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Title: Nanoporous Polytetrafluoroethylene/Silica Composite Separator as a High-Performance All-Vanadium Redox Flow Battery Membrane

Driven by the motivation of searching for low-cost membrane alternatives, a novel nanoporous polytetrafluoroethylene/silica composite separator has been prepared and evaluated for its use in all-vanadium mixed-acid redox flow battery. This separator consisting of silica particles enmeshed in a polytetrafluoroethylene fibril matrix has no ion exchange capacity and is featured with unique nanoporous structures, which function as the ion transport channels in redox flow battery operation, with an average pore size of 38nm and a porosity of 48%. This separator has produced excellent electrochemical performance in the all-vanadium mixed-acid system with energy efficiency delivery comparable to Nafion membrane and superior rate capability and temperature tolerance. The separator also demonstrates an exceptional capacity retention capability over extended cycling, offering additional operational latitude towards conveniently mitigating the capacity decay that is inevitable for Nafion. Because of the inexpensive raw materials and simple preparation protocol, the separator is particularly low-cost, estimated to be at least an order of magnitude more inexpensive than Nafion. Plus the proven chemical stability due to the same backbone material as Nafion, this separator possesses a good combination of critical membrane requirements and shows great potential to promote market penetration of the all-vanadium redox flow battery by enabling significantmore » reduction of capital and cycle costs.« less
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Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Advanced Energy Materials, 3(9):1215-1220
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
Polytetrafluoroethylene; silica particles; nanoporous separator; all-vanadium redox flow battery