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Issue 40, 2011
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Water, proton, and oxygen transport in high IEC, short side chain PFSA ionomer membranes: consequences of a frustrated network

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Abstract

The effect of ion exchange capacity (IEC) on the water sorption properties of high IEC, short side chain (SSC) PFSA ionomer membranes, and the relationships between water content, proton conductivity, proton mobility, water permeation, oxygen diffusion, and oxygen permeation are investigated. SSC PFSA ionomer membranes possessing 1.3, 1.4, and 1.5 mmol g−1IEC are compared to a series of long side chain (LSC) PFSA ionomer membranes ranging in IEC from 0.9 to 1.13 mmol g−1. At 25 °C, fully-hydrated SSC ionomer membranes are characterized as possessing higher water contents (56–75 vol%), moderate λ values (15–18), high analytical acid concentrations (2–2.8 M), and moderate conductivity (88–115 mS/cm); but lower than anticipated effective proton mobility. Complementary measurements of water permeability, oxygen diffusion, and oxygen permeability also yield lower than expected values given their much higher water contents. Potential benefits afforded by reducing the side chain length of PFSA ionomer membranes, such as increased crystallinity, higher IEC, and high hydrated acid concentration are offset by a less-developed, frustrated hydrophilic percolation network, which provides a motivation for future improvements of transport properties for this class of material.

Graphical abstract: Water, proton, and oxygen transport in high IEC, short side chain PFSA ionomer membranes: consequences of a frustrated network

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Publication details

The article was received on 08 Aug 2011, accepted on 24 Aug 2011 and first published on 13 Sep 2011


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C1CP22559F
Citation: Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2011,13, 18055-18062
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    Water, proton, and oxygen transport in high IEC, short side chain PFSA ionomer membranes: consequences of a frustrated network

    X. Luo, S. Holdcroft, A. Mani, Y. Zhang and Z. Shi, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2011, 13, 18055
    DOI: 10.1039/C1CP22559F

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