Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Development by Using Novel Plasma Spray Techniques

[+] Author and Article Information
Xinqing Ma

 US Nanocorp®, Inc., 74 Batterson Park Road, Farmington, CT 06032xma@usnanocorp.com

Jinxiang Dai, Heng Zhang, Jeff Roth, T. Danny Xiao, David E. Reisner

 US Nanocorp®, Inc., 74 Batterson Park Road, Farmington, CT 06032

J. Fuel Cell Sci. Technol 2(3), 190-196 (Feb 25, 2005) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.1928928 History: Received March 18, 2004; Revised February 25, 2005

Two plasma spray techniques have been developed to produce membrane-type solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) units with the advantages of consecutive integrated cell fabrication, high efficiency, good cost effectiveness and microstructure tailoring capability. The atmospheric plasma spray (APS) and solution precursor plasma spray (SPPS) processes have demonstrated their capabilities to produce dense electrolyte layers as well as porous electrode layers that are designed particularly for intermediate temperature SOFCs. With a universal plasma spray system, the integrated fabrication of a dense La0.8Sr0.2Ga0.8Mg0.2O3 electrolyte, a porous La0.8Sr0.2MnO3 cathode and a porous Ni+yttrium stabilized zirconia anode was produced using an optimal APS route. SPPS process has demonstrated more flexibility in materials, microstructures, porosities and overall thickness, and has been used successfully to produce a thin 40mol%La2O3-doped CeO2 (LDC40) interlayer (5μm) and a high-porosity Ni+LDC40 anode layer, respectively. In this work we will present the deposition of a variety of electrolyte and electrode layers applied by air plasma spraying or solution precursor plasma spraying. The merits of the two techniques, microstructures of the electrolyte and electrode layers, and performances of the single SOFC units have been evaluated and summarized.

Copyright © 2005 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

SEM morphologies of LSM (a) and LSGM (b) powder feedstock

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Figure 2

Schematic of solution precursor plasma spray process

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Figure 3

SEM microstructural graph of as-sprayed LSM cathode film that is generally porous and includes some unmelted particles and gas porosity

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Figure 4

XRD analysis for LSM and LSGM feedstock powders and as-sprayed deposits. There is no phase transformation for the LSM deposit, but amorphous LSGM phase is verified in plasma sprayed LSGM layer.

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Figure 5

Cross-section observation of as-sprayed LSGM electrolyte layer indicating a high coating density (>97%)

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Figure 6

XRD patterns for the sprayed LSGM electrolyte layer after heat treatment at different temperature. The crystallization of the amorphous phase takes place above 500°C and a complete transition is achieved at 700°C.

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Figure 7

SEM image on the surface of SPPS-formed Ni+LDC anode layer. The layer has a porosity of typical 40%–45% and consists of a number of submicron particles and nanometer pores.

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Figure 8

XRD analysis for SPPS-formed Ni-LDC anode layer

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Figure 13

Plots of power density versus operating temperature in a single cell made by plasma spray method

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Figure 12

Test for open circuit in a single cell at 700°C for nearly 50h with H2∕O2 fuel

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Figure 11

Test for open circuit voltage in a single cell at 300–800°C with H2∕O2 fuel

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Figure 10

Electrochemical impedance spectra for as-sprayed LSGM deposit measured during cooling period from 800°C to 650°C (a) and sintered LSGM pellet tested (b) at temperatures between 650 and 800°C

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Figure 9

Cross section of a membrane-type fuel cell unit fabricated in sequence of air plasma spraying (APS) of LSGM electrolyte layer and solution precursor plasma spraying (SPPS) of LDC interlayer and Ni+LDC anode layer



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