skip to main content
DOE PAGES title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Evaluating microstructure evolution in an SOFC electrode using digital volume correlation

Abstract

Degradation mechanisms within solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) during thermal cycling limit operational start-up times and cell lifetime, and must therefore be better understood and mitigated. This work explores such mechanisms using digital volume correlation (DVC) techniques applied to lab-based X-ray tomograms where the microstructural evolution is evaluated during the operational cycling of a Ni–YSZ/YSZ cell. To emulate reduced start-up times, five tomograms were collected over four operational thermal cycles to 750 °C at various ramp-rates: 3, 10, 20 and 30 °C min –1. Two key features are observed in the 3D strain profiles. Firstly, during low ramp-rates the material produces microscopic channels towards cluster-points. This is thought to be caused by the ceramic skeleton inhibiting the effects of sintering. Secondly, previously unseen macroscopic ‘waves’ developed after high-rate cycling, consisting of linear regions of compression and tension throughout the sample. These wave features decay away from a heterogeneous defect which is thought to be responsible for the non-uniform strain profile. This work demonstrates the first use of sub-micron DVC computations applied to an SOFC exposed to operationally relevant temperatures. Lastly, these findings will assist in the development of new electrode materials from their fabrication to operation, ultimately supporting commercial viabilitymore » of SOFCs.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. UCL, London (United Kingdom)
  2. National Renewable Energy Lab., Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
1485555
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5400-72931
Journal ID: ISSN 2398-4902; SEFUA7
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Sustainable Energy & Fuels
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 2; Journal Issue: 12; Journal ID: ISSN 2398-4902
Publisher:
Royal Society of Chemistry
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
30 DIRECT ENERGY CONVERSION; solid oxide fuel cells; degradation mechanisms; digital volume correlation

Citation Formats

Heenan, T.  M. M., Lu, X., Finegan, Donal P., Robinson, J., Iacoviello, F., Bailey, J. J., Brett, D. J. L., and Shearing, P. R. Evaluating microstructure evolution in an SOFC electrode using digital volume correlation. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1039/C8SE00292D.
Heenan, T.  M. M., Lu, X., Finegan, Donal P., Robinson, J., Iacoviello, F., Bailey, J. J., Brett, D. J. L., & Shearing, P. R. Evaluating microstructure evolution in an SOFC electrode using digital volume correlation. United States. doi:10.1039/C8SE00292D.
Heenan, T.  M. M., Lu, X., Finegan, Donal P., Robinson, J., Iacoviello, F., Bailey, J. J., Brett, D. J. L., and Shearing, P. R. Mon . "Evaluating microstructure evolution in an SOFC electrode using digital volume correlation". United States. doi:10.1039/C8SE00292D. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1485555.
@article{osti_1485555,
title = {Evaluating microstructure evolution in an SOFC electrode using digital volume correlation},
author = {Heenan, T.  M. M. and Lu, X. and Finegan, Donal P. and Robinson, J. and Iacoviello, F. and Bailey, J. J. and Brett, D. J. L. and Shearing, P. R.},
abstractNote = {Degradation mechanisms within solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) during thermal cycling limit operational start-up times and cell lifetime, and must therefore be better understood and mitigated. This work explores such mechanisms using digital volume correlation (DVC) techniques applied to lab-based X-ray tomograms where the microstructural evolution is evaluated during the operational cycling of a Ni–YSZ/YSZ cell. To emulate reduced start-up times, five tomograms were collected over four operational thermal cycles to 750 °C at various ramp-rates: 3, 10, 20 and 30 °C min–1. Two key features are observed in the 3D strain profiles. Firstly, during low ramp-rates the material produces microscopic channels towards cluster-points. This is thought to be caused by the ceramic skeleton inhibiting the effects of sintering. Secondly, previously unseen macroscopic ‘waves’ developed after high-rate cycling, consisting of linear regions of compression and tension throughout the sample. These wave features decay away from a heterogeneous defect which is thought to be responsible for the non-uniform strain profile. This work demonstrates the first use of sub-micron DVC computations applied to an SOFC exposed to operationally relevant temperatures. Lastly, these findings will assist in the development of new electrode materials from their fabrication to operation, ultimately supporting commercial viability of SOFCs.},
doi = {10.1039/C8SE00292D},
journal = {Sustainable Energy & Fuels},
number = 12,
volume = 2,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {9}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Figures / Tables:

Fig. 1 Fig. 1: Experimental set-up for the correlation of lab-based X-ray tomograms using digital volume correlation: (a) sample refinement and geometric set-up for X-ray characterisation and (b) thermal profile with indication of the time at which the five tomograms and four DVC computations were conducted.

Save / Share:

Works referenced in this record:

Thermal Expansion of Nickel-Zirconia Anodes in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells during Fabrication and Operation
journal, January 1998

  • Mori, Masashi
  • Journal of The Electrochemical Society, Vol. 145, Issue 4
  • DOI: 10.1149/1.1838468

Laser-preparation of geometrically optimised samples for X-ray nano-CT: LASER-PREPARATION OF GEOMETRICALLY OPTIMISED SAMPLES FOR X-RAY NANO-CT
journal, May 2017

  • Bailey, J. J.; Heenan, T. M. M.; Finegan, D. P.
  • Journal of Microscopy, Vol. 267, Issue 3
  • DOI: 10.1111/jmi.12577

The relationship between overpotential and the three phase boundary length
journal, July 1996


Novel materials for solid oxide fuel cell technologies: A literature review
journal, October 2017

  • da Silva, Fellipe Sartori; de Souza, Teófilo Miguel
  • International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, Vol. 42, Issue 41
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.ijhydene.2017.08.105

4D nano-tomography of electrochemical energy devices using lab-based X-ray imaging
journal, May 2018


Nickel Depletion and Agglomeration in SOFC Anodes During Long-Term Operation
journal, May 2017


Nondestructive Reconstruction and Analysis of SOFC Anodes Using X-ray Computed Tomography at Sub-50 nm Resolution
journal, January 2008

  • Izzo, John R.; Joshi, Abhijit S.; Grew, Kyle N.
  • Journal of The Electrochemical Society, Vol. 155, Issue 5
  • DOI: 10.1149/1.2895067

Analysis of the three-dimensional microstructure of a solid-oxide fuel cell anode using nano X-ray tomography
journal, February 2011


Analysis of triple phase contact in Ni–YSZ microstructures using non-destructive X-ray tomography with synchrotron radiation
journal, August 2010


Lithiation-Induced Dilation Mapping in a Lithium-Ion Battery Electrode by 3D X-Ray Microscopy and Digital Volume Correlation
journal, November 2013

  • Eastwood, David S.; Yufit, Vladimir; Gelb, Jeff
  • Advanced Energy Materials, Vol. 4, Issue 4
  • DOI: 10.1002/aenm.201300506

Progress in material selection for solid oxide fuel cell technology: A review
journal, July 2015


Poisoning of SOFC anodes by various fuel impurities
journal, September 2008


Towards High Performance Digital Volume Correlation
journal, December 2010


Identifying the Cause of Rupture of Li-Ion Batteries during Thermal Runaway
journal, October 2017

  • Finegan, Donal P.; Darcy, Eric; Keyser, Matthew
  • Advanced Science, Vol. 5, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1002/advs.201700369

Thermally Driven SOFC Degradation in 4D: Part I. Microscale
journal, January 2018

  • Heenan, T. M. M.; Lu, X.; Iacoviello, F.
  • Journal of The Electrochemical Society, Vol. 165, Issue 11
  • DOI: 10.1149/2.0151811jes

Thermally Driven SOFC Degradation in 4D: Part II. Macroscale
journal, January 2018

  • Heenan, T. M. M.; Lu, X.; Robinson, J. B.
  • Journal of The Electrochemical Society, Vol. 165, Issue 11
  • DOI: 10.1149/2.0061811jes

Fundamental mechanisms involved in the degradation of nickel–yttria stabilized zirconia (Ni–YSZ) anode during solid oxide fuel cells operation: A review
journal, January 2016


Three-dimensional reconstruction of a solid-oxide fuel-cell anode
journal, June 2006

  • Wilson, James R.; Kobsiriphat, Worawarit; Mendoza, Roberto
  • Nature Materials, Vol. 5, Issue 7
  • DOI: 10.1038/nmat1668

Properties and development of Ni/YSZ as an anode material in solid oxide fuel cell: A review
journal, August 2014

  • Shri Prakash, B.; Senthil Kumar, S.; Aruna, S. T.
  • Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Vol. 36
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.rser.2014.04.043

TomoWarp2: A local digital volume correlation code
journal, January 2017


Understanding the thermo-mechanical behaviour of solid oxide fuel cell anodes using synchrotron X-ray diffraction
journal, January 2018


Investigating the effect of thermal gradients on stress in solid oxide fuel cell anodes using combined synchrotron radiation and thermal imaging
journal, August 2015


Application of solid oxide fuel cell technology for power generation—A review
journal, April 2013


Three-Dimensional Microstructural Imaging of Sulfur Poisoning-Induced Degradation in a Ni-YSZ Anode of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells
journal, June 2014

  • Harris, William M.; Lombardo, Jeffrey J.; Nelson, George J.
  • Scientific Reports, Vol. 4, Issue 1
  • DOI: 10.1038/srep05246

Three-Phase Segmentation of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Anode Materials Using Lab Based X-ray Nano-Computed Tomography
journal, February 2017


NIH Image to ImageJ: 25 years of image analysis
journal, June 2012

  • Schneider, Caroline A.; Rasband, Wayne S.; Eliceiri, Kevin W.
  • Nature Methods, Vol. 9, Issue 7
  • DOI: 10.1038/nmeth.2089

Degradation of nickel–yttria-stabilized zirconia anode in solid oxide fuel cells under changing temperature and humidity conditions
journal, September 2014


Stress analysis of solid oxide fuel cell anode microstructure reconstructed from focused ion beam tomography
journal, November 2011


Chemical durability of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: Influence of impurities on long-term performance
journal, November 2011


    Figures/Tables have been extracted from DOE-funded journal article accepted manuscripts.