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Electrospun Composite Membranes for Alkaline Fuel Cells

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Journal Article - Open Access

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Vanderbilt University Nashville United States

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Electrospun fiber composite anion exchange membranes were created by electrospinning two polymers a chloromethylated polysulfone that would ultimately serve as the hydroxide ion conductor, and an uncharged polyphenylsulfone to limit water swelling and provide mechanical strength to the final membrane. After electrospinning, the chloromethyl groups were converted into quaternary ammonium moieties for hydroxide ion conduction. The polyphenylsulfone fibers were then selectively made to flow and fill the void space in the dual fiber mat, thus forming a dense, defect free membrane. The final membrane morphology was a quaternized polysulfone interconnecting fiber network embedded in a polyphenylsulfone matrix. For a membrane containing 63 vol percent anion-exchange polymer fibers with a fiber IEC of 2.5 mmol g-1, the OH- ion conductivity was high 40 mS cm-1 in 23 deg C water and the equilibrium water swelling at room temperature was low 70 vol percent.

Subject Categories:

  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Electricity and Magnetism

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