Achieving high performance in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) at moderate temperatures (400 – 700 °C) has been a key goal of the fuel cell community because operation at such intermediate temperatures would dramatically lower costs and enhance device lifetimes.
Amongst the three fuel cell components, the cathode in SOFCs remains the most challenging at these temperatures. In this project we will carefully determine electrochemical reaction pathways using the promising bismuth oxide based compounds identified by our Taiwanese counterparts, Professor Kuan-Zong Fung and colleagues at the Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering.
We propose to measure fundamental electrochemical activity using a variety of well-defined electrode structures.Tasks during year 1 will be to develop PLD conditions for depositing bismuth oxide based cathode materials and perform symmetric cell measurements under zero-bias of compositions identified by the Taiwanese partners.
In year 2, we will develop patterning techniques for candidate cathode materials and perform both symmetric (zero bias) and asymmetric (biased) electrochemical measurements to establish active sites and site dependence on bias.
In year 3, we will develop fabrication routes for embedded electrode geometry and deposition of nanoparticle catalysts. We will also measure catalytic activity and characterize activity of selected composites under biased conditions using asymmetric geometry.