial cogeneration, and on-site applications. To achieve this goal, the fuel cell developers, electric and gas utilities, research institutes, and Government agencies are working together. Four organized groups are coordinating the diversified activities of the NFCP. The status of the overall program is reviewed in detail.

  5. Performances of YBaCo1.4Cu0.6O5+δ–Ce0.8Sm0.2O1.9 composite cathodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    DOE PAGES

    Wang, Lizhong; Peng, Lu; Hu, Michael Z.; Lü, Shiquan; Meng, Xiangwei; Yu, Bo; Wei, Maobin; Fan, Hougang; Yang, Lili

    2015-08-20

    In this paper, the electrochemical properties of YBaCo1.4Cu0.6O5+δ–xCe0.8Sm0.2O1.9 (YBCC–xSDC, x=20, 30, 40, 50 wt%) have been investigated for the potential application in intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). No chemical reactions between YBCC cathode and SDC electrolyte, and YBCC and La0.9Sr0.1Ga0.8Mg0.2O3-δ (LSGM) occur. The thermal expansion coefficient (TEC) of YBCC cathode decreases with SDC addition. The TEC of YBCC–30SDC cathode is 13.60×10–6 K-1 from 30 to 850 °C in air and it exhibits the best electrochemical performance among the YBCC–xSDC cathodes. The polarization resistance (Rp) of YBCC–30SDC is 0.027 Ω cm2 at 850 °C, 0.044 Ω cm2 at 800 °Cmore » and 0.075 Ω cm2 at 750 °C. The maximum power density value of electrolyte-based cell with YBCC–30SDC cathode is 662, 483 and 319 mW cm-2 at 850, 800 and 750 °C, respectively. Finally, preliminary results indicate that YBCC–30SDC is especially promising as a cathode for IT-SOFCs.« less

  6. Stability of La0.6Sr0.4Co0.2Fe0.8O3/Ce0.9Gd0.1O2 cathodes during sintering and solid oxide fuel cell operation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiebach, Ragnar; Zhang, Wei-Wei; Zhang, Wei; Chen, Ming; Norrman, Kion; Wang, Hsiang-Jen; Bowen, Jacob R.; Barfod, Rasmus; Hendriksen, Peter Vang

    2015-06-01

    Degradation phenomena of La0.58Sr0.4Co0.2Fe0.8O3/Ce0.9Gd0.1O2 (LSCF/CGO) cathodes were investigated via post-mortem analyses of an experimental solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) stack tested at 700 °C for 2000 h using advanced electron microscopy (SEM-EDS, HR-TEM-EDS) and time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (TOF-SIMS). Similar studies were carried out on non-tested reference cells for comparison. The analysis focused on the LSCF/CGO cathode and the CGO barrier layer, as the cathode degradation can be a major contributor to the overall degradation in this type of SOFC. SEM-EDS and TOF-SIMS were used to investigate inter-diffusion across the barrier layer-electrolyte interface and the barrier layer-cathode interface. In addition, TOF-SIMS data were employed to investigate impurity distribution before and after testing. HR-TEM-EDS was used to investigate possible phase segregation in the LSCF and to look for reaction between the phases. The results show that phase separation and inter-diffusion across the cathode-barrier layer interface and the barrier layer-electrolyte interface happened mainly during sintering and cathode firing, and to a very little degree during the test period.

  7. Density functional theory study on oxygen adsorption in LaSrCoO 4: An extended cathode material for solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Jun; Chen, Gang; Wu, Kai; Cheng, Yonghong; Peng, Bo; Guo, Jiaojiao; Jiang, Yizhe

    2012-01-01

    Solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) is one of the most promising technologies for a clean and secure source of energy in future due to its high energy efficiency and outstanding fuel flexibility. The search for new materials operating at low-temperature in order to make SOFCs economically competitive is a great challenge facing us today. In this report, atomistic computer simulation based on density functional theory (DFT) has been used to predict the formation of oxygen vacancy and the strong oxygen adsorption kinetics mechanisms in LaSrCoO4. The optimal adsorption configurations as well as the adsorption energies for oxygen molecule adsorption on various sites of LaSrCoO4 (0 1 0) surface were derived. Furthermore, a strong hybridization between Co and O and shorter Co-O bond length for molecular adsorption were obtained by analysis of density of states. The calculated results imply that LaSrCoO4 could serve as possible cathode material due to its low formation and migration energies of oxygen vacancies.

  8. The enhancement of ammonium removal from ethanolamine wastewater using air-cathode microbial fuel cells coupled to ferric reduction.

    PubMed

    Shin, Ja-Won; Seo, Seok-Ju; Maitlo, Hubdar Ali; Park, Joo-Yang

    2015-08-01

    A microbial fuel cell (MFC) with biological Fe(III) reduction was implemented for simultaneous ethanolamine (ETA) degradation and electrical energy generation. In the feasibility experiment using acetate as a substrate in a single-chamber MFC with goethite and ammonium at a ratio of 3.0(mol/mol), up to 96.1% of the ammonium was removed through the novel process related to Fe(III). In addition, the highest voltage output (0.53V) and maximum power density (0.49Wm(-2)) were obtained. However, the ammonium removal and electrical performance decreased as acetate was replaced with ETA. In the long-term experiment, the electrical performance markedly decreased where the voltage loss increased due to Fe deposition on the membranes.

  9. Electrochemical surface modification of carbon mesh anode to improve the performance of air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jianmei; Chi, Meiling; Wang, Hongyu; He, Huanhuan; Zhou, Minghua

    2013-12-01

    A convenient and promising alternative to surface modification of carbon mesh anode was fulfilled by electrochemical oxidation in the electrolyte of nitric acid or ammonium nitrate at ambient temperature. It was confirmed that such an anode modification method was low cost and effective not only in improving the efficiency of power generation in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) for synthetic wastewater treatment, but also helping to reduce the period for MFCs start-up. The MFCs with anode modification in electrolyte of nitric acid performed the best, achieving a Coulombic efficiency enhancement of 71 %. As characterized, the electrochemical modification resulted in the decrease of the anode potential and internal resistance but the increase of current response and nitrogen-containing and oxygen-containing functional groups on the carbon surface, which might contribute to the enhancement on the performances of MFCs.

  10. Improved Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Stack

    DOEpatents

    Wilson, Mahlon S.; Ramsey, John C.

    2005-03-08

    A stack of direct methanol fuel cells exhibiting a circular footprint. A cathode and anode manifold, tie-bolt penetrations and tie-bolts are located within the circular footprint. Each fuel cell uses two graphite-based plates. One plate includes a cathode active area that is defined by serpentine channels connecting the inlet and outlet cathode manifold. The other plate includes an anode active area defined by serpentine channels connecting the inlet and outlet of the anode manifold, where the serpentine channels of the anode are orthogonal to the serpentine channels of the cathode. Located between the two plates is the fuel cell active region.

  11. Robust NdBa0.5Sr0.5Co1.5Fe0.5O5+δ cathode material and its degradation prevention operating logic for intermediate temperature-solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Tae-Hee; Park, Ka-Young; Kim, Nam-In; Song, Sun-Ju; Hong, Ki-Ha; Ahn, Docheon; Azad, Abul K.; Hwang, Junyeon; Bhattacharjee, Satadeep; Lee, Seung-Cheol; Lim, Hyung-Tae; Park, Jun-Young

    2016-11-01

    We report solutions (durable material and degradation prevention method) to minimize the performance degradation of cell components occurring in the solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) operation. Reliability testing is carried out with the Nisbnd Nd0.1Ce0.9O2-δ (NDC) anode-supported intermediate temperature-SOFCs. For the cathode materials, single perovskite structured Ba0.5Sr0.5Co0.8Fe0.2O3-δ (BSCF) and double perovskite structured NdBa0.5Sr0.5Co1.5Fe0.5O5+δ (NBSCF) are prepared and evaluated under harsh SOFC operating conditions. The double perovskite NBSCF cathode shows excellent stability in harsh SOFC environments of high humidity and low flow rate of air. Furthermore, we propose the concurrent fuel and air starvation mode, in which the cell potential is temporarily reduced due to the formation of both fuel-starvation (in the anode) and air-depletion (in the cathode) concurrently under a constant load. This is carried out in order to minimize the performance decay of the stable NBSCF-cell through the periodic and extra reduction of aH2 O (and aO2) in the anode. The operating-induced degradation of SOFCs, which are ordinarily assumed to be unrecoverable, can be completely circumvented by the proposed periodical operation logic to prevent performance degradation (concurrent fuel-starvation and air-depletion mode).

  12. Boron monoxide-hydrogen peroxide fuel cell

    SciTech Connect

    Struthers, R.C.

    1985-01-08

    A primary fuel cell including an elongate case defining a central ion exchange compartment with opposite ends and containing a liquid ionolyte. The case next defines an anode section at one end of the case and including a gas compartment containing boron monoxide gas fuel, a liquid compartment between the gas compartment and the ion exchange compartment and containing a liquid anolyte. The ionolyte and anolyte are separated by a cationic membrane. The gas and liquid compartments are separated by an anode plate including an electron collector part, a catalyst material carried by said part and a gas permeable hydrophobic membrane between the boron monoxide gas and the catalyst material. The cell further includes a cathode section at the other end of the case defining a cathode fuel compartment containing a fluid cathode fuel and a cathode plate between and separating the cathode fuel and the ionolyte in the ion exchange compartment. The cathode plate includes an electron distributor part and a catalyst material carried by the distributor part. If the cathode fuel is a gas fuel, the cathode plate also includes a gas permeable hydrophobic membrane between the catalyst material carried by the distributor part and the cathode fuel. The cathode and anode plates have terminals connected with a related external electric circuit.

  13. Fuel cell electrode interconnect contact material encapsulation and method

    DOEpatents

    Derose, Anthony J.; Haltiner, Jr., Karl J.; Gudyka, Russell A.; Bonadies, Joseph V.; Silvis, Thomas W.

    2016-05-31

    A fuel cell stack includes a plurality of fuel cell cassettes each including a fuel cell with an anode and a cathode. Each fuel cell cassette also includes an electrode interconnect adjacent to the anode or the cathode for providing electrical communication between an adjacent fuel cell cassette and the anode or the cathode. The interconnect includes a plurality of electrode interconnect protrusions defining a flow passage along the anode or the cathode for communicating oxidant or fuel to the anode or the cathode. An electrically conductive material is disposed between at least one of the electrode interconnect protrusions and the anode or the cathode in order to provide a stable electrical contact between the electrode interconnect and the anode or cathode. An encapsulating arrangement segregates the electrically conductive material from the flow passage thereby, preventing volatilization of the electrically conductive material in use of the fuel cell stack.

  14. Wetting-in studies on alkaline-fuel-cell cathodes using a potentiostatic-galvanostatic experimental design

    SciTech Connect

    Lundblad, A.; Bjoernbom, P. . Dept. of Chemical Engineering and Technology)

    1994-06-01

    The influence of potential and current on electrolyte intrusion during the initiation phase of poly(tetrafluoroethylene)-(PTFE)-bonded carbon cathodes has been studied. A potentiostatic-galvanostatic experimental design was used. This was attained by varying the oxygen concentration using a computerized control circuit. The intrusion depth was determined by an electron microscope element-mapping method, and the amount of intruded electrolyte was determined by weighing. The wetting-in of the electrode was found to depend strongly on potential and less on applied current density. A combination of electrocapillarity and electro-osmosis is proposed as an explanation of the results. The experiments have also revealed interesting phenomena concerning electrolyte and three-dimensional current-density distribution during the initiation phase. From the results, a mechanism for the sudden failure (flooding) of PTFE-bonded carbon cathodes at the end of their service life is suggested.

  15. Lan+1NinO3n+1 (n = 2 and 3) phases and composites for solid oxide fuel cell cathodes: Facile synthesis and electrochemical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, Rakesh K.; Burriel, Mónica; Dessemond, Laurent; Bassat, Jean-Marc; Djurado, Elisabeth

    2016-09-01

    In this work we present a modified citrate-nitrate route using citric acid as a chelating agent as an effective and facile strategy to obtain nanocrystalline La3Ni2O7+δ (L3N2) and La4Ni3O10-δ (L4N3) powders for the preparation of solid oxide fuel cell cathodes. Both samples crystallize in a Fmmm orthorhombic layered Lan+1NinO3n+1 Ruddlesden-Popper structure, with n = 2 and 3, respectively. The oxygen non-stoichiometry, determined by TGA is equal to 0.05 and 0.06 for L3N2 and L4N3, respectively. The thermal expansion coefficient values of L3N2 and L4N3 are 11.0 × 10-6 K-1 and 11.5 × 10-6 K-1, respectively. This study focused on L3N2, L4N3 and on novel composite electrodes with CGO (Ce0.9Gd0.1O2-δ): L3N2-CGO and L4N3-CGO with a view to taking advantage of their complimentary properties, i.e. high ionic conductivity of CGO and high electronic conductivity of Lan+1NinO3n+1 (n = 2 and 3). A significant improvement of the polarization resistance, from 1.0 to 0.03 Ω cm2 and from 1.5 to 0.52 Ω cm2 at 700 °C, is obtained when 50 wt% CGO is added to L3N2 and L4N3, respectively. In addition, the L3N2-CGO composite shows good long-term stability at 900 °C for 2 weeks in air, confirming its suitability as a SOFC cathode.

  16. Improving La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O3-δ infiltrated solid oxide fuel cell cathode performance through precursor solution desiccation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burye, Theodore E.; Nicholas, Jason D.

    2015-02-01

    Here, for the first time, the average size of solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) electrode nano-particles was reduced through the chemical desiccation of infiltrated precursor nitrate solutions. Specifically, after firing at 700 °C, CaCl2-desiccated La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O3-δ (LSCF) - Ce0.9Gd0.1O1.95 (GDC) cathodes contained LSCF infiltrate particles with an average size of 22 nm. This is in contrast to comparable, undesiccated LSCF-GDC cathodes which contained LSCF infiltrate particles with an average size of 48 nm. X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and controlled atmosphere electrochemical impedance spectroscopy revealed that desiccation reduced the average infiltrate particle size without altering the infiltrate phase purity, the cathode concentration polarization resistance, or the cathode electronic resistance. Compared to undesiccated LSCF-GDC cathodes achieving polarization resistances of 0.10 Ωcm2 at 640 °C, comparable CaCl2-dessicated LSCF-GDC cathodes achieved 0.10 Ωcm2 at 575 °C. Mathematical modeling suggested that these performance improvements resulted solely from average infiltrate particle size reductions.

  17. Carbon fuel cells with carbon corrosion suppression

    DOEpatents

    Cooper, John F.

    2012-04-10

    An electrochemical cell apparatus that can operate as either a fuel cell or a battery includes a cathode compartment, an anode compartment operatively connected to the cathode compartment, and a carbon fuel cell section connected to the anode compartment and the cathode compartment. An effusion plate is operatively positioned adjacent the anode compartment or the cathode compartment. The effusion plate allows passage of carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide exhaust channels are operatively positioned in the electrochemical cell to direct the carbon dioxide from the electrochemical cell.

  18. Synthesis and electrochemical performances of LiNiCuZn oxides as anode and cathode catalyst for low temperature solid oxide fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Jing, Y; Qin, H; Liu, Q; Singh, M; Zhu, B

    2012-06-01

    Low temperature solid oxide fuel cell (LTSOFC, 300-600 degrees C) is developed with advantages compared to conventional SOFC (800-1000 degrees C). The electrodes with good catalytic activity, high electronic and ionic conductivity are required to achieve high power output. In this work, a LiNiCuZn oxides as anode and cathode catalyst is prepared by slurry method. The structure and morphology of the prepared LiNiCuZn oxides are characterized by X-ray diffraction and field emission scanning electron microscopy. The LiNiCuZn oxides prepared by slurry method are nano Li0.28Ni0.72O, ZnO and CuO compound. The nano-crystallites are congregated to form ball-shape particles with diameter of 800-1000 nm. The LiNiCuZn oxides electrodes exhibits high ion conductivity and low polarization resistance to hydrogen oxidation reaction and oxygen reduction reaction at low temperature. The LTSOFC using the LiNiCuZn oxides electrodes demonstrates good cell performance of 1000 mW cm(-2) when it operates at 470 degrees C. It is considered that nano-composite would be an effective way to develop catalyst for LTSOFC.

  19. Treatment of carbon fiber brush anodes for improving power generation in air-cathode microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Yujie; Yang, Qiao; Wang, Xin; Logan, Bruce E.

    Carbon brush electrodes have been used to provide high surface areas for bacterial growth and high power densities in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). A high-temperature ammonia gas treatment has been used to enhance power generation, but less energy-intensive methods are needed for treating these electrodes in practice. Three different treatment methods are examined here for enhancing power generation of carbon fiber brushes: acid soaking (CF-A), heating (CF-H), and a combination of both processes (CF-AH). The combined heat and acid treatment improve power production to 1370 mW m -2, which is 34% larger than the untreated control (CF-C, 1020 mW m -2). This power density is 25% higher than using only acid treatment (1100 mW m -2) and 7% higher than that using only heat treatment (1280 mW m -2). XPS analysis of the treated and untreated anode materials indicates that power increases are related to higher N1s/C1s ratios and a lower C-O composition. These findings demonstrate efficient and simple methods for improving power generation using graphite fiber brushes, and provide insight into reasons for improving performance that may help to further increase power through other graphite fiber modifications.

  20. Highly efficient and robust cathode materials for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cells: PrBa0.5Sr0.5Co(2-x)Fe(x)O(5+δ).

    PubMed

    Choi, Sihyuk; Yoo, Seonyoung; Kim, Jiyoun; Park, Seonhye; Jun, Areum; Sengodan, Sivaprakash; Kim, Junyoung; Shin, Jeeyoung; Jeong, Hu Young; Choi, YongMan; Kim, Guntae; Liu, Meilin

    2013-01-01

    Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) are the cleanest, most efficient, and cost-effective option for direct conversion to electricity of a wide variety of fuels. While significant progress has been made in anode materials with enhanced tolerance to coking and contaminant poisoning, cathodic polarization still contributes considerably to energy loss, more so at lower operating temperatures. Here we report a synergistic effect of co-doping in a cation-ordered double-perovskite material, PrBa0.5Sr0.5Co(2-x)Fe(x)O(5+δ), which has created pore channels that dramatically enhance oxygen ion diffusion and surface oxygen exchange while maintaining excellent compatibility and stability under operating conditions. Test cells based on these cathode materials demonstrate peak power densities ~2.2 W cm(-2) at 600°C, representing an important step toward commercially viable SOFC technologies.

  1. The Ca element effect on the enhancement performance of Sr2Fe1.5Mo0.5O6-δ perovskite as cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiao, Jinshuo; Chen, Wenjun; Wang, Wenyi; Wang, Zhenhua; Sun, Wang; Zhang, Jing; Sun, Kening

    2016-11-01

    In this paper, the partial substitution of atomic elements from the A site of a perovskite is investigated in order to develop cathode materials for solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) applications. Herein, Sr2-xCaxFe1.5Mo0.5O6-δ (SCFM), compounds were investigated by characterizing structural properties, chemical compatibility, electrical properties, electrochemical performance and stability. Thermal expansion coefficients were found to decrease when increasing the Ca content. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis suggests that Ca doping significantly affects the Fe2+/Fe3+ and Mo6+/Mo5+ ratios. For a doping level of x = 0.4, the sample showed the lowest interface polarization (Rp), the highest conductivity and a maximum power density of 1.26 W cm-2 at 800 °C. These results suggest that SCFM cathode materials are excellent candidates for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells applications.

  2. Highly efficient and robust cathode materials for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cells: PrBa0.5Sr0.5Co2-xFexO5+δ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Sihyuk; Yoo, Seonyoung; Kim, Jiyoun; Park, Seonhye; Jun, Areum; Sengodan, Sivaprakash; Kim, Junyoung; Shin, Jeeyoung; Jeong, Hu Young; Choi, Yongman; Kim, Guntae; Liu, Meilin

    2013-08-01

    Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) are the cleanest, most efficient, and cost-effective option for direct conversion to electricity of a wide variety of fuels. While significant progress has been made in anode materials with enhanced tolerance to coking and contaminant poisoning, cathodic polarization still contributes considerably to energy loss, more so at lower operating temperatures. Here we report a synergistic effect of co-doping in a cation-ordered double-perovskite material, PrBa0.5Sr0.5Co2-xFexO5+δ, which has created pore channels that dramatically enhance oxygen ion diffusion and surface oxygen exchange while maintaining excellent compatibility and stability under operating conditions. Test cells based on these cathode materials demonstrate peak power densities ~2.2 W cm-2 at 600°C, representing an important step toward commercially viable SOFC technologies.

  3. Metal-gas fuel cell

    SciTech Connect

    Struthers, R.C.

    1984-10-16

    A metal-gas fuel cell comprising an anode chamber filled with a base anolyte solution, a metallic anode plate immersed in the anolyte; an ion exchange chamber filled with a base ionolyte solution adjacent the anode chamber; a cationic membrane between the anode and ion exchange chambers separating the anolyte and ionolyte; a cathode plate adjacent the ion exchange chamber remote from the cationic membrane with one surface in contact with the ionolyte and another surface in contact with a cathode fuel gas. The cathode plate is a laminated structure including a layer of hydrophyllic material in contact with the ionolyte, a layer of gas permeable hydrophobic material in contact with the gas and a gas and liquid permeable current collector of inert material with catalytic surfaces within the layer of hydrophyllic material. The anode and cathode plates are connected with an external electric circuit which effects the flow of electrons from the anode plate to the cathode plate.

  4. Solid oxide fuel cell with single material for electrodes and interconnect

    DOEpatents

    McPheeters, Charles C.; Nelson, Paul A.; Dees, Dennis W.

    1994-01-01

    A solid oxide fuel cell having a plurality of individual cells. A solid oxide fuel cell has an anode and a cathode with electrolyte disposed therebetween, and the anode, cathode and interconnect elements are comprised of substantially one material.

  5. Easy-to-operate and low-temperature synthesis of gram-scale nitrogen-doped graphene and its application as cathode catalyst in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Feng, Leiyu; Chen, Yinguang; Chen, Lang

    2011-12-27

    Nitrogen-doped graphene (NG), with unique electronic properties, is showing great promise for a wide range of practical applications. However, the reported approaches for NG synthesis are usually complex, require high temperatures, produce lower atomic ratios of nitrogen to carbon (N/C), and do not deliver products in a reasonably large quantity. Here we report an easy-to-operate and low-temperature method to synthesize NG in gram-scale quantities with a denotation process. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and X-ray diffraction characterization suggested that the synthesized NG films were uniformly multilayered and had a high crystalline quality. In the graphene sheets the existence of nitrogen substitution with an atomic ratio of N/C 12.5%, which was greater than those reported in the literature, was confirmed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopic analysis. In the neutral phosphate buffer solution, the synthesized NG was demonstrated to act as a metal-free electrode with excellent electrocatalytic activity and long-term operation stability for oxygen reduction via a combination of two-electron and four-electron pathways. When the NG was applied as the cathode catalyst of microbial fuel cells (MFCs), the obtained maximum power density was comparable to that of conventional platinum catalyst. More importantly, MFCs with NG produced power more stably and less expensively than those with Pt catalyst, indicating that the synthesized NG might be used as a good alternative to Pt catalyst in MFCs with a long run.

  6. Enhancement of electricity production in a mediatorless air-cathode microbial fuel cell using Klebsiella sp. IR21.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yun-Yeong; Kim, Tae Gwan; Cho, Kyung-Suk

    2016-06-01

    A novel dissimilatory iron-reducing bacteria, Klebsiella sp. IR21, was isolated from the anode biofilm of an MFC reactor. Klebsiella sp. IR21 reduced 27.8 % of ferric iron to ferrous iron demonstrating that Klebsiella sp. IR21 has electron transfer ability. Additionally, Klebsiella sp. IR21 generated electricity forming a biofilm on the anode surface. When a pure culture of Klebsiella sp. IR21 was supplied into a single chamber, air-cathode MFC fed with a mixture of glucose and acetate (500 mg L(-1) COD), 40-60 mV of voltage (17-26 mA m(-2) of current density) was produced. Klebsiella sp. IR21 was also utilized as a biocatalyst to improve the electrical performance of a conventional MFC reactor. A single chamber, air-cathode MFC was fed with reject wastewater (10,000 mg L(-1) COD) from a H2 fermentation reactor. The average voltage, current density, and power density were 142.9 ± 25.74 mV, 60.5 ± 11.61 mA m(-2), and 8.9 ± 3.65 mW m(-2), respectively, in the MFC without inoculation of Klebsiella sp. IR21. However, these electrical performances of the MFC were significantly increased to 204.7 ± 40.24 mV, 87.5 ± 17.20 mA m(-2), and 18.6 ± 7.23 mW m(-2), respectively, with inoculation of Klebsiella sp. IR21. The results indicate that Klebsiella sp. IR21 can be utilized as a biocatalyst for enhancement of electrical performance in MFC systems.

  7. Oxygen reduction kinetics on graphite cathodes in sediment microbial fuel cells†

    PubMed Central

    Renslow, Ryan; Donovan, Conrad; Shim, Matthew; Babauta, Jerome; Nannapaneni, Srilekha; Schenk, James

    2012-01-01

    Sediment microbial fuel cells (SMFCs) have been used as renewable power sources for sensors in fresh and ocean waters. Organic compounds at the anode drive anodic reactions, while oxygen drives cathodic reactions. An understanding of oxygen reduction kinetics and the factors that determine graphite cathode performance is needed to predict cathodic current and potential losses, and eventually to estimate the power production of SMFCs. Our goals were to (1) experimentally quantify the dependence of oxygen reduction kinetics on temperature, electrode potential, and dissolved oxygen concentration for the graphite cathodes of SMFCs and (2) develop a mechanistic model. To accomplish this, we monitored current on polarized cathodes in river and ocean SMFCs. We found that (1) after oxygen reduction is initiated, the current density is linearly dependent on polarization potential for both SMFC types; (2) current density magnitude increases linearly with temperature in river SMFCs but remains constant with temperature in ocean SMFCs; (3) the standard heterogeneous rate constant controls the current density temperature dependence; (4) river and ocean SMFC graphite cathodes have large potential losses, estimated by the model to be 470 mV and 614 mV, respectively; and (5) the electrochemical potential available at the cathode is the primary factor controlling reduction kinetic rates. The mechanistic model based on thermodynamic and electrochemical principles successfully fit and predicted the data. The data, experimental system, and model can be used in future studies to guide SMFC design and deployment, assess SMFC current production, test cathode material performance, and predict cathode contamination. PMID:22052235

  8. Inorganic salt mixtures as electrolyte media in fuel cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Angell, Charles Austen (Inventor); Belieres, Jean-Philippe (Inventor); Francis-Gervasio, Dominic (Inventor)

    2012-01-01

    Fuel cell designs and techniques for converting chemical energy into electrical energy uses a fuel cell are disclosed. The designs and techniques include an anode to receive fuel, a cathode to receive oxygen, and an electrolyte chamber in the fuel cell, including an electrolyte medium, where the electrolyte medium includes an inorganic salt mixture in the fuel cell. The salt mixture includes pre-determined quantities of at least two salts chosen from a group consisting of ammonium trifluoromethanesulfonate, ammonium trifluoroacetate, and ammonium nitrate, to conduct charge from the anode to the cathode. The fuel cell includes an electrical circuit operatively coupled to the fuel cell to transport electrons from the cathode.

  9. Fuel cells 101

    SciTech Connect

    Hirschenhofer, J.H.

    1999-07-01

    This paper discusses the various types of fuel cells, the importance of cell voltage, fuel processing for natural gas, cell stacking, fuel cell plant description, advantages and disadvantages of the types of fuel cells, and applications. The types covered include: polymer electrolyte fuel cell, alkaline fuel cell, phosphoric acid fuel cell; molten carbonate fuel cell, and solid oxide fuel cell.

  10. A mixed-conducting BaPr0.8In0.2O3-δ cathode for proton-conducting solid oxide fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Zhihong, Wang; Liu, Mingfei; Sun, Wenping; Ding, Dong; Lu, Zhe; Liu, Meilin

    2012-11-02

    A mixed ionic and electronic conductor, BaPr0.8In0.2O3-δ (BPI), was synthesized and examined as a cathode material for proton-conducting solid oxide fuel cells (H-SOFCs). X-ray diffraction analysis revealed that BPI had a perovskite structure and showed satisfactory tolerance to CO2 and H2O and good chemical compatibility with BaZr0.1Ce0.7Y0.1Yb0.1O3-δ (BZCYYb) electrolyte. Test cells with a single-phase BPI cathode exhibited excellent electrochemical performances, demonstrating a peak power density of ~ 688 mW cm- 2 at 750 °C. Furthermore, the cells with a BPI cathode showed very stable power output at a cell voltage of 0.7 V at 600 °C over 100 h, suggesting that BPI is a promising alternative cathode for H-SOFCs.

  11. Multi scale and physics models for intermediate and low temperatures H+-solid oxide fuel cells with H+/e-/O2- mixed conducting properties: Part A, generalized percolation theory for LSCF-SDC-BZCY 3-component cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Daifen; Zhang, Qiang; Lu, Liu; Periasamy, Vijay; Tade, Moses O.; Shao, Zongping

    2016-01-01

    H+ based solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) composite cathodes are generally agreed to be of quite different relationships among the microstructure parameters, electrode properties and detailed working processes from the conventional O2--SOFC composite cathodes. In this paper, the percolation theory is significantly generalized and developed to suit most of the typical H+-SOFC composite cathodes with e-/H+, e-/O2- or e-/H+/O2- mixed conducting characteristics; not just limited to the BCZY, SDC and LSCF materials. It provides an easy way to investigate the effect of microstructure parameters on the H+-SOFC electrode characteristics in quantity. The studied electrode properties include: i) the potential coexisting sites of O2, e-, and O2- transport paths for the oxygen reduction; ii) the potential coexisting sites of O2-, H+ and H2O transport paths for the vapor formation; iii) the effective e-, O2-, and H+ conducting and gas diffusing capabilities of the composite cathodes, and so on. It will be helpful for the H+-SOFC composite cathode manufacture to achieve the expected properties. Furthermore, it is also an important step for the developing of the multiphysics-model in manuscript part B to study the effect of the microstructure parameters on the H+-SOFC working details.

  12. Alkaline fuel cell performance investigation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Martin, R. E.; Manzo, M. A.

    1988-01-01

    An exploratory experimental fuel cell test program was conducted to investigate the performance characteristics of alkaline laboratory research electrodes. The objective of this work was to establish the effect of temperature, pressure, and concentration upon performance and evaluate candidate cathode configurations having the potential for improved performance. The performance characterization tests provided data to empirically establish the effect of temperature, pressure, and concentration upon performance for cell temperatures up to 300 F and reactant pressures up to 200 psia. Evaluation of five gold alloy cathode catalysts revealed that three doped gold alloys had more that two times the surface areas of reference cathodes and therefore offered the best potential for improved performance.

  13. Alkaline fuel cell performance investigation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Martin, R. E.; Manzo, M. A.

    1988-01-01

    An exploratory experimental fuel cell test program was conducted to investigate the performance characteristics of alkaline laboratory research electrodes. The objective of this work was to establish the effect of temperature, pressure, and concentration upon performance and evaluate candidate cathode configurations having the potential for improved performance. The performance characterization tests provided data to empirically establish the effect of temperature, pressure, and concentration upon performance for cell temperatures up to 300 F and reactant pressures up to 200 psia. Evaluation of five gold alloy cathode catalysts revealed that three doped gold alloys had more than two times the surface areas of reference cathodes and therefore offered the best potential for improved performance.

  14. Enrichment of anodic biofilm inoculated with anaerobic or aerobic sludge in single chambered air-cathode microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Gao, Chongyang; Wang, Aijie; Wu, Wei-Min; Yin, Yalin; Zhao, Yang-Guo

    2014-09-01

    Aerobic sludge after anaerobic pretreatment and anaerobic sludge were separately used as inoculum to start up air-cathode single-chamber MFCs. Aerobic sludge-inoculated MFCs arrived at 0.27 V with a maximum power density of 5.79 W m(-3), while anaerobic sludge-inoculated MFCs reached 0.21 V with 3.66 W m(-3). Microbial analysis with DGGE profiling and high-throughput sequencing indicated that aerobic sludge contained more diverse bacterial populations than anaerobic sludge. Nitrospira species dominated in aerobic sludge, while anaerobic sludge was dominated by Desulfurella and Acidithiobacillus species. Microbial community structure and composition in anodic biofilms enriched, respectively from aerobic and anaerobic sludges tended gradually to be similar. Potentially exoelectrogenic Geobacter and Anaeromusa species, biofilm-forming Zoogloea and Acinetobacter species were abundant in both anodic biofilms. This study indicated that aerobic sludge performed better for MFCs startup, and the enrichment of anodic microbial consortium with different inocula but same substrate resulted in uniformity of functional microbial communities.

  15. OPTIMIZATION OF THE CATHODE LONG-TERM STABILITY IN MOLTEN CARBONATE FUEL CELLS: EXPERIMENTAL STUDY AND MATHEMATICAL MODELING

    SciTech Connect

    Dr. Ralph E. White

    2001-03-31

    SS 304 was encapsulated with thin layers of Co-Ni by an electroless deposition process. The corrosion behavior of SS304 and Co-Ni-SS304 was investigated in molten carbonate under cathode gas atmosphere with electrochemical and surface characterization tools. Surface modification of SS304 reduced the dissolution of chromium and nickel into the molten carbonate melt. Composition of the corrosion scale formed in case of Co-Ni-SS304 is different from SS304 and shows the presence of Co and Ni oxides while the latter shows the presence of lithium ferrite. Polarization resistance for oxygen reduction reaction and conductivity of corrosion values for the corrosion scales were obtained using impedance analysis and current-potential plots. The results indicated lower polarization resistance for oxygen reduction reaction in the case of Co-Ni-SS304 when compared to SS304. Also, the conductivity of the corrosion scales was considerably higher in case of Co-Ni-SS304 than the SS304. This study shows that modifying the current collector surface with Co-Ni coatings leads to the formation of oxide scales with improved barrier properties and electronic conductivity.

  16. Degradation of (La0.6Sr0.4)0.95(Co0.2Fe0.8)O3-δ Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Cathodes at the Nanometer Scale and below.

    PubMed

    Ni, Na; Cooper, Samuel J; Williams, Robert; Kemen, Nils; McComb, David W; Skinner, Stephen J

    2016-07-13

    The degradation of intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cell (ITSOFC) cathodes has been identified as a major issue limiting the development of ITSOFCs as high efficiency energy conversion devices. In this work, the effect of Cr poisoning on (La0.6Sr0.4)0.95(Co0.2Fe0.8)O3-δ (LSCF6428), a particularly promising ITSOFC cathode material, was investigated on symmetrical cells using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and multiscale structural/chemical analysis by advanced electron and ion microscopy. The systematic combination of bulk and high-resolution analysis on the same cells allows, for the first time, direct correlation of Cr induced performance degradation with subtle and localized structural/chemical changes of the cathode down to the atomic scale. Up to 2 orders of magnitude reduction in conductivity, oxygen surface exchange rate, and diffusivity were observed in Cr poisoned LSCF6428 samples. These effects are associated with the formation of nanometer size SrCrO4; grain boundary segregation of Cr; enhanced B-site element exsolution (both Fe and Co); and reduction in the Fe valence, the latter two being related to Cr substitution in LSCF. The finding that significant degradation of the cathode happens before obvious microscale change points to new critical SOFC degradation mechanisms effective at the nanometer scale and below. PMID:27336290

  17. Degradation of (La0.6Sr0.4)0.95(Co0.2Fe0.8)O3-δ Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Cathodes at the Nanometer Scale and below.

    PubMed

    Ni, Na; Cooper, Samuel J; Williams, Robert; Kemen, Nils; McComb, David W; Skinner, Stephen J

    2016-07-13

    The degradation of intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cell (ITSOFC) cathodes has been identified as a major issue limiting the development of ITSOFCs as high efficiency energy conversion devices. In this work, the effect of Cr poisoning on (La0.6Sr0.4)0.95(Co0.2Fe0.8)O3-δ (LSCF6428), a particularly promising ITSOFC cathode material, was investigated on symmetrical cells using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and multiscale structural/chemical analysis by advanced electron and ion microscopy. The systematic combination of bulk and high-resolution analysis on the same cells allows, for the first time, direct correlation of Cr induced performance degradation with subtle and localized structural/chemical changes of the cathode down to the atomic scale. Up to 2 orders of magnitude reduction in conductivity, oxygen surface exchange rate, and diffusivity were observed in Cr poisoned LSCF6428 samples. These effects are associated with the formation of nanometer size SrCrO4; grain boundary segregation of Cr; enhanced B-site element exsolution (both Fe and Co); and reduction in the Fe valence, the latter two being related to Cr substitution in LSCF. The finding that significant degradation of the cathode happens before obvious microscale change points to new critical SOFC degradation mechanisms effective at the nanometer scale and below.

  18. Cells having cathodes containing polycarbon disulfide materials

    DOEpatents

    Okamoto, Yoshi; Skotheim, Terje A.; Lee, Hung S.

    1995-08-15

    The present invention relates to an electric current producing cell which contains an anode, a cathode having as a cathode-active material one or more carbon-sulfur compounds of the formula (CS.sub.x).sub.n, in which x takes values from 1.2 to 2.3 and n is greater or equal to 2, and where the redox process does not involve polymerization and de-polymerization by forming and breaking S--S bonds in the polymer backbone. The cell also contains an electrolyte which is chemically inert with respect to the anode and the cathode.

  19. Cells having cathodes containing polycarbon disulfide materials

    DOEpatents

    Okamoto, Y.; Skotheim, T.A.; Lee, H.S.

    1995-08-15

    The present invention relates to an electric current producing cell which contains an anode, a cathode having as a cathode-active material one or more carbon-sulfur compounds of the formula (CS{sub x}){sub n}, in which x takes values from 1.2 to 2.3 and n is greater or equal to 2, and where the redox process does not involve polymerization and de-polymerization by forming and breaking S--S bonds in the polymer backbone. The cell also contains an electrolyte which is chemically inert with respect to the anode and the cathode. 5 figs.

  20. Molten carbonate fuel cell matrices

    DOEpatents

    Vogel, Wolfgang M.; Smith, Stanley W.

    1985-04-16

    A molten carbonate fuel cell including a cathode electrode of electrically conducting or semiconducting lanthanum containing material and an electrolyte containing matrix of an electrically insulating lanthanum perovskite. In addition, in an embodiment where the cathode electrode is LaMnO.sub.3, the matrix may include LaAlO.sub.3 or a lithium containing material such as LiAlO.sub.2 or Li.sub.2 TiO.sub.3.

  1. Separator plate for a fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Petri, R.J.; Meek, J.; Bachta, R.P.; Marianowski, L.G.

    1996-04-02

    A separator plate is described for a fuel cell comprising an anode current collector, a cathode current collector and a main plate, the main plate disposed between the anode current collector and the cathode current collector. The anode current collector forms a flattened peripheral wet seal structure and manifold wet seal structure on the anode side of the separator plate and the cathode current collector forms a flattened peripheral wet seal structure and manifold wet seal structure on the cathode side of the separator plate. In this manner, the number of components required to manufacture and assemble a fuel cell stack is reduced. 9 figs.

  2. Separator plate for a fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Petri, Randy J.; Meek, John; Bachta, Robert P.; Marianowski, Leonard G.

    1996-01-01

    A separator plate for a fuel cell comprising an anode current collector, a cathode current collector and a main plate, the main plate disposed between the anode current collector and the cathode current collector. The anode current collector forms a flattened peripheral wet seal structure and manifold wet seal structure on the anode side of the separator plate and the cathode current collector forms a flattened peripheral wet seal structure and manifold wet seal structure on the cathode side of the separator plate. In this manner, the number of components required to manufacture and assemble a fuel cell stack is reduced.

  3. Hydrothermal synthesis of highly crystalline RuS{sub 2} nanoparticles as cathodic catalysts in the methanol fuel cell and hydrochloric acid electrolysis

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Yanjuan; Li, Nan; Yanagisawa, Kazumichi; Li, Xiaotian; Yan, Xiao

    2015-05-15

    Highlights: • Highly crystalline RuS{sub 2} nanoparticles have been first synthesized by a “one-step” hydrothermal method. • The product presents a pure cubic phase of stoichiometric ratio RuS{sub 2} with average particle size of 14.8 nm. • RuS{sub 2} nanoparticles were used as cathodic catalysts in methanol fuel cell and hydrochloric acid electrolysis. • The catalyst outperforms commercial Pt/C in methanol tolerance and stability towards Cl{sup −}. - Abstract: Highly crystalline ruthenium sulfide (RuS{sub 2}) nanoparticles have been first synthesized by a “one-step” hydrothermal method at 400 °C, using ruthenium chloride and thiourea as reactants. The products were characterized by powder X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy/energy disperse spectroscopy (SEM/EDS), thermo gravimetric-differential thermal analyze (TG-DTA), transmission electron microscopy equipped with selected area electron diffraction (TEM/SAED). Fourier transform infrared spectra (IR), and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). XRD result illustrates that the highly crystalline product presents a pure cubic phase of stoichiometric ratio RuS{sub 2} and the average particle size is 14.8 nm. SEM and TEM images display the products have irregular shape of 6–25 nm. XPS analyst indicates that the sulfur exists in the form of S{sub 2}{sup 2−}. Cyclic voltammetry (CV), rotating disk electrode (RDE), chronoamperometry (CA) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) measurements are conducted to evaluate the electrocatalytic activity and stability of the highly crystalline RuS{sub 2} nanoparticles in oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) for methanol fuel cell and hydrochloric acid electrolysis. The results illustrate that RuS{sub 2} is active towards oxygen reduction reaction. Although the activity of RuS{sub 2} is lower than that of Pt/C, the RuS{sub 2} catalyst outperforms commercial Pt/C in methanol tolerance and stability towards Cl{sup −}.

  4. Ca and In co-doped BaFeO3-δ as a cobalt-free cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Jian; Lam, Kwun Yu; Saccoccio, Mattia; Gao, Yang; Chen, Dengjie; Ciucci, Francesco

    2016-08-01

    We report Ba0·95Ca0·05Fe0·95In0·05O3-δ (BCFI), a novel cobalt-free perovskite, as a promising cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). We synthesize this new material, and systematically characterize its lattice structure, thermal stability, chemical composition, electrical conductivity, and oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity. The cubic phase of BaFeO3-δ is stabilized by light isovalent and lower-valence substitution, i.e., 5% Ca2+ in the Ba2+ site and 5% In3+ in the Fe3+/Fe4+ site, in contrast with the typical approach of substituting elements of higher valence. Without resorting to co-doping strategy, the phase of BaFe0·95In0·05O3-δ (BFI) is rhombohedral, while Ba0·95Ca0·05FeO3-δ (BCF) is a mixture of the cubic phase together with BaFe2O4 impurities. The structure of BCFI is cubic from room temperature up to 900 °C with a moderate thermal expansion coefficient of 23.2 × 10-6 K-1. Thanks to the large oxygen vacancy concentration and fast oxygen mobility, BCFI exhibits a favorable ORR activity, i.e., we observe a polarization resistance as small as 0.038 Ω cm2 at 700 °C. The significantly enhanced performance, compared with BFI and BCF, is attributed to the presence of the cubic phase and the large oxygen vacancies brought by the isovalent substitution in the A-site and lower-valence doping in the B-site.

  5. Ca and In co-doped BaFeO3-δ as a cobalt-free cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Jian; Lam, Kwun Yu; Saccoccio, Mattia; Gao, Yang; Chen, Dengjie; Ciucci, Francesco

    2016-08-01

    We report Ba0·95Ca0·05Fe0·95In0·05O3-δ (BCFI), a novel cobalt-free perovskite, as a promising cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). We synthesize this new material, and systematically characterize its lattice structure, thermal stability, chemical composition, electrical conductivity, and oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity. The cubic phase of BaFeO3-δ is stabilized by light isovalent and lower-valence substitution, i.e., 5% Ca2+ in the Ba2+ site and 5% In3+ in the Fe3+/Fe4+ site, in contrast with the typical approach of substituting elements of higher valence. Without resorting to co-doping strategy, the phase of BaFe0·95In0·05O3-δ (BFI) is rhombohedral, while Ba0·95Ca0·05FeO3-δ (BCF) is a mixture of the cubic phase together with BaFe2O4 impurities. The structure of BCFI is cubic from room temperature up to 900 °C with a moderate thermal expansion coefficient of 23.2 × 10-6 K-1. Thanks to the large oxygen vacancy concentration and fast oxygen mobility, BCFI exhibits a favorable ORR activity, i.e., we observe a polarization resistance as small as 0.038 Ω cm2 at 700 °C. The significantly enhanced performance, compared with BFI and BCF, is attributed to the presence of the cubic phase and the large oxygen vacancies brought by the isovalent substitution in the A-site and lower-valence doping in the B-site.

  6. Nitrogen-doped graphene/CoNi alloy encased within bamboo-like carbon nanotube hybrids as cathode catalysts in microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hou, Yang; Yuan, Heyang; Wen, Zhenhai; Cui, Shumao; Guo, Xiaoru; He, Zhen; Chen, Junhong

    2016-03-01

    Cost-effective catalysts are of key importance to the successful deployment of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) for electricity generation from organic wastes. Herein, a novel catalyst prepared by one-step synthesis strategy is reported. The catalyst features N-doped bamboo-like carbon nanotube (BCNT) in which CoNi-alloy is encapsulated at the end and/or the middle section of the tube with many graphene layers inside inner cavities of BCNT (N-G@CoNi/BCNT). The prepared N-G@CoNi/BCNT exhibits a high oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity with an early onset potential of 0.06 V vs. Ag/AgCl and a comparable exchange current density to that of commercial Pt/C. The excellent catalytic activity is further evidenced by a high electron transfer number of 3.63. When being applied in MFCs, the N-G@CoNi/BCNT yields an average current density of 6.7 A m-2, slightly lower than that of Pt/C but with a less mass transfer potential loss. The cost of the N-G@CoNi/BCNT for constructing a 1-m2 cathode electrode is 200 times lower than that of Pt/C. With such a competitive price and excellent electrocatalytic-activity resulting from its unique morphology, CoNi-alloy/nitrogen dopants, considerable specific surface area, and carbon-coated alloy/graphene hybridization, the present catalyst is a promising candidate for ORR catalysts in MFCs for energy recovery from wastes.

  7. Easy-to-operate and low-temperature synthesis of gram-scale nitrogen-doped graphene and its application as cathode catalyst in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Feng, Leiyu; Chen, Yinguang; Chen, Lang

    2011-12-27

    Nitrogen-doped graphene (NG), with unique electronic properties, is showing great promise for a wide range of practical applications. However, the reported approaches for NG synthesis are usually complex, require high temperatures, produce lower atomic ratios of nitrogen to carbon (N/C), and do not deliver products in a reasonably large quantity. Here we report an easy-to-operate and low-temperature method to synthesize NG in gram-scale quantities with a denotation process. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and X-ray diffraction characterization suggested that the synthesized NG films were uniformly multilayered and had a high crystalline quality. In the graphene sheets the existence of nitrogen substitution with an atomic ratio of N/C 12.5%, which was greater than those reported in the literature, was confirmed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopic analysis. In the neutral phosphate buffer solution, the synthesized NG was demonstrated to act as a metal-free electrode with excellent electrocatalytic activity and long-term operation stability for oxygen reduction via a combination of two-electron and four-electron pathways. When the NG was applied as the cathode catalyst of microbial fuel cells (MFCs), the obtained maximum power density was comparable to that of conventional platinum catalyst. More importantly, MFCs with NG produced power more stably and less expensively than those with Pt catalyst, indicating that the synthesized NG might be used as a good alternative to Pt catalyst in MFCs with a long run. PMID:22029637

  8. Ambient pressure fuel cell system

    DOEpatents

    Wilson, Mahlon S.

    2000-01-01

    An ambient pressure fuel cell system is provided with a fuel cell stack formed from a plurality of fuel cells having membrane/electrode assemblies (MEAs) that are hydrated with liquid water and bipolar plates with anode and cathode sides for distributing hydrogen fuel gas and water to a first side of each one of the MEAs and air with reactant oxygen gas to a second side of each one of the MEAs. A pump supplies liquid water to the fuel cells. A recirculating system may be used to return unused hydrogen fuel gas to the stack. A near-ambient pressure blower blows air through the fuel cell stack in excess of reaction stoichiometric amounts to react with the hydrogen fuel gas.

  9. Nanocrystalline cerium oxide materials for solid fuel cell systems

    SciTech Connect

    Brinkman, Kyle S

    2015-05-05

    Disclosed are solid fuel cells, including solid oxide fuel cells and PEM fuel cells that include nanocrystalline cerium oxide materials as a component of the fuel cells. A solid oxide fuel cell can include nanocrystalline cerium oxide as a cathode component and microcrystalline cerium oxide as an electrolyte component, which can prevent mechanical failure and interdiffusion common in other fuel cells. A solid oxide fuel cell can also include nanocrystalline cerium oxide in the anode. A PEM fuel cell can include cerium oxide as a catalyst support in the cathode and optionally also in the anode.

  10. A high-performance, cobalt-free cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells with excellent CO2 tolerance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bu, Yun-fei; Zhong, Qin; Chen, Dong-Chang; Chen, Yu; Lai, Samson Yuxiu; Wei, Tao; Sun, Hai-bin; Ding, Dong; Liu, Meilin

    2016-07-01

    Compared with some cobalt-rich cathodes which have been proven to yield high performance in SOFCs, interest in cobalt-free cathodes has increased due to their reduced thermal expansion coefficients (TECs), high structural stability, and CO2 tolerance. In this report, a new robust Co-free complex perovskite oxide PrLa0.4Ba0.6Fe0.8Zn0.2O5+δ (PLBFZ) has been synthesized and evaluated. The TEC is 14.4 × 10-6 K-1. With the introduction of Sm0.2Ce0.8O2 (SDC), the composite cathode PLBFZ-SDC with a mass ratio of 7:3 (PLBFZ-SDC 73) exhibited the best electrocatalytic activity for oxygen reduction under OCV conditions, with polarization values of 0.044, 0.079, 0.124, 0.251, 0.572, and 1.297 Ω cm-2 at 800, 750, 700, 650, 600, and 550 °C, respectively. The power densities of the cell were 1309, 1079, 788 and 586 mW cm-2 at 750, 700, 650, and 600 °C, respectively. Moreover, it appears to have good stability in air containing 1% CO2 (volume ratio) for 150 h based on Raman and polarization resistance (Rp) analysis. These results suggest that PLBFZ and its SDC composite are promising cathodes for IT-SOFCs.

  11. Annular feed air breathing fuel cell stack

    DOEpatents

    Wilson, Mahlon S.

    1996-01-01

    A stack of polymer electrolyte fuel cells is formed from a plurality of unit cells where each unit cell includes fuel cell components defining a periphery and distributed along a common axis, where the fuel cell components include a polymer electrolyte membrane, an anode and a cathode contacting opposite sides of the membrane, and fuel and oxygen flow fields contacting the anode and the cathode, respectively, wherein the components define an annular region therethrough along the axis. A fuel distribution manifold within the annular region is connected to deliver fuel to the fuel flow field in each of the unit cells. In a particular embodiment, a single bolt through the annular region clamps the unit cells together. In another embodiment, separator plates between individual unit cells have an extended radial dimension to function as cooling fins for maintaining the operating temperature of the fuel cell stack.

  12. Enhanced surface exchange activity and electrode performance of (La2-2xSr2x)(Ni1-xMnx)O4+δ cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Wenyuan; Guan, Bo; Yan, Jianhua; Zhang, Nan; Zhang, Xinxin; Liu, Xingbo

    2016-06-01

    Surface exchange kinetics of Ruddlesden-Popper (R-P) phase lanthanum nickelates upon Mn doping as an intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs) cathode is investigated for the first time in this communication. To promote the exchange rate in oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) on nickelates, Mn is partially substituted for Ni. The oxygen exchange resistance is accurately measured by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) with dense thin layer cathode. It is found that Mn substantially promotes the surface kinetics; a surface exchange coefficient (k) of 1.57 × 10-6 cm/s is obtained at 700 °C for La1.8Sr0.2Ni0.9Mn0.1O4+δ (Sr20Mn10), ∼80% higher than that of the undoped La2NiO4+δ (LNO). To our best knowledge, such coefficient is the highest values among the currently available R-P phase IT-SOFC cathodes. The corresponding polarization resistances (Rp) are evaluated on porous electrodes. Rp for LNO is 0.74 Ωcm2 at 750 °C, but decreases significantly to 0.42 Ωcm2 for Sr20Mn10 which is remarkably improved compared to the reported values in the literature for La2MO4+δ materials (M = transition metal). Those promising results demonstrate that Mn-doped LNO is a new excellent cathode material for IT-SOFC.

  13. Performance of LaBaCo 2O 5+ δ-Ag with B 2O 3-Bi 2O 3-PbO frit composite cathodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Ruifeng; Gao, Lei; Ge, Lin; Zheng, Yifeng; Zhou, Ming; Chen, Han; Guo, Lucun

    The composite cathodes LaBaCo 2O 5+ δ- x wt.% Ag (LBCO- xAg, x = 20, 30, 40, 50) were prepared by mechanical mixing method for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). The experiment results indicated that the addition of a small amount of B 2O 3-Bi 2O 3-PbO (BBP) frit to LBCO- xAg can effectively improve the adhesion and strength of cathode membrane without damaging its porous structure. The BBP frit was proved effective for lowering the sintering temperature of LBCO- xAg to 900 °C. According to the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy and cathodic polarization analysis, the LBCO-30Ag exhibited the best performance and the optimal BBP frit content was 2.5 wt.%. For LBCO-30Ag with 2.5 wt.% BBP frit, the area-specific resistance based on Sm 0.2Ce 0.8O 1.9 (SDC) electrolyte decreased by about 57.6% at 700 °C, 60.5% at 750 °C and 75.9% at 800 °C compared to LBCO, and its cathodic overpotential was 10.7 mV at a current density of 0.2 A cm -2 at 700 °C, while the corresponding value for LBCO was 51.0 mV. The addition of Ag and BBP frit to LBCO had no significant effect on the thermal expansion.

  14. Praseodymium-deficiency Pr0.94BaCo2O6-δ double perovskite: A promising high performance cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Fuchang; Xia, Tian; Wang, Jingping; Shi, Zhan; Zhao, Hui

    2015-10-01

    Praseodymium-deficiency Pr0.94BaCo2O6-δ (P0.94BCO) double perovskite has been evaluated as a cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells. X-ray diffraction pattern shows the orthorhombic structure with double lattice parameters from the primitive perovskite cell in Pmmm space group. P0.94BCO has a good chemical compatibility with Ce0.9Gd0.1O1.95 (CGO) electrolyte even at 1000 °C for 24 h. It is observed that the Pr-deficiency can introduce the extra oxygen vacancies in P0.94BCO, further enhancing its electrocatalytic activity for oxygen reduction reaction. P0.94BCO demonstrates the promising cathode performance as evidenced by low polarization are-specific resistance (ASR), e. g. 0.11 Ω cm2 and low cathodic overpotential e. g. -56 mV at a current density of -78 mA cm-2 at 600 °C in air. These features are comparable to those of the benchmark cathode Ba0.5Sr0.5Co0.8Fe0.2O3-δ. The fuel cell CGO-Ni|CGO|P0.94BCO presents the attractive peak power density of 1.05 W cm-2 at 600 °C. Furthermore, the oxygen reduction kinetics of P0.94BCO material is also investigated, and the rate-limiting steps for oxygen reduction reaction are determined.

  15. Interconnection of bundled solid oxide fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Brown, Michael; Bessette, II, Norman F; Litka, Anthony F; Schmidt, Douglas S

    2014-01-14

    A system and method for electrically interconnecting a plurality of fuel cells to provide dense packing of the fuel cells. Each one of the plurality of fuel cells has a plurality of discrete electrical connection points along an outer surface. Electrical connections are made directly between the discrete electrical connection points of adjacent fuel cells so that the fuel cells can be packed more densely. Fuel cells have at least one outer electrode and at least one discrete interconnection to an inner electrode, wherein the outer electrode is one of a cathode and and anode and wherein the inner electrode is the other of the cathode and the anode. In tubular solid oxide fuel cells the discrete electrical connection points are spaced along the length of the fuel cell.

  16. Fuel-cell engine stream conditioning system

    DOEpatents

    DuBose, Ronald Arthur

    2002-01-01

    A stream conditioning system for a fuel cell gas management system or fuel cell engine. The stream conditioning system manages species potential in at least one fuel cell reactant stream. A species transfer device is located in the path of at least one reactant stream of a fuel cell's inlet or outlet, which transfer device conditions that stream to improve the efficiency of the fuel cell. The species transfer device incorporates an exchange media and a sorbent. The fuel cell gas management system can include a cathode loop with the stream conditioning system transferring latent and sensible heat from an exhaust stream to the cathode inlet stream of the fuel cell; an anode humidity retention system for maintaining the total enthalpy of the anode stream exiting the fuel cell related to the total enthalpy of the anode inlet stream; and a cooling water management system having segregated deionized water and cooling water loops interconnected by means of a brazed plate heat exchanger.

  17. Nanostructured Gd 0.8Sr 0.2Fe 0.8M 0.2O 3 (M=Cr, Ga) materials for solid oxide fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruiz de Larramendi, I.; Pinedo, R.; Ortiz-Vitoriano, N.; Ruiz de Larramendi, J. I.; Arriortua, M. I.; Rojo, T.

    Polycrystalline samples of Gd0.8Sr0.2Fe0.8M0.2O3 (M=Cr, Ga) are prepared by combustion route and pore wetting technique in order to compare the influence of the morphology in the performance of two cathodes for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells. When polycarbonate membranes are used as templates nanowire arrays with a diameter of 50-70 nm are obtained. Comparing the results obtained by Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) measurements, it is clearly observed that the cathodic resistance considerably decreases when optimized synthesis parameters are used, obtaining a better performance for the Gd0.8Sr0.2Fe0.8Ga0.2O3 nanowires with an area specific resistance (ASR) value at 850 ∘C of 0.195 Ω cm2.

  18. Fuel Cells

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hawkins, M. D.

    1973-01-01

    Discusses the theories, construction, operation, types, and advantages of fuel cells developed by the American space programs. Indicates that the cell is an ideal small-scale power source characterized by its compactness, high efficiency, reliability, and freedom from polluting fumes. (CC)

  19. The characteristic of strontium-site deficient perovskites SrxFe1.5Mo0.5O6-δ (x = 1.9-2.0) as intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Guoquan; Feng, Jie; Sun, Wang; Dai, Ningning; Hou, Mingyue; Hao, Xiaoming; Qiao, Jinshuo; Sun, Kening

    2014-12-01

    As the cathodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs), A-site deficient SrxFe1.5Mo0.5O6-δ (x = 1.9-2.0) (SxFM) materials have been successfully synthesized using the sol-gel combustion method. In the perovskite structure of these oxides, the unit cell varies from pseudocubic to cubic with increasing deficiency. Thermal expansion coefficient of SxFM has also been measured and compared with that of Scandium-stabilized zirconium (ScSZ) electrolyte. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) results indicate that the Sr-deficiency has changed the proportion of Fe2+/Fe3+ and Mo6+/Mo5+ ratios, which directly influences the conductivity of SxFM materials. S1.950FM possesses the largest electrical conductivity and the lowest polarization resistance (Rp) among all the samples. The maximum power densities of a single cell with the S1.950FM cathode reaches 1083 mW cm-2, and the area specific resistance value is 0.17 Ω cm2 at 800 °C. These results indicate that the A-site deficiency could promote the electrochemical performance of SFM materials as cathodes for IT-SOFCs.

  20. The characteristic of strontium-site deficient perovskites SrxFe1.5Mo0.5O6-δ (x = 1.9-2.0) as intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Guoquan; Feng, Jie; Sun, Wang; Dai, Ningning; Hou, Mingyue; Hao, Xiaoming; Qiao, Jinshuo; Sun, Kening

    2014-12-01

    As the cathodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs), A-site deficient SrxFe1.5Mo0.5O6-δ (x = 1.9-2.0) (SxFM) materials have been successfully synthesized using the sol-gel combustion method. In the perovskite structure of these oxides, the unit cell varies from pseudocubic to cubic with increasing deficiency. Thermal expansion coefficient of SxFM has also been measured and compared with that of Scandium-stabilized zirconium (ScSZ) electrolyte. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) results indicate that the Sr-deficiency has changed the proportion of Fe2+/Fe3+ and Mo6+/Mo5+ ratios, which directly influences the conductivity of SxFM materials. S1.950FM possesses the largest electrical conductivity and the lowest polarization resistance (Rp) among all the samples. The maximum power densities of a single cell with the S1.950FM cathode reaches 1083 mW cm-2, and the area specific resistance value is 0.17 Ω cm2 at 800 °C. These results indicate that the A-site deficiency could promote the electrochemical performance of SFM materials as cathodes for IT-SOFCs.

  1. Fuel cell system

    DOEpatents

    Early, Jack; Kaufman, Arthur; Stawsky, Alfred

    1982-01-01

    A fuel cell system is comprised of a fuel cell module including sub-stacks of series-connected fuel cells, the sub-stacks being held together in a stacked arrangement with cold plates of a cooling means located between the sub-stacks to function as electrical terminals. The anode and cathode terminals of the sub-stacks are connected in parallel by means of the coolant manifolds which electrically connect selected cold plates. The system may comprise a plurality of the fuel cell modules connected in series. The sub-stacks are designed to provide a voltage output equivalent to the desired voltage demand of a low voltage, high current DC load such as an electrolytic cell to be driven by the fuel cell system. This arrangement in conjunction with switching means can be used to drive a DC electrical load with a total voltage output selected to match that of the load being driven. This arrangement eliminates the need for expensive voltage regulation equipment.

  2. Fabrication and characterization of oriented Nd2NiO4 bulk and cathode for low-temperature operating solid oxide fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murata, Atsufumi; Uchikoshi, Tetsuo; Matsuda, Motohide

    2015-10-01

    Textured Nd2NiO4 (NNO) bulks were fabricated by slip casting in a 5 T magnetic field generated by a superconducting magnet. The easy-magnetization axis of NNO was determined by X-ray diffraction (XRD) measurements performed on the surfaces parallel and perpendicular to the applied magnetic field direction of the sintered bulk NNO ceramics. The anisotropic electric conductivity and thermal expansion coefficient of the textured NNO were characterized by the conventional DC four-terminal method and dilatometry, respectively. A higher electric conductivity and lower thermal expansion in the direction perpendicular to the c-axis were confirmed. Based on the obtained experimental data, fabrication of the a-b plane perpendicular-oriented NNO cathode layer on a Gd-doped ceria (GDC) electrolyte was finally attempted in a 0.9 T magnetic field generated by neodymium magnets. The effect of the rotation of the magnetic field in the horizontal plane on the orientation condition of the NNO layer was also investigated. The rotation of the magnetic field could produce the random orientation of the c-axis while retaining the a-b plane orientation against the electrolyte. Based on the performance tests of single cells equipped with different oriented NNO cathodes, the ideal situation of the NNO cathode layer leading to good performance is proposed.

  3. Fuel cell-fuel cell hybrid system

    DOEpatents

    Geisbrecht, Rodney A.; Williams, Mark C.

    2003-09-23

    A device for converting chemical energy to electricity is provided, the device comprising a high temperature fuel cell with the ability for partially oxidizing and completely reforming fuel, and a low temperature fuel cell juxtaposed to said high temperature fuel cell so as to utilize remaining reformed fuel from the high temperature fuel cell. Also provided is a method for producing electricity comprising directing fuel to a first fuel cell, completely oxidizing a first portion of the fuel and partially oxidizing a second portion of the fuel, directing the second fuel portion to a second fuel cell, allowing the first fuel cell to utilize the first portion of the fuel to produce electricity; and allowing the second fuel cell to utilize the second portion of the fuel to produce electricity.

  4. La(0.4)Ba(0.6)Fe(0.8)Zn(0.2)O(3-delta) as cathode in solid oxide fuel cells for simultaneous NO reduction and electricity generation.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Renjie; Bu, Yunfei; Xu, Dandan; Zhong, Qin

    2014-01-01

    A perovskite-type oxide La(0.4)Ba(0.6)Fe(0.8)Zn(0.2)O(3-delta) (LBFZ) was investigated as the cathode material for simultaneous NO reduction and electricity generation in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). The microstructure of LBFZ was demonstrated by X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. The results showed that a single cubic perovskite LBFZ was formed after calcined at 1100 degrees C. Meanwhile, the solid-state reaction between LBFZ and Ce(0.8)Sm(0.2)O(1.9) (SDC) at 900 degrees C was negligible. To measure the electrochemical properties, SOFC units were constructed with Sm(0.9)Sr(0.1)Cr(0.5)Fe(0.5)O3 as the anode, SDC as the electrolyte and LBFZ as the cathode. The maximum power density increased with the increasing NO concentration and temperature. The cell resistance is mainly due to the cathodic polarization resistance.

  5. Fuel cell membrane humidification

    DOEpatents

    Wilson, Mahlon S.

    1999-01-01

    A polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell assembly has an anode side and a cathode side separated by the membrane and generating electrical current by electrochemical reactions between a fuel gas and an oxidant. The anode side comprises a hydrophobic gas diffusion backing contacting one side of the membrane and having hydrophilic areas therein for providing liquid water directly to the one side of the membrane through the hydrophilic areas of the gas diffusion backing. In a preferred embodiment, the hydrophilic areas of the gas diffusion backing are formed by sewing a hydrophilic thread through the backing. Liquid water is distributed over the gas diffusion backing in distribution channels that are separate from the fuel distribution channels.

  6. Study of the acetonitrile poisoning of platinum cathodes on proton exchange membrane fuel cell spatial performance using a segmented cell system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reshetenko, Tatyana V.; St-Pierre, Jean

    2015-10-01

    Due to the wide applications of acetonitrile as a solvent in the chemical industry, acetonitrile can be present in the air and should be considered a possible pollutant. In this work, the spatial proton exchange membrane fuel cell performance exposed to air with 20 ppm CH3CN was studied using a segmented cell system. The injection of CH3CN led to performance losses of 380 mV at 0.2 A cm-2 and 290 mV at 1.0 A cm-2 accompanied by a significant change in the current density distribution. The observed local currents behavior is likely attributed to acetonitrile chemisorption and the subsequent two consecutive reduction/oxidation reactions. The hydrolysis of CH3CN and its intermediate imine species resulted in NH4+ formation, which increased the high-frequency resistance of the cell and affected oxygen reduction and performance. Other products of hydrolysis can be oxidized to CO2 under the operating conditions. The reintroduction of pure air completely recovered cell performance within 4 h at 1.0 A cm-2, while at 0.2 A cm-2 the cell recovery was only partial. A detailed analysis of the current density distribution, its correlation with spatial electrochemical impedance spectroscopy data, possible CH3CN oxidation/reduction mechanisms and mitigation strategies are presented and discussed.

  7. Effect of the symmetric cell preparation temperature on the activity of Ba0.5Sr0.5Fe0.8Cu0.2O3-δ as cathode for intermediate temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vázquez, Santiago; Basbus, Juan; Soldati, Analía L.; Napolitano, Federico; Serquis, Adriana; Suescun, Leopoldo

    2015-01-01

    In this work we studied the electrochemical performance of Ba0.5Sr0.5Fe0.8Cu0.2O3-δ (BSFCu) as cathode for Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (IT-SOFC) with Ce0.9Gd0.1O1.95 (CGO) electrolyte and the effect of the symmetric cell preparation temperature on the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity. Symmetrical cells with the configuration BSFCu/CGO/BSFCu were prepared at 900 °C, 950 °C and 1000 °C to perform the electrochemical characterization in the 500-700 °C temperature range. The resultant area specific resistance (ASR) of the cells with different preparation temperatures followed the tendency: ASR900°C < ASR950°C < ASR1000°C. The symmetric cell constructed at 900 °C showed ASR values of 0.18, 0.078 and 0.035 Ω cm2 at 600, 650 and 700 °C respectively, which demonstrated superior electrochemical activities than previous reports. Additional, X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning and transmission electron microscopies (SEM and TEM) techniques were used to characterize the microstructure of the original and fired BSFCu materials and correlate it with the cell preparation temperature.

  8. Rapidly refuelable fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Joy, Richard W.

    1985-01-01

    A rapidly refuelable dual cell of an electrochemical type wherein a single anode cooperates with two cathodes and wherein the anode has a fixed position and the cathodes are urged toward opposite faces of the anodes at constant and uniform force. The associated cathodes are automatically retractable to permit the consumed anode remains to be removed from the housing and a new anode inserted between the two cathodes.

  9. Rapidly refuelable fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Joy, R.W.

    1982-09-20

    A rapidly refuelable dual cell of an electrochemical type is described wherein a single anode cooperates with two cathodes and wherein the anode has a fixed position and the cathodes are urged toward opposite faces of the anodes at constant and uniform force. The associated cathodes are automatically retractable to permit the consumed anode remains to be removed from the housing and a new anode inserted between the two cathodes.

  10. Recent developments at the cathode processor for spent fuel treatment.

    SciTech Connect

    Westphal, B. R.; Vaden, D.; Hua, T. Q.; Willit, J. L.; Laug, D. V.

    2002-07-29

    As part of the spent fuel treatment program at Argonne National Laboratory, a vacuum distillation process is being employed for the recovery of uranium following an electrorefining process. Distillation of a molten salt electrolyte, primarily consisting of a eutectic mixture of lithium and potassium chlorides with minor amounts of fission product chlorides, from uranium is achieved by a batch operation called cathode processing. Described in this paper are recent developments, both equipment and process-related, at the cathode processor during the treatment of blanket-type spent fuel. For the equipment developments, the installation of a new induction heating coil has produced significant improvements in equipment performance. The process developments include the elimination of a process step and the study of plutonium in the uranium product.

  11. A-site calcium-doped Pr1-xCaxBaCo2O5+δ double perovskites as cathodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, Dawei; Jin, Fangjun; He, Tianmin

    2016-05-01

    The LnBaCo2O5+δ (Ln = rare earth) double perovskite cathodes possess superior electrochemical performance in intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). However, high thermal expansion coefficients (TECs) and material costs are major challenges to their widespread applications. In this paper, a novel A-site Ca doping strategy that can suppress the spin-state transition of Co3+ is proposed to reduce the TECs and material costs of Pr1-xCaxBaCo2O5+δ (x = 0.1-0.4; PCBCO). Substitution of Ca for Pr effectively reduces the TEC from 22.2 × 10-6 K-1 at x = 0.1 to 19.1 × 10-6 K-1 at x = 0.3 between 100 and 800 °C. PCBCO exhibits good chemical compatibility with the Sm0.2Ce0.8O1.9 (SDC) electrolyte. The area-specific resistances of PCBCO cathodes with x = 0.1, 0.2, and 0.3 are 0.081, 0.082, and 0.089 Ω cm2, respectively, at 700 °C on the SDC electrolyte. The maximum power densities of a single cell on a 0.3 mm-thick SDC electrolyte reach 646.5, 636.8, and 620.6 mW cm-2 at 800 °C for cathodes with x = 0.1, 0.2, and 0.3, respectively. The PCBCO double perovskites exhibit excellent chemical compatibility and electrochemical performance while reducing the TECs and material costs; thus, these double perovskites are promising cathode materials for applications in IT-SOFCs.

  12. Operando and in situ X-ray spectroscopies of degradation in La0.6Sr0.4Co0.2Fe0.8O(3-δ) thin film cathodes in fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Lai, Samson Y; Ding, Dong; Liu, Mingfei; Liu, Meilin; Alamgir, Faisal M

    2014-11-01

    Information from ex situ characterization can fall short in describing complex materials systems simultaneously exposed to multiple external stimuli. Operando X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) was used to probe the local atomistic and electronic structure of specific elements in a La0.6Sr0.4Co0.2Fe0.8O(3-δ) (LSCF) thin film cathode exposed to air contaminated with H2O and CO2 under operating conditions. While impedance spectroscopy showed that the polarization resistance of the LSCF cathode increased upon exposure to both contaminants at 750 °C, XAS near-edge and extended fine structure showed that the degree of oxidation for Fe and Co decreases with increasing temperature. Synchrotron-based X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy tracked the formation and removal of a carbonate species, a Co phase, and different oxygen moieties as functions of temperature and gas. The combined information provides insight into the fundamental mechanism by which H2O and CO2 cause degradation in the cathode of solid oxide fuel cells. PMID:25205041

  13. Low temperature aluminum reduction cell using hollow cathode

    DOEpatents

    Brown, Craig W.; Frizzle, Patrick B.

    2002-08-20

    A method of producing aluminum in an electrolytic cell containing alumina dissolved in an electrolyte. A plurality of non-consumable anodes are disposed substantially vertically in the electrolyte along with a plurality of monolithic hollow cathodes. Each cathode has a top and bottom and the cathodes are disposed vertically in the electrolyte and the anodes and the cathodes are arranged in alternating relationship. Each of the cathodes is comprised of a first side facing a first opposing anode and a second side facing a second opposing anode. The first and second sides are joined by ends to form a reservoir in the hollow cathode for collecting aluminum therein deposited at the cathode.

  14. Cathode for an electrochemical cell

    DOEpatents

    Bates, John B.; Dudney, Nancy J.; Gruzalski, Greg R.; Luck, Christopher F.

    2001-01-01

    Described is a thin-film battery, especially a thin-film microbattery, and a method for making same having application as a backup or primary integrated power source for electronic devices. The battery includes a novel electrolyte which is electrochemically stable and does not react with the lithium anode and a novel vanadium oxide cathode. Configured as a microbattery, the battery can be fabricated directly onto a semiconductor chip, onto the semiconductor die or onto any portion of the chip carrier. The battery can be fabricated to any specified size or shape to meet the requirements of a particular application. The battery is fabricated of solid state materials and is capable of operation between -15.degree. C. and 150.degree. C.

  15. Hydrogen peroxide produced by glucose oxidase affects the performance of laccase cathodes in glucose/oxygen fuel cells: FAD-dependent glucose dehydrogenase as a replacement.

    PubMed

    Milton, Ross D; Giroud, Fabien; Thumser, Alfred E; Minteer, Shelley D; Slade, Robert C T

    2013-11-28

    Hydrogen peroxide production by glucose oxidase (GOx) and its negative effect on laccase performance have been studied. Simultaneously, FAD-dependent glucose dehydrogenase (FAD-GDH), an O2-insensitive enzyme, has been evaluated as a substitute. Experiments focused on determining the effect of the side reaction of GOx between its natural electron acceptor O2 (consumed) and hydrogen peroxide (produced) in the electrolyte. Firstly, oxygen consumption was investigated by both GOx and FAD-GDH in the presence of substrate. Relatively high electrocatalytic currents were obtained with both enzymes. O2 consumption was observed with immobilized GOx only, whilst O2 concentration remained stable for the FAD-GDH. Dissolved oxygen depletion effects on laccase electrode performances were investigated with both an oxidizing and a reducing electrode immersed in a single compartment. In the presence of glucose, dramatic decreases in cathodic currents were recorded when laccase electrodes were combined with a GOx-based electrode only. Furthermore, it appeared that the major loss of performance of the cathode was due to the increase of H2O2 concentration in the bulk solution induced laccase inhibition. 24 h stability experiments suggest that the use of O2-insensitive FAD-GDH as to obviate in situ peroxide production by GOx is effective. Open-circuit potentials of 0.66 ± 0.03 V and power densities of 122.2 ± 5.8 μW cm(-2) were observed for FAD-GDH/laccase biofuel cells.

  16. Investigation of GdBaCo2-xFexO6-δ (x = 0, 0.2) - Ce0.8Sm0.2O2 composite cathodes for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsvetkova, N. S.; Zuev, A. Yu.; Tsvetkov, D. S.

    2013-12-01

    The double perovskites GdBaCo2-xFexO6-δ (x = 0, 0.2) and composites (100 - y) GdBaCo2-xFexO6-δ (x = 0, 0.2) - y Ce0.8Sm0.2O2 (y = 10-50 wt.%) were investigated as cathode materials for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). Chemical compatibility of GdBaCo2-xFexO6-δ (x = 0, 0.2) with solid electrolyte Ce0.8Sm0.2O2, thermal expansion, DC conductivity and electrochemical performance of (100 - y) GdBaCo2-xFexO6-δ (x = 0, 0.2) - y Ce0.8Sm0.2O2 (y = 10-50 wt.%) were studied. Partial substitution of Fe for Co was shown to lead to decrease of double perovskite GdBaCo2-xFexO6-δ reactivity with the solid electrolyte Ce0.8Sm0.2O2. Polarization resistance of cathodes studied was found to depend significantly on firing temperature. Variation of solid electrolyte content in (100 - y) GdBaCo2-xFexO6-δ (x = 0, 0.2) - y Ce0.8Sm0.2O2 (y = 10-50 wt.%) composites was shown to allow to optimize their electrochemical performance. Cathode materials of 80 wt.% GdBaCo2O6-δ - 20 wt.% Ce0.8Sm0.2O2 and 65 wt.% GdBaCo1.8Fe0.2O6-δ - 35 wt.% Ce0.8Sm0.2O2 were found to have the lowest polarization resistances and reasonable values of thermal expansion coefficient (TEC) and, therefore, can be considered as promising cathode materials for IT-SOFCs.

  17. Visualization by neutron diffraction of 2D oxygen diffusion in the Sr(0.7)Ho(0.3)CoO(3-δ) cathode for solid-oxide fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Cascos, V; Martínez-Coronado, R; Alonso, J A; Fernández-Díaz, M T

    2014-06-25

    Sr0.7Ho0.3CoO3-δ oxide has been recently described as an excellent cathode material (1274 mW cm(-2) at 850 °C with pure H2 as fuel1) for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) with LSGM as electrolyte. In this work, we describe a detailed study of its crystal structure conducted to find out the correlation between the excellent performance as a cathode and the structural features. The tetragonal crystal structure (e.g., I4/mmm) basically contains layers of octahedrally coordinated Co2O6 units alternated with layers of Co1O4 tetrahedra sharing corners. An "in situ" neutron power diffraction (NPD) experiment, between 25 and 800 °C, reveals the presence of a high oxygen deficiency affecting O4 oxygen atoms, with large displacement factors that suggest a large lability and mobility. Difference Fourier maps allow the visualization at high temperatures of the 2D diffusion pathways within the tetrahedral layers, where O3 and O4 oxygens participate. The measured thermal expansion coefficient is 16.61 × 10(-6) K(-1) between 300 and 850 °C, exhibiting an excellent chemical compatibility with the electrolyte. PMID:24873238

  18. Synthesis and characterization of La0.6Sr0.4Fe0.8Cu0.2O3-δ oxide as cathode for Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vázquez, Santiago; Davyt, Sebastián; Basbus, Juan F.; Soldati, Analía L.; Amaya, Alejandro; Serquis, Adriana; Faccio, Ricardo; Suescun, Leopoldo

    2015-08-01

    Nanocrystalline La0.6Sr0.4Fe0.8Cu0.2O3-δ (LSFCu) material was synthetized by combustion method using EDTA as fuel/chelating agent and NH4NO3 as combustion promoter. Structural characterization using thermodiffraction data allowed to determine a reversible phase transition at 425 °C from a low temperature R-3c phase to a high temperature Pm-3m phase and to calculate the thermal expansion coefficient (TEC) of both phases. Important characteristics for cathode application as electronic conductivity and chemical compatibility with Ce0.9Gd0.1O2-δ (CGO) electrolyte were evaluated. LSFCu presented a p-type conductor behavior with maximum conductivity of 135 S cm-1 at 275 °C and showed a good stability with CGO electrolyte at high temperatures. This work confirmed that as prepared LSFCu has excellent microstructural characteristics and an electrical conductivity between 100 and 60 S cm-1 in the 500-700 °C range which is sufficiently high to work as intermediate temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (IT-SOFCs) cathode. However a change in the thermal expansion coefficient consistent with a small oxygen loss process may affect the electrode-electrolyte interface during fabrication and operation of a SOFC.

  19. Annular feed air breathing fuel cell stack

    DOEpatents

    Wilson, Mahlon S.; Neutzler, Jay K.

    1997-01-01

    A stack of polymer electrolyte fuel cells is formed from a plurality of unit cells where each unit cell includes fuel cell components defining a periphery and distributed along a common axis, where the fuel cell components include a polymer electrolyte membrane, an anode and a cathode contacting opposite sides of the membrane, and fuel and oxygen flow fields contacting the anode and the cathode, respectively, wherein the components define an annular region therethrough along the axis. A fuel distribution manifold within the annular region is connected to deliver fuel to the fuel flow field in each of the unit cells. The fuel distribution manifold is formed from a hydrophilic-like material to redistribute water produced by fuel and oxygen reacting at the cathode. In a particular embodiment, a single bolt through the annular region clamps the unit cells together. In another embodiment, separator plates between individual unit cells have an extended radial dimension to function as cooling fins for maintaining the operating temperature of the fuel cell stack.

  20. Catalytic membranes for fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Liu, Di-Jia; Yang, Junbing; Wang, Xiaoping

    2011-04-19

    A fuel cell of the present invention comprises a cathode and an anode, one or both of the anode and the cathode including a catalyst comprising a bundle of longitudinally aligned graphitic carbon nanotubes including a catalytically active transition metal incorporated longitudinally and atomically distributed throughout the graphitic carbon walls of said nanotubes. The nanotubes also include nitrogen atoms and/or ions chemically bonded to the graphitic carbon and to the transition metal. Preferably, the transition metal comprises at least one metal selected from the group consisting of Fe, Co, Ni, Mn, and Cr.

  1. PEM fuel cell monitoring system

    DOEpatents

    Meltser, Mark Alexander; Grot, Stephen Andreas

    1998-01-01

    Method and apparatus for monitoring the performance of H.sub.2 --O.sub.2 PEM fuel cells. Outputs from a cell/stack voltage monitor and a cathode exhaust gas H.sub.2 sensor are corrected for stack operating conditions, and then compared to predetermined levels of acceptability. If certain unacceptable conditions coexist, an operator is alerted and/or corrective measures are automatically undertaken.

  2. PEM fuel cell monitoring system

    DOEpatents

    Meltser, M.A.; Grot, S.A.

    1998-06-09

    Method and apparatus are disclosed for monitoring the performance of H{sub 2}--O{sub 2} PEM fuel cells. Outputs from a cell/stack voltage monitor and a cathode exhaust gas H{sub 2} sensor are corrected for stack operating conditions, and then compared to predetermined levels of acceptability. If certain unacceptable conditions coexist, an operator is alerted and/or corrective measures are automatically undertaken. 2 figs.

  3. PrBa0.5Sr0.5Co2O5+δ layered perovskite cathode for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Ding, Hanping; Xue, Xingjian

    2010-02-06

    Layered perovskite oxides have ordered A-cations localizing oxygen vacancies, and may potentially improve oxygen ion diffusivity and surface exchange coefficient. The A-site-ordered layered perovskite PrBa0.5Sr0.5Co2O5+δ (PBSC) was evaluated as new cathode material for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). The material was characterized using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy in a symmetrical cell system (PBSC/Ce0.9Sm0.1O1.9 (SDC)/PBSC), exhibiting excellent performance in the intermediate temperature range of 500–700 °C. An area-specific-resistance (ASR) of 0.23 Ω cm2 was achieved at 650 °C for cathode polarization. The low activation energy (Ea) 124 kJ mol-1 is comparable to that of La0.8Sr0.2CoO3-δ. A laboratory-scaled SDC-based tri-layer cell of Ni-SDC/SDC/PBSC was tested in intermediate temperature conditions of 550 to 700 °C. A maximum power density of 1045 mW cm-2 was achieved at 700 °C. The interfacial polarization resistance is as low as 0.285, 0.145, 0.09 and 0.05 Ω cm2 at 550, 600, 650 and 700 °C, respectively. Layered perovskite PBSC shows promising performance as cathode material for IT-SOFCs.

  4. Air breathing direct methanol fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Ren, Xiaoming; Gottesfeld, Shimshon

    2002-01-01

    An air breathing direct methanol fuel cell is provided with a membrane electrode assembly, a conductive anode assembly that is permeable to air and directly open to atmospheric air, and a conductive cathode assembly that is permeable to methanol and directly contacting a liquid methanol source. Water loss from the cell is minimized by making the conductive cathode assembly hydrophobic and the conductive anode assembly hydrophilic.

  5. Formic acid fuel cells and catalysts

    DOEpatents

    Masel, Richard I.; Larsen, Robert; Ha, Su Yun

    2010-06-22

    An exemplary fuel cell of the invention includes a formic acid fuel solution in communication with an anode (12, 134), an oxidizer in communication with a cathode (16, 135) electrically linked to the anode, and an anode catalyst that includes Pd. An exemplary formic acid fuel cell membrane electrode assembly (130) includes a proton-conducting membrane (131) having opposing first (132) and second surfaces (133), a cathode catalyst on the second membrane surface, and an anode catalyst including Pd on the first surface.

  6. Carbon Dioxide Addition to Microbial Fuel Cell Cathodes Maintains Sustainable Catholyte pH and Improves Anolyte pH, Alkalinity, and Conductivity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bioelectrochemical system (BES) pH imbalances develop due to anodic proton-generating oxidation reactions and cathodic hydroxide-ion-generating reduction reactions. Until now, workers added unsustainable buffers to reduce the pH difference between the anode and cathode because the pH imbalance cont...

  7. Intermediate Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Development

    SciTech Connect

    S. Elangovan; Scott Barnett; Sossina Haile

    2008-06-30

    Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) are high efficiency energy conversion devices. Present materials set, using yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) electrolyte, limit the cell operating temperatures to 800 C or higher. It has become increasingly evident however that lowering the operating temperature would provide a more expeditious route to commercialization. The advantages of intermediate temperature (600 to 800 C) operation are related to both economic and materials issues. Lower operating temperature allows the use of low cost materials for the balance of plant and limits degradation arising from materials interactions. When the SOFC operating temperature is in the range of 600 to 700 C, it is also possible to partially reform hydrocarbon fuels within the stack providing additional system cost savings by reducing the air preheat heat-exchanger and blower size. The promise of Sr and Mg doped lanthanum gallate (LSGM) electrolyte materials, based on their high ionic conductivity and oxygen transference number at the intermediate temperature is well recognized. The focus of the present project was two-fold: (a) Identify a cell fabrication technique to achieve the benefits of lanthanum gallate material, and (b) Investigate alternative cathode materials that demonstrate low cathode polarization losses at the intermediate temperature. A porous matrix supported, thin film cell configuration was fabricated. The electrode material precursor was infiltrated into the porous matrix and the counter electrode was screen printed. Both anode and cathode infiltration produced high performance cells. Comparison of the two approaches showed that an infiltrated cathode cells may have advantages in high fuel utilization operations. Two new cathode materials were evaluated. Northwestern University investigated LSGM-ceria composite cathode while Caltech evaluated Ba-Sr-Co-Fe (BSCF) based pervoskite cathode. Both cathode materials showed lower polarization losses at temperatures as low as 600

  8. Combined current and temperature mapping in an air-cooled, open-cathode polymer electrolyte fuel cell under steady-state and dynamic conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, Q.; Ronaszegi, K.; Robinson, J. B.; Noorkami, M.; Curnick, O.; Ashton, S.; Danelyan, A.; Reisch, T.; Adcock, P.; Kraume, R.; Shearing, P. R.; Brett, D. J. L.

    2015-11-01

    In situ diagnostic techniques provide a means of understanding the internal workings of fuel cells so that improved designs and operating regimes can be identified. Here, for the first time, a combined current density and temperature distributed measurement system is used to generate an electro-thermal performance map of an air-cooled, air-breathing polymer electrolyte fuel cell stack operating in an air/hydrogen cross-flow configuration. Analysis is performed in low- and high-current regimes and a complex relationship between localised current density, temperature and reactant supply is identified that describes the way in which the system enters limiting performance conditions. Spatiotemporal analysis was carried out to characterise transient operations in dead-ended anode/purge mode which revealed extensive current density and temperature gradients.

  9. Cathode composition for electrochemical cell

    DOEpatents

    Steunenberg, Robert K.; Martin, Allan E.; Tomczuk, Zygmunt

    1976-01-01

    A high-temperature, secondary electrochemical cell includes a negative electrode containing an alkali metal such as lithium, an electrolyte of molten salt containing ions of that alkali metal and a positive electrode containing a mixture of metallic sulfides. The positive electrode composition is contained within a porous structure that permits permeation of molten electrolyte and includes a mixture of about 5% to 30% by weight Cu.sub.2 S in FeS.

  10. Fuel cell system with combustor-heated reformer

    DOEpatents

    Pettit, William Henry

    2000-01-01

    A fuel cell system including a fuel reformer heated by a catalytic combustor fired by anode effluent and/or fuel from a liquid fuel supply providing fuel for the fuel cell. The combustor includes a vaporizer section heated by the combustor exhaust gases for vaporizing the fuel before feeding it into the combustor. Cathode effluent is used as the principle oxidant for the combustor.

  11. Molten carbonate fuel cell reduction of nickel deposits

    DOEpatents

    Smith, James L.; Zwick, Stanley A.

    1987-01-01

    A molten carbonate fuel cell with anode and cathode electrodes and an eleolyte formed with two tile sections, one of the tile sections being adjacent the anode and limiting leakage of fuel gas into the electrolyte with the second tile section being adjacent the cathode and having pores sized to permit the presence of oxygen gas in the electrolyte thereby limiting the formation of metal deposits caused by the reduction of metal compositions migrating into the electrolyte from the cathode.

  12. Fuel cell with ionization membrane

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hartley, Frank T. (Inventor)

    2007-01-01

    A fuel cell is disclosed comprising an ionization membrane having at least one area through which gas is passed, and which ionizes the gas passing therethrough, and a cathode for receiving the ions generated by the ionization membrane. The ionization membrane may include one or more openings in the membrane with electrodes that are located closer than a mean free path of molecules within the gas to be ionized. Methods of manufacture are also provided.

  13. Precursor solution additives improve desiccated La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O3-x infiltrated solid oxide fuel cell cathode performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burye, Theodore E.; Nicholas, Jason D.

    2016-01-01

    Here, the addition of the surfactant Triton X-100 or the chelating agent citric acid to Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O3-x (LSCF) precursor nitrate solutions is shown via scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) to reduce average infiltrate nano-particle size and improve infiltrate phase purity. In addition, the desiccation of LSCF precursor solutions containing the aforementioned organic solution additives further reduces the average LSCF infiltrate nano-particle size and improves the low-temperature infiltrate phase purity. In particular, CaCl2-desiccation reduces the average size of Triton X-100 derived (TXD) LSCF particles fired at 700 °C from 48 to 22 nm, and reduces the average size of citric acid derived LSCF particles fired at 700 °C from 50 to 41 nm. Modeling and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) tests indicate that particle size reductions alone are responsible for desiccation-induced cathode performance improvements such as CaCl2-desiccated TXD La0.6Sr0.4Co0.8Fe0.2O3-x - Ce0.9Gd0.1O1.95 (LSCF-GDC) cathodes reaching a polarization resistance of 0.17 Ωcm2 at 540 °C, compared to 600 °C for undesiccated TXD LSCF-GDC cathodes. This excellent low-temperature performance, combined with a low open-circuit 540 °C degradation rate, suggests that the desiccation of organic-additive-containing infiltrate precursor solutions may be useful for the development of durable, high-power, low-temperature SOFCs.

  14. Chemically stable perovskites as cathode materials for solid oxide fuel cells: La-doped Ba0.5Sr0.5Co0.8Fe0.2O(3-δ).

    PubMed

    Kim, Junyoung; Choi, Sihyuk; Jun, Areum; Jeong, Hu Young; Shin, Jeeyoung; Kim, Guntae

    2014-06-01

    Ba0.5Sr0.5Co0.8Fe0.2O(3-δ) (BSCF) has won tremendous attention as a cathode material for intermediate-temperature solid-oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFC) on the basis of its fast oxygen-ion transport properties. Nevertheless, wide application of BSCF is impeded by its phase instabilities at intermediate temperature. Here we report on a chemically stable SOFC cathode material, La0.5Ba0.25Sr0.25Co0.8Fe0.2O(3-δ) (LBSCF), prepared by strategic approaches using the Goldschmidt tolerance factor. The tolerance factors of LBSCF and BSCF indicate that the structure of the former has a smaller deformation of cubic symmetry than that of the latter. The electrical property and electrochemical performance of LBSCF are improved compared with those of BSCF. LBSCF also shows excellent chemical stability under air, a CO2-containg atmosphere, and low oxygen partial pressure while BSCF decomposed under the same conditions. Together with this excellent stability, LBSCF shows a power density of 0.81 W cm(-2) after 100 h, whereas 25 % degradation for BSCF is observed after 100 h.

  15. Influence of different morphology of three-dimensional Cu(x)O with mixed facets modified air-cathodes on microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ziqi; Li, Kexun; Zhang, Xi; Ge, Baochao; Pu, Liangtao

    2015-11-01

    Three kinds of three-dimensional (3D) CuxO catalysts were prepared to modify activated carbon air-cathode using a facile electrochemical method with addition of surfactants. The maximum power density of MFC using SC-Cu air cathode (added sodium citrate into the electrolyte solution in electrodeposition process) was 1550±47 mW m(-2), almost 77% higher than AC cathode. Specifically, the charge transfer resistance significantly decreased by 89% from 9.3980 Ω to 1.0640 Ω compared to the control. Lumphy and mutually embedded filmy sheet structure were observed in SEM, which provided sufficient active sites for oxygen adsorption and diffusion. In XRD and TEM result, CuxO with mixed facets showed special structure which had a better performance. Crystallization condition of electrodeposited materials played a significant role in their nature electrochemical properties, morphology controlled by surfactant of CuxO exhibited high properties on the air-cathode MFC.

  16. Influence of different morphology of three-dimensional Cu(x)O with mixed facets modified air-cathodes on microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ziqi; Li, Kexun; Zhang, Xi; Ge, Baochao; Pu, Liangtao

    2015-11-01

    Three kinds of three-dimensional (3D) CuxO catalysts were prepared to modify activated carbon air-cathode using a facile electrochemical method with addition of surfactants. The maximum power density of MFC using SC-Cu air cathode (added sodium citrate into the electrolyte solution in electrodeposition process) was 1550±47 mW m(-2), almost 77% higher than AC cathode. Specifically, the charge transfer resistance significantly decreased by 89% from 9.3980 Ω to 1.0640 Ω compared to the control. Lumphy and mutually embedded filmy sheet structure were observed in SEM, which provided sufficient active sites for oxygen adsorption and diffusion. In XRD and TEM result, CuxO with mixed facets showed special structure which had a better performance. Crystallization condition of electrodeposited materials played a significant role in their nature electrochemical properties, morphology controlled by surfactant of CuxO exhibited high properties on the air-cathode MFC. PMID:26122090

  17. La2NiO4+δ infiltrated into gadolinium doped ceria as novel solid oxide fuel cell cathodes: Electrochemical performance and impedance modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nicollet, C.; Flura, A.; Vibhu, V.; Rougier, A.; Bassat, J. M.; Grenier, J. C.

    2015-10-01

    This paper is devoted to the study of composite cathodes of La2NiO4+δ infiltrated into a Gd-doped ceria backbone. Porous Gd-doped ceria backbones are screen printed onto yttria-stabilized zirconia or Gd-doped ceria dense electrolytes, and infiltrated with a La and Ni nitrate solution (2:1 stoichiometry ratio). The influence of the preparation parameters on the polarization resistance, such as the concentration of the infiltration solution, the amount of infiltrated phase, the annealing temperature, the thickness of the electrode, and the nature of the electrolyte, is characterized by impedance spectroscopy performed on symmetrical cells. The optimization of these parameters results in a decrease of the polarization resistance down to 0.15 Ω cm2 at 600 °C. Using the Adler-Lane-Steele model, the modelling of the impedance diagrams leads to the determination of the ionic conductivity as well as the surface exchange rate of the infiltrated electrode.

  18. Microbial fuel cell treatment of fuel process wastewater

    DOEpatents

    Borole, Abhijeet P; Tsouris, Constantino

    2013-12-03

    The present invention is directed to a method for cleansing fuel processing effluent containing carbonaceous compounds and inorganic salts, the method comprising contacting the fuel processing effluent with an anode of a microbial fuel ell, the anode containing microbes thereon which oxidatively degrade one or more of the carbonaceous compounds while producing electrical energy from the oxidative degradation, and directing the produced electrical energy to drive an electrosorption mechanism that operates to reduce the concentration of one or more inorganic salts in the fuel processing effluent, wherein the anode is in electrical communication with a cathode of the microbial fuel cell. The invention is also directed to an apparatus for practicing the method.

  19. High performance, high durability non-precious metal fuel cell catalysts

    DOEpatents

    Wood, Thomas E.; Atanasoski, Radoslav; Schmoeckel, Alison K.

    2016-03-15

    This invention relates to non-precious metal fuel cell cathode catalysts, fuel cells that contain these catalysts, and methods of making the same. The fuel cell cathode catalysts are highly nitrogenated carbon materials that can contain a transition metal. The highly nitrogenated carbon materials can be supported on a nanoparticle substrate.

  20. Fuel cells: A survey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crowe, B. J.

    1973-01-01

    A survey of fuel cell technology and applications is presented. The operating principles, performance capabilities, and limitations of fuel cells are discussed. Diagrams of fuel cell construction and operating characteristics are provided. Photographs of typical installations are included.

  1. Miniature Oxidizer Ionizer for a Fuel Cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hartley, Frank

    2006-01-01

    A proposed miniature device for ionizing the oxygen (or other oxidizing gas) in a fuel cell would consist mostly of a membrane ionizer using the same principles as those of the device described in the earlier article, Miniature Bipolar Electrostatic Ion Thruster (NPO-21057). The oxidizing gas would be completely ionized upon passage through the holes in the membrane ionizer. The resulting positively charged atoms or molecules of oxidizing gas could then, under the influence of the fringe fields of the ionizer, move toward the fuel-cell cathode that would be part of a membrane/electrode assembly comprising the cathode, a solid-electrolyte membrane, and an anode. The electro-oxidized state of the oxidizer atoms and molecules would enhance transfer of them through the cathode, thereby reducing the partial pressure of the oxidizer gas between the ionizer and the fuel-cell cathode, thereby, in turn, causing further inflow of oxidizer gas through the holes in the membrane ionizer. Optionally the ionizer could be maintained at a positive electric potential with respect to the cathode, in which case the resulting electric field would accelerate the ions toward the cathode.

  2. Solid oxide fuel cell power plant having a fixed contact oxidation catalyzed section of a multi-section cathode air heat exchanger

    DOEpatents

    Saito, Kazuo; Lin, Yao

    2015-02-17

    The multi-section cathode air heat exchanger (102) includes at least a first heat exchanger section (104), and a fixed contact oxidation catalyzed section (126) secured adjacent each other in a stack association. Cool cathode inlet air flows through cool air channels (110) of the at least first (104) and oxidation catalyzed sections (126). Hot anode exhaust flows through hot air channels (124) of the oxidation catalyzed section (126) and is combusted therein. The combusted anode exhaust then flows through hot air channels (112) of the first section (104) of the cathode air heat exchanger (102). The cool and hot air channels (110, 112) are secured in direct heat exchange relationship with each other so that temperatures of the heat exchanger (102) do not exceed 800.degree. C. to minimize requirements for using expensive, high-temperature alloys.

  3. Reduced size fuel cell for portable applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Narayanan, Sekharipuram R. (Inventor); Valdez, Thomas I. (Inventor); Clara, Filiberto (Inventor); Frank, Harvey A. (Inventor)

    2004-01-01

    A flat pack type fuel cell includes a plurality of membrane electrode assemblies. Each membrane electrode assembly is formed of an anode, an electrolyte, and an cathode with appropriate catalysts thereon. The anode is directly into contact with fuel via a wicking element. The fuel reservoir may extend along the same axis as the membrane electrode assemblies, so that fuel can be applied to each of the anodes. Each of the fuel cell elements is interconnected together to provide the voltage outputs in series.

  4. Cobalt-free polycrystalline Ba0.95La0.05FeO3-δ thin films as cathodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Dengjie; Chen, Chi; Dong, Feifei; Shao, Zongping; Ciucci, Francesco

    2014-03-01

    Ba0.95La0.05FeO3-δ (BLF) thin films as electrodes for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells are prepared on single-crystal yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) substrates by pulsed laser deposition. The phase structure, surface morphology and roughness of the BLF thin films are characterized by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy is used to analyze the compositions of the deposited thin film and the chemical state of transition metal. The dense thin film exhibits a polycrystalline perovskite structure with a low surface roughness and a high oxygen vacancy concentration on the surface. Ag (paste or strip) and Au (strip) are applied on both surfaces of the symmetric cells as current collectors to evaluate electrochemical performance of the thin films. The electrode polarization resistances of the symmetric cells are found to be lower than those of most cobalt-free thin-film electrodes, e.g., 0.437 Ω cm2 at 700 °C and 0.21 atm. The oxygen reduction reaction mechanism of the BLF cathode in symmetric cells is studied by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy thanks to the equivalent fitting analysis. Both the oxygen surface exchange reaction and charge transfer are shown to determine the overall oxygen reduction reaction.

  5. Electrode design for low temperature direct-hydrocarbon solid oxide fuel cells

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Fanglin; Zhao, Fei; Liu, Qiang

    2015-10-06

    In certain embodiments of the present disclosure, a solid oxide fuel cell is described. The solid oxide fuel cell includes a hierarchically porous cathode support having an impregnated cobaltite cathode deposited thereon, an electrolyte, and an anode support. The anode support includes hydrocarbon oxidation catalyst deposited thereon, wherein the cathode support, electrolyte, and anode support are joined together and wherein the solid oxide fuel cell operates a temperature of 600.degree. C. or less.

  6. Electrode Design for Low Temperature Direct-Hydrocarbon Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chen, Fanglin (Inventor); Zhao, Fei (Inventor); Liu, Qiang (Inventor)

    2015-01-01

    In certain embodiments of the present disclosure, a solid oxide fuel cell is described. The solid oxide fuel cell includes a hierarchically porous cathode support having an impregnated cobaltite cathode deposited thereon, an electrolyte, and an anode support. The anode support includes hydrocarbon oxidation catalyst deposited thereon, wherein the cathode support, electrolyte, and anode support are joined together and wherein the solid oxide fuel cell operates a temperature of 600.degree. C. or less.

  7. Design and development of a cathode processor for electrometallurgical treatment of spent nuclear fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Brunsvold, A. R.; Roach, P. D.; Westphal, B. R.

    1999-11-24

    The electrometallurgical processing of spent fuel developed at Argonne National Laboratory produces a cathode which contains dendrites of heavy metal (principally U), salts, and residual cadmium. The cathode requires further treatment which is accomplished by loading it into a cathode processor to first purify and then consolidate the heavy metal. The principal steps in cathode processing are: the cathode is loaded into a crucible and both loaded into the cathode processor; the crucible is heated under vacuum to an intermediate temperature to distill the salt and cadmium from the crucible; the crucible is heated further to melt and consolidate the heavy metal; the crucible and charge are then cooled forming a heavy metal ingot in the crucible mold. The cathode processor development program has progressed through the design, fabrication, qualification, and demonstration phases. Two identical units were built. One (a prototype unit) has been installed at Argonne's site in Illinois and the other (the production unit) has been installed in the Fuel Conditioning Facility (FCF) at Argonne's Idaho site. Both units are presently in operation. The most recent activities completed in the FCF fuel processing project were the EBR-II driver fuel and blanket fuel demonstration phases. All of the cathode processor success criteria were met during these demonstration phases. These included finalizing the operation conditions applicable to irradiated fuel and process throughput criteria.

  8. Combustion synthesis of Sm 0.5Sr 0.5CoO 3- x and La 0.6Sr 0.4CoO 3- x nanopowders for solid oxide fuel cell cathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bansal, Narottam P.; Zhong, Zhimin

    Nanopowders of Sm 0.5Sr 0.5CoO 3- x (SSC) and La 0.6Sr 0.4CoO 3- x (LSC) compositions, which are being investigated as cathode materials for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC), were synthesized by a solution-combustion method using metal nitrates and glycine as fuel. Development of crystalline phases in the as-synthesized powders after heat treatments at various temperatures was monitored by X-ray diffraction (XRD). Perovskite phase in LSC formed more readily than in SSC. Single-phase perovskites were obtained after heat treatment of the combustion synthesized LSC and SSC powders at 1000 and 1200 °C, respectively. The as-synthesized powders had an average particle size of ∼12 nm as determined from X-ray line broadening analysis using the Scherrer equation. Average grain size of the powders increased with increase in calcination temperature. Morphological analysis of the powders calcined at various temperatures was done by scanning electron microscopy (SEM).

  9. Combustion Synthesis of Sm0.5Sr0.5CoO3-x and La0.6Sr0.4CoO3-x Nanopowders for Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Cathodes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bansal, Narottam P.; Zhong, zhimin

    2005-01-01

    Nanopowders of Sm0.5Sr0.5CoO(3-x) (SSC) and La0.6Sr0.4CoO(3-x) (LSC) compositions, which are being investigated as cathode materials for intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells, were synthesized by a solution-combustion method using metal nitrates and glycine as fuel. Development of crystalline phases in the as-synthesized powders after heat treatments at various temperatures was monitored by x-ray diffraction. Perovskite phase in LSC formed more readily than in SSC. Single phase perovskites were obtained after heat treatment of the combustion synthesized LSC and SSC powders at 1000 and 1200 C, respectively. The as-synthesized powders had an average particle size of 12 nm as determined from x-ray line broadening analysis using the Scherrer equation. Average grain size of the powders increased with increase in calcination temperature. Morphological analysis of the powders calcined at various temperatures was done by scanning electron microscopy.

  10. Methods of conditioning direct methanol fuel cells

    DOEpatents

    Rice, Cynthia; Ren, Xiaoming; Gottesfeld, Shimshon

    2005-11-08

    Methods for conditioning the membrane electrode assembly of a direct methanol fuel cell ("DMFC") are disclosed. In a first method, an electrical current of polarity opposite to that used in a functioning direct methanol fuel cell is passed through the anode surface of the membrane electrode assembly. In a second method, methanol is supplied to an anode surface of the membrane electrode assembly, allowed to cross over the polymer electrolyte membrane of the membrane electrode assembly to a cathode surface of the membrane electrode assembly, and an electrical current of polarity opposite to that in a functioning direct methanol fuel cell is drawn through the membrane electrode assembly, wherein methanol is oxidized at the cathode surface of the membrane electrode assembly while the catalyst on the anode surface is reduced. Surface oxides on the direct methanol fuel cell anode catalyst of the membrane electrode assembly are thereby reduced.

  11. Evaluation of low-cost cathode catalysts for high yield biohydrogen production in microbial electrolysis cell.

    PubMed

    Wang, L; Chen, Y; Ye, Y; Lu, B; Zhu, S; Shen, S

    2011-01-01

    As an ideal fuel due to the advantages of no pollution, high combustion heat and abundant sources, hydrogen gas can be produced from organic matter through the electrohydrogenesis process in microbial electrolysis cells. But in many MECs, platinum is often used as catalyst, which limits the practical applications of MECs. To reduce the cost of the MECs, Ni-based alloy cathodes were developed by electrodepositing. In this paper hydrogen production using Ni-W-P cathode was studied for the first time in a single-chamber membrane-free MEC. At an applied voltage of 0.9 V, MECs with Ni-W-P cathodes obtained a hydrogen production rate of 1.09 m3/m3/day with an cathodic hydrogen recovery of 74%, a Coulombic efficiency of 56% and an electrical energy efficiency relative to electrical input of 139%, which was the best result of reports in this study. The Ni-W-P cathode demonstrated a better electrocatalytic activity than the Ni-Ce-P cathode and achieved a comparable performance to the Pt cathode in terms of hydrogen production rate, Coulombic efficiency, cathodic hydrogen recovery and electrical energy efficiency at 0.9 V. PMID:21278465

  12. Regenerative fuel cell engineering - FY99

    SciTech Connect

    Michael A. Inbody; Rodney L. Borup; James C. Hedstrom; Jose Tafoya; Byron Morton; Lois Zook; Nicholas E. Vanderborgh

    2000-01-01

    The authors report the work conducted by the ESA-EPE Fuel Cell Engineering Team at Los Alamos National Laboratory during FY99 on regenerative fuel cell system engineering. The work was focused on the evaluation of regenerative fuel cell system components obtained through the RAFCO program. These components included a 5 kW PEM electrolyzer, a two-cell regenerative fuel cell stack, and samples of the electrolyzer membrane, anode, and cathode. The samples of the electrolyzer membrane, anode, and cathode were analyzed to determine their structure and operating characteristics. Tests were conducted on the two-cell regenerative fuel cell stack to characterize its operation as an electrolyzer and as a fuel cell. The 5 kW PEM electrolyzer was tested in the Regenerative Fuel Cell System Test Facility. These tests served to characterize the operation of the electrolyzer and, also, to verify the operation of the newly completed test facility. Future directions for this work in regenerative fuel cell systems are discussed.

  13. Electrolytic Reduction of Spent Nuclear Oxide Fuel -- Effects of Fuel Form and Cathode Containment Materials on Bench-Scale Operations

    SciTech Connect

    S. D. Herrmann

    2007-09-01

    A collaborative effort between the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) and Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) is underway per an International Nuclear Energy Research Initiative to advance the development of a pyrochemical process for the treatment of spent nuclear oxide fuel. To assess the effects of specific process parameters that differ between oxide reduction operations at INL and KAERI, a series of 4 electrolytic reduction runs will be performed with a single salt loading of LiCl-Li2O at 650 °C using a test apparatus located inside of a hot cell at INL. The spent oxide fuel for the tests will be irradiated UO2 that has been subjected to a voloxidation process to form U3O8. The primary variables in the 4 electrolytic reduction runs will be fuel basket containment material and Li2O concentration in the LiCl salt. All 4 runs will be performed with comparable fuel loadings (approximately 50 g) and fuel compositions and will utilize a platinum anode and a Ni/NiO reference electrode. The first 2 runs will elucidate the effect of fuel form on the electrolytic reduction process by comparison of the above test results with U3O8 versus results from previous tests with UO2. The first 3 runs will investigate the impact that the cathode containment material has on the electrolytic reduction of spent oxide fuel. The 3rd and 4th runs will investigate the effect of Li2O concentration on the reduction process with a porous MgO cathode containment.

  14. Clean energy from a carbon fuel cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kacprzak, Andrzej; Kobyłecki, Rafał; Bis, Zbigniew

    2011-12-01

    The direct carbon fuel cell technology provides excellent conditions for conversion of chemical energy of carbon-containing solid fuels directly into electricity. The technology is very promising since it is relatively simple compared to other fuel cell technologies and accepts all carbon-reach substances as possible fuels. Furthermore, it makes possible to use atmospheric oxygen as the oxidizer. In this paper the results of authors' recent investigations focused on analysis of the performance of a direct carbon fuel cell supplied with graphite, granulated carbonized biomass (biocarbon), and granulated hard coal are presented. The comparison of the voltage-current characteristics indicated that the results obtained for the case when the cell was operated with carbonized biomass and hard coal were much more promising than those obtained for graphite. The effects of fuel type and the surface area of the cathode on operation performance of the fuel cell were also discussed.

  15. Inactive end cell assembly for fuel cells for improved electrolyte management and electrical contact

    DOEpatents

    Yuh, Chao-Yi; Farooque, Mohammad; Johnsen, Richard

    2007-04-10

    An assembly for storing electrolyte in a carbonate fuel cell is provided. The combination of a soft, compliant and resilient cathode current collector and an inactive anode part including a foam anode in each assembly mitigates electrical contact loss during operation of the fuel cell stack. In addition, an electrode reservoir in the positive end assembly and an electrode sink in the negative end assembly are provided, by which ribbed and flat cathode members inhibit electrolyte migration in the fuel cell stack.

  16. Fuel cells seminar

    SciTech Connect

    1996-12-01

    This year`s meeting highlights the fact that fuel cells for both stationary and transportation applications have reached the dawn of commercialization. Sales of stationary fuel cells have grown steadily over the past 2 years. Phosphoric acid fuel cell buses have been demonstrated in urban areas. Proton-exchange membrane fuel cells are on the verge of revolutionizing the transportation industry. These activities and many more are discussed during this seminar, which provides a forum for people from the international fuel cell community engaged in a wide spectrum of fuel cell activities. Discussions addressing R&D of fuel cell technologies, manufacturing and marketing of fuel cells, and experiences of fuel cell users took place through oral and poster presentations. For the first time, the seminar included commercial exhibits, further evidence that commercial fuel cell technology has arrived. A total of 205 papers is included in this volume.

  17. Water injected fuel cell system compressor

    DOEpatents

    Siepierski, James S.; Moore, Barbara S.; Hoch, Martin Monroe

    2001-01-01

    A fuel cell system including a dry compressor for pressurizing air supplied to the cathode side of the fuel cell. An injector sprays a controlled amount of water on to the compressor's rotor(s) to improve the energy efficiency of the compressor. The amount of water sprayed out the rotor(s) is controlled relative to the mass flow rate of air inputted to the compressor.

  18. Lan+1NinO3n+1 (n = 2 and 3) phases and composites for solid oxide fuel cell cathodes: Facile synthesis and electrochemical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, Rakesh K.; Burriel, Mónica; Dessemond, Laurent; Bassat, Jean-Marc; Djurado, Elisabeth

    2016-09-01

    In this work we present a modified citrate-nitrate route using citric acid as a chelating agent as an effective and facile strategy to obtain nanocrystalline La3Ni2O7+δ (L3N2) and La4Ni3O10-δ (L4N3) powders for the preparation of solid oxide fuel cell cathodes. Both samples crystallize in a Fmmm orthorhombic layered Lan+1NinO3n+1 Ruddlesden-Popper structure, with n = 2 and 3, respectively. The oxygen non-stoichiometry, determined by TGA is equal to 0.05 and 0.06 for L3N2 and L4N3, respectively. The thermal expansion coefficient values of L3N2 and L4N3 are 11.0 × 10-6 K-1 and 11.5 × 10-6 K-1, respectively. This study focused on L3N2, L4N3 and on novel composite electrodes with CGO (Ce0.9Gd0.1O2-δ): L3N2-CGO and L4N3-CGO with a view to taking advantage of their complimentary properties, i.e. high ionic conductivity of CGO and high electronic conductivity of Lan+1NinO3n+1 (n = 2 and 3). A significant improvement of the polarization resistance, from 1.0 to 0.03 Ω cm2 and from 1.5 to 0.52 Ω cm2 at 700 °C, is obtained when 50 wt% CGO is added to L3N2 and L4N3, respectively. In addition, the L3N2-CGO composite shows good long-term stability at 900 °C for 2 weeks in air, confirming its suitability as a SOFC cathode.

  19. Liquid plasma sprayed nano-network La0.4Sr0.6Co0.2Fe0.8O3/Ce0.8Gd0.2O2 composite as a high-performance cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Shan-Lin; Li, Chang-Jiu; Li, Cheng-Xin; Yang, Guan-Jun; Huang, Kevin; Liu, Meilin

    2016-09-01

    Here, we investigate the feasibility of using a liquid plasma spray process as a novel method for the cost-effective fabrication of a nanonetwork of La0.4Sr0.6Co0.2Fe0.8O3-δ (LSCF) and Ce0.8Gd0.2O2-δ (GDC) composite as a high-performance cathode for intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells. A suspension containing well-dispersed nanosized GDC particles in an LSCF precursor solution is designed as the feedstock. The effects of GDC concentration in the suspension on the phase composition, microstructure, and electrochemical performance of the resulting cathode are studied. When the GDC concentration increases to 15 g L-1, the nanosized GDC particles distribute uniformly and continuously on the LSCF backbone to form a porous network structure. The electrochemical studies further indicate that the cathode polarization decreased with the increase in GDC concentration from 0 g L-1 to 15 g L-1, whereas a further increase in the GDC concentration increases the cathode polarization instead. At 600 and 750 °C, the cathode prepared using 15 g L-1 GDC concentration exhibits an impressive area-specific polarization resistance (Rp) of 0.1 Ω cm2 and 0.009 Ω cm2, respectively. Finally, the Rp of the optimal cathode almost does not change after the isothermal dwelling at 650 °C for 350 h.

  20. Micro-electro-mechanical systems phosphoric acid fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Sopchak, David A.; Morse, Jeffrey D.; Upadhye, Ravindra S.; Kotovsky, Jack; Graff, Robert T.

    2010-08-17

    A phosphoric acid fuel cell system comprising a porous electrolyte support, a phosphoric acid electrolyte in the porous electrolyte support, a cathode electrode contacting the phosphoric acid electrolyte, and an anode electrode contacting the phosphoric acid electrolyte.