. Scientific Frontline: Chemists Have Developed a Guide to Oxygen Electrode Design Strategies

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Chemists Have Developed a Guide to Oxygen Electrode Design Strategies

Structure of perovskite materials for solid oxide electrochemical devices.
Illustration Credit: Et al., Sustainable Energy Technologies and Assessments

The group of scientists created a guide to oxygen electrode design strategies for solid oxide electrochemical devices. The researchers formulated key directions for the chemical and structural design of oxygen electrodes for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) and solid oxide electrolysis cells (SOEC). The scientists published their work on current strategies for improving the electrochemical performance of oxygen electrodes at reduced operating temperatures in the journal Sustainable Energy Technologies and Assessments.

According to the authors of the study, the guide will be useful to scientists whose work is related to the development and design of air electrodes for electrochemical cells.

"Many of the processes in hydrogen energy technology are implemented using fuel cells and electrolysis, in which SOFCs and SOECs are involved. These electrochemical devices are very promising due to their high energy conversion efficiency and wide range of operating characteristics," explains Dmitry Medvedev, Head of the Scientific Laboratory of Hydrogen Energy at UrFU.

Conventional SOFCs and SOECs are designed to operate at high temperatures (above 800°C). New highly conductive electrolyte materials and technologies have reduced the possible operating temperature range to 400-700 °C. At lower temperatures, the processes occurring at the electrodes are characterized by slow kinetics. The search for new materials to create promising electrodes (mainly positrodes) with high electrocatalytic activity is of great importance to create devices that operate efficiently in the low and medium temperature range.

"In terms of structural design, we combined the properties of perovskite electrodes and their layered derivatives. In terms of chemical design, we presented different modifications of traditional complex oxides. These strategies allow us to analyze existing objects in chemical materials science and choose more efficient ways to create optimal oxygen electrode compositions," adds Elena Filonova, Associate Professor at the Department of Physical Chemistry at UrFU.

Energy conversion processes using SOFCs and SOECs include not only the traditional tactics - use of hydrogen, electrolysis of water. They also include new approaches, such as carbon dioxide electrolysis, non-oxidative conversion of hydrocarbons, ammonia synthesis, and others. The research team summarized the traditional and the most relevant trends in the development of oxygen electrodes used in various electrochemical elements.

Reference: The research team included scientists from UrFU, the Institute of High Temperature Electrochemistry UB RAS (Ekaterinburg, Russia), Colorado School of Mines (Colorado, USA), Nanjing Tech University (Nanjing, China), and Curtin University (Perth, Australia).

Published in journalSustainable Energy Technologies and Assessments

Source/CreditUral Federal University

Reference Number: chm041923_01

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