CCS and Power Systems

Advanced Energy Systems - Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

Surface-Modified Electrodes: Enhancing Performance Guided by In-Situ Spectroscopy and Microscopy

Performer: Leland Stanford Junior University

Project No: FE0009620

Project Scope and Technology Readiness Level

This project will develop greatly improved solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cathodes by modifying the surfaces of conventional electrode materials. The effort will identify correlations between performance and the microscopic surface properties of oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) active sites, quantified using novel in-situ spectroscopy, scattering and microscopy techniques, while electrochemical reaction takes place under fuel cell conditions. The project will consist of three main technical tasks: (1) Fabricating ideal thin-film cathodes on single crystal electrolyte substrates and characterizing their ORR activities using current-voltage and impedance spectroscopy measurements; (2) probing the microscopic behavior of cathode thin films using in-situ X-ray spectroscopy, scattering and environmental transmission electron microscopy (TEM) under SOFC-relevant conditions, and correlating them to the ORR activity; and (3) developing surface modification strategies for ideal and commercial LSCF cathodes to dramatically improve the electrochemical activity.

The Technology Readiness Level (TRL) assessment identifies the current state of readiness of the key technologies being developed under the DOE’s Clean Coal Research Program. In FY 12, this project was not assessed.

The TRL assessment process and its results including definition and description of the levels may be found in the "2012 Technology Readiness Assessment-Analysis of Active Research Portfolio".

Project Details