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Microporous Layer Containing CeO2-Doped 3D Graphene Foam for Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells at Varying Operating Conditions

  • Liang Chen
    Liang Chen
    School of Automotive Studies, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China
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  • Rui Lin*
    Rui Lin
    School of Automotive Studies, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China
    *Email: [email protected]. Tel: 86-021-69583837.
    More by Rui Lin
  • Xiaoting Yu
    Xiaoting Yu
    School of Automotive Studies, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China
    More by Xiaoting Yu
  • Tong Zheng
    Tong Zheng
    School of Automotive Studies, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China
    More by Tong Zheng
  • Mengcheng Dong
    Mengcheng Dong
    School of Automotive Studies, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China
  • Mingyu Lou
    Mingyu Lou
    School of Automotive Studies, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China
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  • Yunyang Ma
    Yunyang Ma
    School of Automotive Studies, Tongji University, Shanghai 201804, China
    More by Yunyang Ma
  • , and 
  • Zhixian Hao
    Zhixian Hao
    School of Chemical Science and Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China
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Cite this: ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2021, 13, 17, 20201–20212
Publication Date (Web):April 25, 2021
https://doi.org/10.1021/acsami.1c03699
Copyright © 2021 American Chemical Society
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Abstract

To improve the interfacial mass-transfer efficiency, microporous layers (MPLs) containing CeO2 nanorods and the CeO2 nano-network were prepared for proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). In order to minimize the contact resistance, the three-dimensional (3D) graphene foam (3D-GF) was used as the carrier for the deposition of CeO2 nanorods and the nano-network. The CeO2-doped 3D-GF anchored at the interface between the catalyst layer and microporous layer manufactured several novel functional protrusions. To evaluate the electrochemical property, the normal MPL, the MPL containing raw 3D-GF, and MPLs containing different kinds of CeO2-doped 3D-GF were used to assemble the membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs). Measurements show that the CeO2-doped 3D-GF improved the reaction kinetics of the cathode effectively. In addition, the hydrophilic CeO2-doped 3D-GF worked as the water receiver to prevent the dehydration of MEAs at dry operating condition. Besides, at a high current density or humid operating condition, the CeO2-doped 3D-GF provided the pathway for water removal. Compared with the CeO2 nanorods, the CeO2 nano-network on 3D-GF revealed a higher adaptability at varying operating conditions. Hence, such composition and structure design of MPL is a promising strategy for the optimization of high-performance PEMFCs.

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The Supporting Information is available free of charge at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsami.1c03699.

  • XRD pattern of 3D-GF; Raman spectra of 3D-GF; the magnified XRD patterns of CeO2 nanorods and CeO2 nano-network on the 3D-GF; the SEM image of MPS; and EDS mapping images of MPS (PDF)

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