The chemical durabilities of two proton-conducting hydrocarbon polymer electrolyte membranes, sulfonated benzophenone poly(arylene ether ketone) (SPK) semiblock copolymer and sulfonated phenylene poly(arylene ether ketone) (SPP) semiblock copolymer are evaluated under accelerated open circuit voltage (OCV) conditions in a polymer electrolyte fuel cell (PEFC). Post-test characterization of the membrane electrodes assemblies (MEAs) is carried out via gel permeation chromatography (GPC) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. These results are compared with those of the initial MEAs. The SPP cell shows the highest OCV at 1000 h, and, in the post-test analysis, the SPP membrane retains up to 80% of the original molecular weight, based on the GPC results, and 90% of the hydrophilic structure, based on the NMR results. The hydrophilic structure of the SPP membrane is more stable after the durability evaluation than that of the SPK. From these results, the SPP membrane, with its simple hydrophilic structure, which does not include ketone groups, is seen to be significantly more resistant to radical attack. This structure leads to high chemical durability and thus impedes the chemical decomposition of the membrane.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering