Faculté des sciences

Correlation between morphology, water uptake, and proton conductivity in radiation-grafted proton-exchange membranes

Balog, Sandor ; Gasser, Urs ; Mortensen, Kell ; Gubler, Lorenz ; Scherer, Guenther G. ; youcef, Hicham Ben

In: Macromolecular Chemistry and Physics, 2010, vol. 211, no. 6, p. 635-643

An SANS investigation of hydrated proton exchange membranes is presented. Our membranes were synthesized by radiation-induced grafting of ETFE with styrene in the presence of a crosslinker, followed by sulfonation of the styrene. The contrast variation method was used to understand the relationship between morphology, water uptake, and proton conductivity. The membranes are separated into two... Plus

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    Summary
    An SANS investigation of hydrated proton exchange membranes is presented. Our membranes were synthesized by radiation-induced grafting of ETFE with styrene in the presence of a crosslinker, followed by sulfonation of the styrene. The contrast variation method was used to understand the relationship between morphology, water uptake, and proton conductivity. The membranes are separated into two phases. The amorphous phase hosts the water and swells upon hydration, swelling being inversely proportional to the degree of crosslinking. Hydration and proton conductivity exhibit linear dependence on swelling. Proton conductivity and volumetric fraction of water are related by a power law, indicating a percolated network of finely dispersed aqueous pores in the hydrophilic domains.