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Technical Briefs

Hydrophilic ePTFE-Based Composite Membranes for PEMFCs

[+] Author and Article Information
Jinjun Shi

Department of Mechanical and Materials Science Engineering, Wright State University, Dayton, OH 45435shijinjun@gmail.com

Bor Jang

Department of Mechanical and Materials Science Engineering, Wright State University, Dayton, OH 45435bor.jang@wright.edu

J. Fuel Cell Sci. Technol 8(1), 014501 (Sep 30, 2010) (4 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4002309 History: Received November 04, 2007; Revised July 24, 2010; Published September 30, 2010; Online September 30, 2010

A hydrophilic expanded poly(tetrafluoroethylene) (ePTFE) based composite membrane was prepared and tested for proton exchange fuel cell applications. The composite membrane was prepared by impregnating hydrophilic ePTFE membrane with 5% Nafion solution (equivalent weight=1000). This new composite membrane showed higher water uptake (12.7%) than that of normal hydrophobic ePTFE based composite membrane (6.3%) and better proton conductivity. Scanning electron microscopy micrographs showed that the hydrophilic ePTFE based membrane can easily form a dense composite membrane while hydrophobic ePTFE based composite membranes tend to have micropores inside. The hydrophilic ePTFE based composite membrane showed better thermal and dimensional stability than recast Nafion membrane.

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Figures

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Figure 1

Four-point proton conductivity cell

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Figure 2

Wettability test of (a) hydrophobic ePTFE and (b) hydrophilic ePTFE

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Figure 3

Cross section of hydrophilic ePTFE based composite membrane

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Figure 4

Cross section of hydrophobic ePTFE based composite membrane

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Figure 5

Water uptake in liquid water

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Figure 6

Proton conductivity at 85°C

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Figure 7

TGA curves of hydrophilic ePTFE based membrane, hydrophobic ePTFE supported membrane, and recast Nafion membrane

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Figure 8

TMA curves of hydrophilic ePTFE based membrane, hydrophobic ePTFE supported membrane, and recast Nafion membrane

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Figure 9

Single cell performance at 60°C and 60% relative humidity

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