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Electrospinning: a method to elaborate membrane-electrode assemblies for fuel cells (SPINAM)
Start date: Jan 1, 2013, End date: Dec 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"This project leads to the development of novel MEAs comprising components elaborated by the electrospinning technique. Proton exchange membranes will be elaborated from electrospun ionomer fibres and characterised. In the first stages of the work, we will use commercial perfluorosulfonic acid polymers, but later we will extend the study to specific partially fluorinated ionomers developed within th project, as well as to sulfonated polyaromatic ionomers. Fuel cell electrodes will be prepared using conducting fibres prepared by electrospinning as supports. Initially we will focus on carbon nanofibres, and then on modified carbon support materials (heteroatom functionalisation, oriented carbons) and finally on metal oxides and carbides. The resultant nanofibres will serve as support for the deposition of metal catalyst particles (Pt, Pt/Co, Pt/Ru). Conventional impregnation routes and also a novel “one pot” method will be used.Detailed (structural, morphological, electrical, electrochemical) characterisation of the electrodes will be carried out in collaboration between partners. The membranes and electrodes developed will be assembled into MEAs using CCM (catalyst coated membrane) and GDE (gas diffusion electrode) approaches and also an original ""membrane coated GDE"" method based on electrospinning. Finally the obtained MEAs will be characterised in situ in an operating fuel cell fed with hydrogen or methanol and the results compared with those of conventional MEAs."
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