Anion exchange membrane fuel cells (AEMFC) have evolved significantly as a viable alternative to proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC). An anion exchange membrane (AEM) in an anion exchange membrane fuel cells (AEMFC) conducts hydroxide anions during current flow, which offers several advantages. The oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) is much easier in alkaline environments than in acidic environments that facilitate the use of less expensive non-platinum group metal (PGM) catalysts with high stability in alkaline environments. The hydroxide ions in an AEMFC are generated during electrochemical oxygen reduction at the cathode. They are transported from the cathode to the anode through the anion conducting polymer electrolyte, wherein they combine with hydrogen to form water. The chemical degradation of AEM is largely from nucleophilic attack on the cationic fixed charged sites by hydroxide ions, which results in loss in the number of ion-exchange groups, with a subsequent decrease in OH- ion conductivity.
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