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From Polymer Intercalation in Lamellar hosts to Colloidal Inorganic Dispersion in Polymers : Hybrid Ionomeric Membranes for Application in Medium Temperature Electrochemical Devices

Objective



Our objectives are the development of thermally stable (to 180 C) protonic conducting membranes (o>10 2 Scm 1 ) based on hybrid inorganic organic systems. These are formed by the association of protonic conducting polymers and protonic conducting inorganic materials. The latter are layered solids which can be broken down into nanoscale building blocks by intercalation and exfoliation. These composites can be divided into:
conventional microscale composites,
intercalated and
exfoliated nanocomposites,
and the continuum between the three classes will be explored. Functionalities conferring protonic conductivity will be introduced both onto the thermostable polymer and the inorganic layers by chemical modification including techniques such as grafting and topotactic exchange. The partner laboratories are experienced in the manipulation of two dimensional inorganic materials, and in the conception and development of new methods for the modification of layered solids. Other of the partner laboratories have many years experience in the chemical modification of polymers, and an industrial participant will assure membrane scaling up aspects and, eventually, manufacture.

The materials and membranes will be characterised by a full range of chemical, thermal, spectroscopic, electrical and textural techniques which are available in the partner laboratories.

No proton exchange membrane is currently commercially available for use at such temperatures. Rapid application in electrochemical devices for energy conversion and in electrochemical reactors is therefore foreseen. The partnership includes a research institute and an industry who have complementary expertise in the areas of electrode design, and fuel cell development and manufacture. These two groups will optimise membrane electrode assemblies and test the membranes at 150 C in a prototype cell conceived during the project. Ultimate end users of the proton exchange membranes are the chemical, power generation and automobile industries. The areas convered by the proposal are materials engineering giving membranes with electrical properties for use in clean, environmentally friendly technologies.
The partnership is formed of 2 industrial groups (1 SME), 2 research organisations and 3 university teams. It includes 4 EU countries. Both industrial groups have stated their interest in developing and exploiting a viable product resulting from the successful outcome of the programme of research.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
Address
Place Eugène Bataillon Cc015
34095 Montpellier
France

Participants (6)

FUMA-TECH GESELLSCHAFT FUER FUNKTIONELLE MEMBRANEN UND ANLAGENTECHNOLOGIE MBH
Germany
Address
Am Grubenstollen 11
1327 St Ingbert
ISRIM Scarl - Istituto Superiore di Ricerca e Formazione sui Materiali Speciali per le Tecnologie Avanzate
Italy
Address
Località Pentima Bassa 21
05100 Terni
NUVERA FUEL CELLS EUROPE SRL
Italy
Address
Via Bistolfi 35
20134 Milano
SORAPEC S.A.
France
Address
Rue Carnot 192
94120 Fontenay-sous-bois
UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PERUGIA
Italy
Address
Via Elce Di Sotto 8
06123 Perugia
University of Strathclyde
United Kingdom
Address
Cathedral Street
G1 1XL Glasgow