Title: 3D microstructure effects in Ni-YSZ anodes : influence of TPB lengths on the electrochemical performance
Authors : Pecho, Omar M.
Mai, Andreas
Münch, Beat
Hocker, Thomas
Flatt, Robert J.
Holzer, Lorenz
Published in : Materials
Volume(Issue) : 8
Issue : 10
Pages : 7129
Pages to: 7144
Publisher / Ed. Institution : MDPI AG
Issue Date: 2015
Language : Englisch / English
Subjects : Degradation; Solid oxide fuel cells; Map; Microstructure
Subject (DDC) : 540: Chemie
Abstract: 3D microstructure-performance relationships in Ni-YSZ anodes for electrolyte-supported cells are investigated in terms of the correlation between the triple phase boundary (TPB) length and polarization resistance (Rpol). Three different Ni-YSZ anodes of varying microstructure are subjected to eight reduction-oxidation (redox) cycles at 950 °C. In general the TPB lengths correlate with anode performance. However, the quantitative results also show that there is no simplistic relationship between TPB and Rpol. The degradation mechanism strongly depends on the initial microstructure. Finer microstructures exhibit lower degradation rates of TPB and Rpol. In fine microstructures, TPB loss is found to be due to Ni coarsening, while in coarse microstructures reduction of active TPB results mainly from loss of YSZ percolation. The latter is attributed to weak bottlenecks associated with lower sintering activity of the coarse YSZ. The coarse anode suffers from complete loss of YSZ connectivity and associated drop of TPBactive by 93%. Surprisingly, this severe microstructure degradation did not lead to electrochemical failure. Mechanistic scenarios are discussed for different anode microstructures. These scenarios are based on a model for coupled charge transfer and transport, which allows using TPB and effective properties as input. The mechanistic scenarios describe the microstructure influence on current distributions, which explains the observed complex relationship between TPB lengths and anode performances. The observed loss of YSZ percolation in the coarse anode is not detrimental because the electrochemical activity is concentrated in a narrow active layer. The anode performance can be predicted reliably if the volume-averaged properties (TPBactive, effective ionic conductivity) are corrected for the so-called short-range effect, which is particularly important in cases with a narrow active layer.
Departement: School of Engineering
Organisational Unit: Institute of Computational Physics (ICP)
Publication type: Beitrag in wissenschaftlicher Zeitschrift / Article in scientific Journal
DOI : 10.3390/ma8105370
ISSN: 1996-1944
URI: https://digitalcollection.zhaw.ch/handle/11475/1624
Appears in Collections:Publikationen School of Engineering

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