International Journal of Energy Research, Vol.45, No.2, 2277-2291, 2021
Porous polyether sulfone for direct methanol fuel cell applications: Structural analysis
Porous poly ether sulfone (PES) membranes were prepared using two different solvents which wereN-methyl-2-pyrrolidone and dimethylacetamide (DMAc) via dry/wet non-solvent phase inversion (NIPS) techniques. PES with the compositions of 18 wt% is prepared for each dope solution. During the membrane casting process, 0 to 5 minutes delay prior to immersion in coagulant bath is set in order to allow solvent evaporation to take place. Water is used as the non-solvent for solvent exchange process. The prepared membranes are characterised based on their morphological aspect using scanning electron microscopy towards the effect of solvent evaporation time and solution viscosity. The changes in proton conductivity, methanol permeability, water uptake and hydrophilicity/hydrophobicity behaviours are also studied. Conclusively, the 18 wt% PES membranes prepared with DMAc as solvent at 3 minutes solvent evaporation time exhibited desirable pore size for proton conduction (0.04 x 10(-3) Scm(-1)) and methanol resistant effect that consequently contribute to considerably low methanol permeability rate at 0.06 x 10(-7)cm(2)s(-1)which could elevate the direct methanol fuel cell performance.