460806 Design and Development of Electrolyte Membranes for Solid Alkaline Fuel Cells
Solid alkaline fuel cells (SAFCs) are another system that holds the potential to achieve high-energy conversion efficiency without Pt catalysts. Although most of metal catalysts can be used under alkaline environment, development of durable electrolyte membranes in alkaline media is the key for this technology. We are systematically designing and developing new materials 1,2) from the molecular level to the device level based on organic chemistry3) and quantum chemical simulation4). We have designed a new anionic polyelectrolyte membrane consisting of highly cross-linked and packed ion-exchange sites with aromatic backbone. Each aromatic monomer unit has three ion-exchange sites and the sites can cross-linked with other monomer units. The monomer was polymerized in pores of a porous membrane substrate and the membrane showed high ionic conductivity, exceptionally low fuel cross-over and good chemical stability. Those functionalities can satisfies the anticipated requirements for a viable solid state alkaline fuel cells.