- Analytical application for PEMFC
Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) are devices constructed by a large number of materials, such as electrolyte membranes, catalysts and gas diffusion layers (GDLs). By applying various analyses for the purpose such as the new material search or the material estimation with the degradation test, it is possible to clarify "phenomenon" and "degradation part"
- Three-dimensional analysis of MEA for PEFC
The whole contents of MEA can be grasped using High-resolution X-ray CT without destroying. The porous structure of catalyst layer can be observed by FIB/SEM, and 3D reconstruction image can form from serial section SEM images.
- Application of the latest microscope technique for PEFC
By TEM tomography and image analysis technique, it is possible to obtain coverage rate and other quantitative data of ionomer in PEFC. Regarding core-shell catalyst, element distribution can be analyzed by combining aberration corrected STEM and high sensitive EDX.
- PEFC 3-D Quantitative analysis of Shapes of Catalyst
Estimation for ratio of catalyst which reacts effectively made possible by TEM tomography. In addition, quantitative analysis (ex, coverage of ionomer against carrier) are enabled by detailed analysis for 3-d data.
- PEFC : Aberration corrected STEM-EDX analysis of core-shell nanoparticles.
Clear elemental maps of small nanoparticles can be acquired by combination of aberration correction, high sensitive EDX analysis, and low accelerating voltage measurement (80kV). Distribution of Pt shell thickness in Pd-Pt core-shell structure can be analyzed precisely.
- Three-dimensional analysis of coating conditions of ionomer in catalyst layer before and after cycle test
Image contrast of ionomer is enhanced using Ru electron staining to analyze the morphologies of catalyst, carbon, and ionomer. We can evaluate the difference in coating condition of ionomer between before and after cycle test by Ru electron staining and TEM tomography.
- Morphological analysis of ionomer and catalysis in PEFC's cathode
Distribution of cathode component and segregation of elements greatly influence the fuell cell battery performance. Slight differences between samples can be evaluated by FE-SEM (Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope)，SEM-EDX (Scanning Electron Microscope - Energy Dispersive X-ray spectroscopy)，and FE-EPMA (Field Emission Electron Probe Micro Analyzer).
- PEFC MEA degradation evaluation －Morphological observation and microanalysis－
Changes in morphology and elemental distribution of Membrane Electron Assembly (MEA) are evaluated by EPMA and TEM ,before and after operation of Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell (PEFC) . It is possible to recognize changes due to degragation of MEA, such as presence of Pt dissolved and reprecipitated in electrolyte membrane, element segregation, change of catalyst layer thickness, coarsening of catalyst particles, etc.
- Cross Section Mapping of MEA by SEM,and Top Surface Analysis Catalyst Powder by LEIS
In this study, we introduce the analysis cases of the following two points as the evaluation item about degradations and characteristics of PEFC (Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells).
･Cross section elemental mapping analysis by SEM-EDX (Scanning Electron Microscope - Energy Dispersive X-ray spectroscopy) about the MEA (Membrane Electrode Assembly).
･Elemental analysis of the top surface of the catalyst powder by LEIS (Low Energy Ion Scattering).
- Dgradation Analysis of Chemical Structures of PEFC Electrolyte Membranes and Ionomers
The detailed chemical structure degradation analysis of the ionomer used in the fuel cell is important for interpretation of durability evaluation (proton conductivity, ion exchange capacity, etc.) in accelerated degradation test (H2O2 exposure test, etc.) of the electrolyte membrane and power generation test of the cell.
- Degradation analysis in perfluorinated and hydrocarbon polymer electrolyte membranes
H2O2 exposure tests simulating the membrane degradation caused by H2O2 generated on the electrodes in polymer electrolyte fuel cells were conducted on perfluorinated and hydrocarbon electrolyte membranes to study the difference between the degradation behaviors of the two types of membranes.
- Composition analysis of catalyst layer for PEFC
Compositional analyses of catalyst layers was conducted for the sample before and after OCV (Open Circuit Voltage) test. Structural analyses of supported carbon and electrolyte was also conducted for the same sample. The membrane electrode assembly (MEA) used for the test is composed from Nafion®112 as the electrolyte membrane, Pt/Ru as the anode catalyst, and Pt as the cathode catalyst.
- Evaluation of the aggregate state and the molecular mobility of the ionomer in the solution for PEFC
When fabricating a fuel cell catalyst layer, the power generation performance is varied by changing the solvent used for the ionomer solution. It is possible to analyze the molecular size/mobility in ionomer solutions with different solvent compositions, which is useful in studying the relationship between the ionomer solution conditions and power generation performance.
- AFM Observation of Nafion® Dispersions in Fluid and Evaluation of Size Distribution by GPC-MALS
It is of much importance to observe morphology and evaluate size distribution of fluorinated dispersion because they are intimately interrelated to electrode structure. AFM observation in fluid and GPC-MALS enable us to characterize particles of Nafion® dispersion and its size distribution.
- PEFC Structural Evaluation of Catalyst Layer
Understanding the microstructure and surface properties of the constituent materials of the PEFC catalyst layer (carbon, noble metal particles, electrolyte, PTFE etc.) is necessary for further improvement of the PEFC performance. Here, we introduce the examples of the results of ①water vapor adsorption isotherm of carbon and electrolyte, ②water repellency and wettability of catalyst layer measured by permporometry, ③pore size distribution of catalyst layer measured by mercury intrusion method.
- Pore Size Distributions of PEFC Materials
Understanding the cluster and pore sizes of the electrolyte membrane, catalyst layer and gas diffusion layer is one of the important issues in PEFC research and development. We introduce the results of various pore evaluation on each material.
- Degradation behavior of polymer materials in the high pressure hydrogen gas exposure
Polymer materials have an important role for the hydrogen storage cylinder. But it is not completely clarified how the high pressure hydrogen affects the polymer materials. The degradation behavior of the high density polyethylene molding exposed the high pressure H2 gas is investigated by various analysis methods.
- Degradation analysis for polymer electrolyte membrane by H2O2 vaper exposure test
To simulate the driving environment of polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs), accelerated degradation test system was composed. The degradation mechanism of perfluorosulfonated membrane was investigated by analyzing gases generated from the membrane exposed to H2O2 vapor and structural analysis of degradated membrane.
- Analysis of metal impurities for fuel cells (ICP-MS)
It is known that metal contamination accelerates the degradation of polymer electrolyte fuel cells, therefore the evaluation of metal contamination is important. Analysis of metal impurities using ICP-MS can be applied to investigation of metal contamination from peripheral components.
- PEFC Dispersion state of catalyst ink
The multivariate analysis of the chromatogram is known as the efficient and exact root-cause-analysis technique of unusual products. The differential compounds between samples can be specified by statistical analysis of the enormous organic compounds detected by LC/MS.
- Morphology observation of the component in catalyst ink
Performance of PEFC can be affected by particle size distribution of carbon supported catalyst, dispersion state of ionomer in catalyst ink. Those information can be obtained by submerged AFM and TEM observation.
- Analysis of water in fluorine polyner electrolyte with different side chain
The cell performance of PEFC depends on the water content in the polymer electrolyte membrane. Solid State F-NMR can assign detail chemical structure of ion exchange membrane, and analysis of water in the membrane can be conducted by FT-IR and DSC.
- Water and vapor related characteristics of PEFC electrode materials
Water and vapor treatment in PEFC material affects the cell performance, so water and vapor related characteristics of membrane, catalyst layer and GDL is quite important. Vapor adsorption / desorption measurement and permporometer are useful to obtain those information.
- Nanoscale Raman analysis of carbon materials using AFM-Raman microscopy
AFM-Raman microscopy is a method which allows for both topographic and Raman imaging with nanometer resolution. Here its excellent resolving power on nanoscale structural analysis on carbon materials, e.g. carbon nanotubes and graphene oxides, is demonstrated using highly-stable ‘next generation’ AFM-Raman probes.