Foam Based Gas Diffusion Electrodes for Reversible Alkaline Electrolysis Cells

Wednesday, 8 October 2014: 15:05
Sunrise, 2nd Floor, Jupiter 3 & 5 (Moon Palace Resort)
F. Allebrod, C. Chatzichristodoulou (Department of Energy Conversion and Storage, Technical University of Denmark), and M. B. Mogensen (Technical University of Denmark)
Alkaline electrolysis cells operated at 250 °C and 40 bar have shown to be able to convert electrical energy into chemical energy in the form of hydrogen at very high efficiencies and power densities. Foam based gas diffusion electrodes and a liquid immobilized electrolyte allow the operation of the newly designed electrolysis cell as a fuel cell, but condensation of steam may lead to blocked pores, thereby inhibiting gas diffusion and decreasing the performance of the cell. In the here presented work we present the application of a hydrophobic, porous, and electro-catalytically active layer to the gas diffusion electrodes. A dispersion with PTFE particles of a particle size of about 1 µm in combination with electro-catalysts, such as silver nanotubes, was used to coat the gas diffusion electrodes. Impedance spectroscopy and cyclic voltammetry measurements were performed to determine the electrochemical characteristics of the cell. The thickness of the electrolyte matrix was reduced to 200 µm, thereby achieving a serial resistance and area specific resistance as low as 60 mΩ cm2 and 150 mΩ cm2, respectively, at a temperature of 200 °C and 20 bar pressure. A new production method was developed to increase the cell size from lab scale (1 cm2) to areas like 25 cm2.