Enhanced sol–gel hybridization of Nafion membrane for fuel cell applications

2018-08-13T16:05:45Z (GMT) by Marino Lavorgna
Fuel cell technology is one of the emerging energy technologies, both for stationary applications (block power stations) and mobile applications (portable electrical devices). In a standard fuel cell the chemical energy of fuels such as CH3OH or H2 is transformed to electrical energy. High energy efficiency and low emissions make the fuel cell technology attractive compared to traditional combustion engines. The main obstacles to large scale commercialisation of Polymer Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFC) are rooted in the proton conducting membrane, which is the most important component of this device. The primary requisites of the hydrated membranes are: (a) high proton conductivity at relatively low humidity levels; (b) low fuel permeability; (c) high chemical, thermal and mechanical stability. Among the different polymeric membranes studied for fuel cell applications only the perfluorosulphonic acid ionomers membranes, such as Nafion®, are actually used commercially. [Continues.]