Impedance Spectroscopy Measurements of Ionomer Film Oxygen Transport Resistivity in Operating Low-Pt PEM Fuel Cell

Membranes (Basel). 2021 Dec 16;11(12):985. doi: 10.3390/membranes11120985.


The work presents a model for local impedance of low-Pt proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), including cathode pore size distribution and O2 transport along pores and through a thin ionomer film covering Pt/C agglomerates. The model was applied to fit the local impedance spectra of low-Pt fuel cells operated at current densities from 100 to 800 mA cm-2 and recorded by a segmented cell system. Assuming an ionomer film thickness of 10 nm, the fitting returned the product of the dimensionless Henry’s constant of oxygen dissolution in ionomer KH by the oxygen diffusivity DN in the ionomer (KHDN). This parameter allowed us to determine the fundamental O2 transport resistivity RN through the ionomer film in the working electrode under conditions relevant to the realistic operation of PEMFCs. The results show that variation of the operating current density does not affect RN, which remains nearly constant at ≃0.4 s cm-1.

PMID:34940486 | DOI:10.3390/membranes11120985


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