Progress towards new materials for proton exchange membranes (PEM)s in fuel cells (FCs)

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Journal titlePolymer Preprints
Pages2627; # of pages: 2
SubjectProton exchange membrane (PEM); fuel cells (FC); Nafion; perfluorosulfonic acid polymer; polymer-solvent interaction; poly(ether ether ketone) (PEEK); polyarylethers containing naphtalene groups (PAEK-NA); phtalazinones (PPEK)
AbstractProton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells (FC)s are electrochemical devices that convert the chemical energy of a fuel directly and efficiently into electrical and thermal energy. The presently used Nafion type perfluorosulfonic acid polymers have some excellent properties along with a few shortcomings. One of the most serious disadvantages preventing widespread use of FCs is the high cost of the material. Another is the unacceptable methanol permability in the direct methanol FC application. We have been investigating several aspects of FC materials. The first aspect is an investigation of the polymer-solvent interactions that occur during film preparation. During PEM preparation from sulfonated polymer, thin uniform films are usually prepared by casting the polymer solutions from solvents. The literature reports large variations in the proton conductivities of similarly sulfonated polymers, depending on how the PEM was prepared. We have observed that chemical interactions with the various solvents used in the process of PEM preparation may be one of the reasons for the large discrepancies in proton conductivity data existing in the literature. The second aspect is the development of new materials based on cheaper polyarylethers, which are known for their excellent chemical and thermo-oxidative stability. Proton conductivity is introduced into these materials via the incorporation of sulfonic groups, either by post-sulfonation or by direct copolymerization of sulfonated monomers. The sulfonated polymers investigated to date include poly(ether ether ketone) (PEEK), and new classes of polyarylethers containing naphtalene groups (PAEK-NA) and phtalazinones (PPEK). The polyphthalazinones are soluble, thermally stable polymers with very high T2s.
Publication date
PublisherAmerican Chemical Society
Copyright noticeMaterial in this document is covered by the provisions of the Copyright Act, by Canadian laws, policies, regulations and international agreements. Such provisions serve to identify the information source and, in specific instances, to prohibit reproduction of materials without written permission.
AffiliationNRC Institute for Chemical Process and Environmental Technology; National Research Council Canada
Access conditionavailable
Peer reviewedNo
NRC number46468
NPARC number8926018
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Record identifier42eb1b7d-8093-4093-aa01-30dac204dcd4
Record created2009-04-23
Record modified2016-05-09
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