Increased water retention in polymer electrolyte membranes at elevated temperatures assisted by capillary condensation

Moon Jeong Park, Kenneth H. Downing, Andrew Jackson, Enrique D. Gomez, Andrew M. Minor, David Cookson, Adam Z. Weber, Nitash P. Balsara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

185 Scopus citations

Abstract

We establish a new systematic methodology for controlling the water retention of polymer electrolyte membranes. Block copolymer membranes comprising hydrophilic phases with widths ranging from 2 to 5 nm become wetter as the temperature of the surrounding air is increased at constant relative humidity. The widths of the moist hydrophilic phases were measured by cryogenic electron microscopy experiments performed on humid membranes. Simple calculations suggest that capillary condensation is important at these length scales. The correlation between moisture content and proton conductivity of the membranes is demonstrated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3547-3552
Number of pages6
JournalNano letters
Volume7
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering

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