Carboxyl-terminated benzimidazole-assisted cross-linked sulfonated poly(ether ether ketone)s for highly conductive PEM with low water uptake and methanol permeability

Miaomiao Han, Gang Zhang, Ke Shao, Hongtao Li, Yang Zhang, Mingyu Li, Shuang Wang, Hui Na

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Scopus citations

Abstract

A carboxyl-terminated benzimidazole trimer was synthesized as a crosslinker by controlling the ratio of 3,3′-diaminobenzidine and isophthalic acid. Composite membranes were obtained by mixing the benzimidazole trimer and sulfonated poly(ether ether ketone) (SPEEK) together. Cross-linked membranes were obtained by heating the composite membranes at 160°C. All of the properties of the cross-linked membranes were significantly increased, including proton conductivity, methanol permeability and water uptake due to the more compact structure compared to the non-cross-linked membranes. The cross-linked SPEEK-BI7 and cross-linked SPEEK-BI11 had excellent proton conductivities (0.22 and 0.19 S cm -1 ) at 80°C, which were higher than that of Nafion 117 (0.125 S cm -1 ). Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) analysis revealed a clear microphase separated structure of cross-linked membranes. Other properties, such as thermal and mechanical stability, required for use as a proton exchange membrane (PEM) have been investigated. The cross-linked membranes showed improved properties over membranes without crosslinking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3246-3252
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry
Volume20
Issue number16
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 9 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Chemistry

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