07-Dec-2012 - RSC Publishing

MOF-polymer composite membranes to enhance proton conductivity in fuel cells

Nafion (a perfluorosulfonic acid membrane) is widely used in fuel cells to conduct protons, but Nafion membranes are prone to rapid dehydration at low humidity, which results in a loss of conductivity. To overcome this problem, scientists in China have made a metal-organic framework (MOF) containing protonated tertiary amines as intrinsic proton carriers and hydrogen-bonding chains as proton-conducting pathways. A series of composite membranes with different contents of MOF crystals were prepared by blending MOF submicrorods with a polymer for the exploration of further applications of MOFs in fuel cells under low humidity. The MOFs displayed low-humidity proton conductivity.

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