Anode materials for mitigating hydrogen starvation effects in PEM fuel cells

Ion C. Halalay, Swathy Swathirajan, Belabbes Merzougui, Michael P. Balogh, Gregory C. Garabedian, Michael K. Carpenter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Localized hydrogen starvation at a polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell anode can lead to the formation of local cells in the membrane electrode assembly, which cause performance degradation at the fuel cell cathode due to carbon corrosion. We propose using hydrogen spillover materials as a hydrogen reservoir in the fuel cell anode in order to compensate for any temporary proton deficit caused by local flooding of the anode channels. We tested composite electrodes containing Ti O2, W Si2, and W O3, and compared their behavior to that of commercial Pt/Vulcan XC-72 carbon (Pt/Vu) benchmark catalysts, using gas-diffusion electrodes in a 0.1 M HCl O 4 solution and pellet electrodes in a 0.5 M H2 S O 4 solution. While Ti O2 yields no benefits, both W Si 2 and W O3 can significantly delay the voltage excursion of the gas-diffusion electrode into the oxygen evolution region upon the cessation of hydrogen flow. X-ray data indicate that the beneficial effect of W Si2 may be caused by W O3, because we observed conversion of W Si2 to W O3 during voltage cycling, without a significant loss in the apparent hydrogen adsorption-desorption area. Electrodes with W O3 yielded the best results, with a hydrogen storage charge higher by a factor of 6 than for the Pt/Vu benchmark.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the Electrochemical Society
Volume158
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFC)
fuel cells
Hydrogen
Anodes
anodes
electrolytes
membranes
Electrodes
polymers
hydrogen
diffusion electrodes
cell anodes
electrodes
gaseous diffusion
Diffusion in gases
Fuel cells
Carbon
cell cathodes
carbon
Hydrogen storage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrochemistry
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Condensed Matter Physics

Cite this

Anode materials for mitigating hydrogen starvation effects in PEM fuel cells. / Halalay, Ion C.; Swathirajan, Swathy; Merzougui, Belabbes; Balogh, Michael P.; Garabedian, Gregory C.; Carpenter, Michael K.

In: Journal of the Electrochemical Society, Vol. 158, No. 3, 2011.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Halalay, Ion C. ; Swathirajan, Swathy ; Merzougui, Belabbes ; Balogh, Michael P. ; Garabedian, Gregory C. ; Carpenter, Michael K. / Anode materials for mitigating hydrogen starvation effects in PEM fuel cells. In: Journal of the Electrochemical Society. 2011 ; Vol. 158, No. 3.
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