Loughborough University
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Polyaniline as electrolyte in polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells

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posted on 2012-12-04, 13:59 authored by Florian Treptow
The applications of polyaniline (PAni) for use as electrolyte in Polymer-Electrolyte-Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFC) were investigated. P Ani was dissolved in N-methyl pyrrolidone (NMP), cast as Emeraldine Base membranes (EB) and then doped with halide acids. The proton conductivity was measured according to Hittorf. The chloride ion distribution within the membrane was evaluated using energy-dispersive-X-ray analysis (EDX) and photometric analysers and the diffusion coefficient was calculated. The specific resistance was determined using conventional 4-point measurement. Halide doped membranes were found to be proton conducting, however, during cell operation halide removal occurred causing a rapid decline in the cell performance. The maximum power density achieved was O.3m W·cm-2 for a 70J.1m thick membrane saturate with chloride between 3,5 and 4,5mgchloride per gPAni. Composite membranes with phosphotungstic acid (PWA), antimonic acid (AA) and zirconium phosphate (ZP) were developed and also tested in a standard measuring fuel cell. While membranes produced via ion exchange (ZP) showed the same result like halide doped ones, AA composite membranes showed a stable voltage and current results. The highest measured outcome of 373.3mW·cm-2 was found with a PWA membrane, produced through dispersing 3g of phosphotungstic acid in 300ml of a 1% polyanilinelNMP solution. It was also observed, that the higher power density was obtained from the fuel cell which uses the lower-loaded membrane. It is clear that a positive effect on the cell performance is given by the addition of phosphotungstic acid to the polyaniline membrane. Therefore, the saturation of PW A have to be taken into account to not lower the power density.



  • Aeronautical, Automotive, Chemical and Materials Engineering


  • Chemical Engineering


© Florian Treptow

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A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.


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