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Microstructure and performance of novel Ni anode for hollow fibre solid oxide fuel cells

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Alan Thursfield, Professor Ian Metcalfe


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Nickel anodes were deposited on hollow fibre yttria-stabilised zirconia (YSZ) electrolyte substrates for use in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). The hollow fibres are characterised by porous external and internal surfaces supported by a central gas-tight layer (300 μm total wall thickness and 1.6 mm external diameter). The YSZ hollow fibres were prepared by a phase inversion technique followed by high temperature sintering in the range 1200 to 1400 °C. Ni anodes were deposited on the internal surface by electroless plating involving an initial catalyst deposition step with PdCl2 followed by Ni plating (with a NiSO4, NaH2PO2 and sodium succinate based solution at 70 °C). Fabrication and nickel deposition parameters (nature of solvents, air gap, temperature, electroless bath composition) and heat treatments in oxidising/reducing environments were investigated in order to improve anode and electrolyte microstructure and fuel cell performance. A parallel study of the effect of YSZ sintering temperature, which influences electrolyte porosity, on electrolyte/anode microstructure was performed on mainly dense discs (2.3 mm thick and 15 mm diameter). Complete cells were tested with both disc and hollow fibre design after a La0.2Sr0.8Co0.8Fe0.2O3-δ (LSCF) cathode was deposited by slurry coating and co-fired at 1200 °C. Anodes prepared by Ni electroless plating on YSZ electrolytes (discs and hollow fibres) sintered at lower temperature (1000-1200 °C) benefited from a greater Ni penetration compared to electrolytes sintered at 1400 °C. Further increases in anode porosity and performance were achieved by anode oxidation in air at 1200-1400 °C, followed by reduction in H2 at 800 °C. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Grande F, Thursfield A, Kanawka K, Droushiotis N, Doraswami U, Li K, Kelsall G, Metcalfe I

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Solid State Ionics

Year: 2009

Volume: 180

Issue: 11-13

Pages: 800-804

ISSN (print): 0167-2738

ISSN (electronic): 1872-7689

Publisher: Elsevier BV


DOI: 10.1016/j.ssi.2008.12.038


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