Varying the microphase separation patterns of alkaline polymer electrolytes

Chen Chen, Jing Pan, Juanjuan Han, Ying Wang, Liang Zhu, Michael Anthony Hickner, Lin Zhuang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Alkaline polymer electrolyte fuel cells (APEFCs) are a class of promising energy conversion devices that are attracting ever-growing attention from the academic and industrial energy technology communities. Considerable efforts have been made towards the development of advanced alkaline polymer electrolytes (APEs), and manipulating the balance between high ionic conductivity and low swelling degree is consistently one of the most important trade-offs in APE design. Constructing hydrophilic/hydrophobic microphase-separated morphologies in APEs has long been accepted as an effective way to optimize the ionic conductivity of these materials. However, not all patterns of phase separation lead to high APE ion conductive efficiency. Here we compare two kinds of polysulfone-based APE materials (i.e. self-aggregated quaternary ammonium polysulfone (aQAPSF) and pendant quaternary ammonium polysulfone (pQAPSF)). Experimental and simulation observations unambiguously reveal the existence of distinctly different patterns of microphase separation in aQAPSF and pQAPSF. In aQAPSF, the hydrophobic side chains residing apart from the quaternary ammonium (QA) group help to build broad and percolated pathways, which contribute to boosting the ion conductive efficiency of the material. The aQAPSF membrane with IEC equal to 0.98 mmol g -1 shows ionic conductivity as high as 108.3 mS cm -1 at 80 °C. While in pQAPSF, the introduction of a side chain between the backbone and the cation locates the QA group away from the backbone and helps to build strong hydrophobic networks, which results in limited development of efficient ionic channels. However, when doubling the IEC of pQAPSF to 2.04 mmol g -1 , the conductivity can be increased to 75.1 mS cm -1 at 80 °C, and the hydrophobic network restrains the swelling of pQAPSF effectively (swelling degree is 25.0% at 80 °C). These materials with obvious phase separation showed good chemical stabilities, and can be considered competitive candidates for application in fuel cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4071-4081
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Materials Chemistry A
Volume4
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

Fingerprint

Microphase separation
Polysulfones
Ammonium Compounds
Electrolytes
Polymers
Ionic conductivity
Swelling
Phase separation
Fuel cells
polysulfone P 1700
Ions
Chemical stability
Energy conversion
Ion Channels
Cations
Positive ions
Membranes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Materials Science(all)

Cite this

Chen, Chen ; Pan, Jing ; Han, Juanjuan ; Wang, Ying ; Zhu, Liang ; Hickner, Michael Anthony ; Zhuang, Lin. / Varying the microphase separation patterns of alkaline polymer electrolytes. In: Journal of Materials Chemistry A. 2016 ; Vol. 4, No. 11. pp. 4071-4081.
@article{a1002f9dd38d4646ad5f547dd8097e13,
title = "Varying the microphase separation patterns of alkaline polymer electrolytes",
abstract = "Alkaline polymer electrolyte fuel cells (APEFCs) are a class of promising energy conversion devices that are attracting ever-growing attention from the academic and industrial energy technology communities. Considerable efforts have been made towards the development of advanced alkaline polymer electrolytes (APEs), and manipulating the balance between high ionic conductivity and low swelling degree is consistently one of the most important trade-offs in APE design. Constructing hydrophilic/hydrophobic microphase-separated morphologies in APEs has long been accepted as an effective way to optimize the ionic conductivity of these materials. However, not all patterns of phase separation lead to high APE ion conductive efficiency. Here we compare two kinds of polysulfone-based APE materials (i.e. self-aggregated quaternary ammonium polysulfone (aQAPSF) and pendant quaternary ammonium polysulfone (pQAPSF)). Experimental and simulation observations unambiguously reveal the existence of distinctly different patterns of microphase separation in aQAPSF and pQAPSF. In aQAPSF, the hydrophobic side chains residing apart from the quaternary ammonium (QA) group help to build broad and percolated pathways, which contribute to boosting the ion conductive efficiency of the material. The aQAPSF membrane with IEC equal to 0.98 mmol g -1 shows ionic conductivity as high as 108.3 mS cm -1 at 80 °C. While in pQAPSF, the introduction of a side chain between the backbone and the cation locates the QA group away from the backbone and helps to build strong hydrophobic networks, which results in limited development of efficient ionic channels. However, when doubling the IEC of pQAPSF to 2.04 mmol g -1 , the conductivity can be increased to 75.1 mS cm -1 at 80 °C, and the hydrophobic network restrains the swelling of pQAPSF effectively (swelling degree is 25.0{\%} at 80 °C). These materials with obvious phase separation showed good chemical stabilities, and can be considered competitive candidates for application in fuel cells.",
author = "Chen Chen and Jing Pan and Juanjuan Han and Ying Wang and Liang Zhu and Hickner, {Michael Anthony} and Lin Zhuang",
year = "2016",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1039/c5ta09438k",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "4",
pages = "4071--4081",
journal = "Journal of Materials Chemistry A",
issn = "2050-7488",
publisher = "Royal Society of Chemistry",
number = "11",

}

Varying the microphase separation patterns of alkaline polymer electrolytes. / Chen, Chen; Pan, Jing; Han, Juanjuan; Wang, Ying; Zhu, Liang; Hickner, Michael Anthony; Zhuang, Lin.

In: Journal of Materials Chemistry A, Vol. 4, No. 11, 01.01.2016, p. 4071-4081.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Varying the microphase separation patterns of alkaline polymer electrolytes

AU - Chen, Chen

AU - Pan, Jing

AU - Han, Juanjuan

AU - Wang, Ying

AU - Zhu, Liang

AU - Hickner, Michael Anthony

AU - Zhuang, Lin

PY - 2016/1/1

Y1 - 2016/1/1

N2 - Alkaline polymer electrolyte fuel cells (APEFCs) are a class of promising energy conversion devices that are attracting ever-growing attention from the academic and industrial energy technology communities. Considerable efforts have been made towards the development of advanced alkaline polymer electrolytes (APEs), and manipulating the balance between high ionic conductivity and low swelling degree is consistently one of the most important trade-offs in APE design. Constructing hydrophilic/hydrophobic microphase-separated morphologies in APEs has long been accepted as an effective way to optimize the ionic conductivity of these materials. However, not all patterns of phase separation lead to high APE ion conductive efficiency. Here we compare two kinds of polysulfone-based APE materials (i.e. self-aggregated quaternary ammonium polysulfone (aQAPSF) and pendant quaternary ammonium polysulfone (pQAPSF)). Experimental and simulation observations unambiguously reveal the existence of distinctly different patterns of microphase separation in aQAPSF and pQAPSF. In aQAPSF, the hydrophobic side chains residing apart from the quaternary ammonium (QA) group help to build broad and percolated pathways, which contribute to boosting the ion conductive efficiency of the material. The aQAPSF membrane with IEC equal to 0.98 mmol g -1 shows ionic conductivity as high as 108.3 mS cm -1 at 80 °C. While in pQAPSF, the introduction of a side chain between the backbone and the cation locates the QA group away from the backbone and helps to build strong hydrophobic networks, which results in limited development of efficient ionic channels. However, when doubling the IEC of pQAPSF to 2.04 mmol g -1 , the conductivity can be increased to 75.1 mS cm -1 at 80 °C, and the hydrophobic network restrains the swelling of pQAPSF effectively (swelling degree is 25.0% at 80 °C). These materials with obvious phase separation showed good chemical stabilities, and can be considered competitive candidates for application in fuel cells.

AB - Alkaline polymer electrolyte fuel cells (APEFCs) are a class of promising energy conversion devices that are attracting ever-growing attention from the academic and industrial energy technology communities. Considerable efforts have been made towards the development of advanced alkaline polymer electrolytes (APEs), and manipulating the balance between high ionic conductivity and low swelling degree is consistently one of the most important trade-offs in APE design. Constructing hydrophilic/hydrophobic microphase-separated morphologies in APEs has long been accepted as an effective way to optimize the ionic conductivity of these materials. However, not all patterns of phase separation lead to high APE ion conductive efficiency. Here we compare two kinds of polysulfone-based APE materials (i.e. self-aggregated quaternary ammonium polysulfone (aQAPSF) and pendant quaternary ammonium polysulfone (pQAPSF)). Experimental and simulation observations unambiguously reveal the existence of distinctly different patterns of microphase separation in aQAPSF and pQAPSF. In aQAPSF, the hydrophobic side chains residing apart from the quaternary ammonium (QA) group help to build broad and percolated pathways, which contribute to boosting the ion conductive efficiency of the material. The aQAPSF membrane with IEC equal to 0.98 mmol g -1 shows ionic conductivity as high as 108.3 mS cm -1 at 80 °C. While in pQAPSF, the introduction of a side chain between the backbone and the cation locates the QA group away from the backbone and helps to build strong hydrophobic networks, which results in limited development of efficient ionic channels. However, when doubling the IEC of pQAPSF to 2.04 mmol g -1 , the conductivity can be increased to 75.1 mS cm -1 at 80 °C, and the hydrophobic network restrains the swelling of pQAPSF effectively (swelling degree is 25.0% at 80 °C). These materials with obvious phase separation showed good chemical stabilities, and can be considered competitive candidates for application in fuel cells.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84960539379&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84960539379&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1039/c5ta09438k

DO - 10.1039/c5ta09438k

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84960539379

VL - 4

SP - 4071

EP - 4081

JO - Journal of Materials Chemistry A

JF - Journal of Materials Chemistry A

SN - 2050-7488

IS - 11

ER -