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PEM Fuel Cells by Ken S. Chen, Yun Wang

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4.2 ION TRANSPORT AND IONIC CONDUCTIVITY

4.2.1 Proton Transport

Ionic conductivity is an essential feature of electrolyte for fuel cell applications. Because of this feature, the protons produced in the anode are able to transport through the electrolyte to the cathode to react with oxygen. Fuel cells are classified according to the electrolyte material used. At low temperatures (e.g., 80°C), the Nafion or Nafian-based materials exhibit good ionic conductivity and can be fabricated into thin membranes to reduce overall resistance. Gierke and Hsu [3] described the polymeric membrane characteristics using a cluster model in terms of an inverted micellar structure in which the ion-exchange sites are separated from the fluorocarbon backbone, forming ...

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