Crosslinked Sulfonated Polyphenylsulfone (CSPPSU) Membranes for Elevated-Temperature PEM Water Electrolysis
In order to reduce the burden on the environment, there is a need to develop non-fluorinated electrolyte membranes as alternatives to fluorinated electrolyte membranes, and water electrolysis using hydrocarbon-based electrolyte membranes has been studied in recent years. In this paper, for the first time, we report elevated-temperature water electrolysis properties of crosslinked sulfonated polyphenylsulfone (CSPPSU) membranes prepared by sulfonation and crosslinking of hydrocarbon-based PPSU engineering plastics. The sulfone groups of the CSPPSU membrane in water were stable at 85 °C (3600 h) and 150 °C (2184 h). In addition, the polymer structure of the CSPPSU membrane was stable during small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) measurements from room temperature to 180 °C. A current density of 456 mA/cm2 was obtained at 150 °C and 1.8 V in water electrolysis using the CSPPSU membrane and IrO2/Ti as the catalytic electrode for oxygen evolution. The stability of the CSPPSU membrane at elevated temperatures with time was evaluated. There were some issues in the assembly of the CSPPSU membrane and the catalytic electrode. However, the CSPPSU membrane has the potential to be used as an electrolyte membrane for elevated-temperature water electrolysis.
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