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Water-Retention Proton Exchange Membrane Assisted with Various Nanostructures Silica

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Silicon nanocomposite with various structures was designed to improve the water-retention ability of the proton exchange membrane for elevated temperature performance. The results show that the amorphous SiO2 nanoparticles and SiO2 nanocrystals with size of several nanometers have little influence on the membrane preparation and possess good water-retention of 5.82∼7.11 wt% at temperature of 100 °C. The mesoporous SiO2/Nafion membrane, however, have large gas crossover of 5.54 mA cm−2 because of the grain size increase during the crystallinity procedure. The results also demonstrate that the crystallinity of the silica in the membrane significantly increases the water-retention membrane stability. The amorphous SiO2/Nafion membrane has obvious performance decay after a soaked period in water for 20 days with a considerable silicon loss about 25.3%. However, with the crystallinity of the silica, the nanocrystals SiO2/Nafion membrane and the mesoporous SiO2/Nafion membrane have little OCV and power output decrease after the soaking period. The nanocrystals SiO2/Nafion membrane is most favorable PEM because the superiorities of outstanding initial performance and excellent durability. After the soaking period, the maximum power output still can achieve 451 mW/cm−2 at condition of 100 °C and 50 RH%.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: February 1, 2009

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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