Technical feasibility of a proton battery with an activated carbon electrode

Heidari, S, Seif Mohammadi, S, Oberoi, A and Andrews, J 2018, 'Technical feasibility of a proton battery with an activated carbon electrode', International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, vol. 43, no. 12, pp. 6197-6209.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Technical feasibility of a proton battery with an activated carbon electrode
Author(s) Heidari, S
Seif Mohammadi, S
Oberoi, A
Andrews, J
Year 2018
Journal name International Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Volume number 43
Issue number 12
Start page 6197
End page 6209
Total pages 13
Publisher Elsevier
Abstract The technical feasibility of a small-scale proton battery with a carbon-based electrode is demonstrated for the first time. The proton battery is one among many potential contributors towards meeting the gargantuan demand for electrical energy storage that will arise with the global shift to zero greenhouse emission, but inherently variable, renewable energy sources. Essentially a proton battery is a reversible PEM fuel cell with an integrated solid-state electrode for storing hydrogen in atomic form, rather than as molecular gaseous hydrogen in an external cylinder. It is thus a hybrid between a hydrogen-fuel-cell and battery-based system, combining advantages of both system types. In principle a proton battery can have a roundtrip energy efficiency comparable to a lithium ion battery. The experimental results reported here show that a small proton battery (active area 5.5 cm2) with a porous activated carbon electrode made from phenolic resin and 10 wt% PTFE binder was able to store in electrolysis (charge) mode very nearly 1 wt% hydrogen, and release on discharge 0.8 wt% in fuel cell (electricity supply) mode. A significant design innovation is the use of a small volume of liquid acid within the porous electrode to conduct protons (as hydronium) to and from the nafion membrane of the reversible cell. Hydrogen gas evolution during charging of the activated carbon electrode was found to be very low until a voltage of around 1.8 V was reached. Future work is being directed towards increasing current densities during charging and discharging, multiple cycle testing, and gaining an improved understanding of the reactions between hydronium and carbon surfaces. © 2018 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC
Subject Engineering not elsewhere classified
Chemical Sciences not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) Activated carbon
Electrical energy storage
Electrochemical hydrogen storage
Proton battery
DOI - identifier 10.1016/j.ijhydene.2018.01.153
Copyright notice © 2018 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC
ISSN 0360-3199
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