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Micro and nano scale three-dimensional reconstruction of polymer electrolyte fuel cell porous layers

Ostadi-Valiabad, Hossein (2012)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Abstract

This PhD project is a step change towards the fluid flow prediction within the polymer electrolyte fuel cells through micro/nano characterisation of porous layers of the fuel cell. X-ray micro/nano tomography has been developed to reveal a three dimensional digital image of gas diffusion layers at micro/nano scale and focused ion beam/scanning electron microscope nanotomography technique was developed to visualize the three dimensional porous structure of the microporous layer and catalyst layer. Tomography images then were used to obtain morphological parameters of the layers and combined with well-known analytical models and numerical-simulations to anticipate the permeability, diffusivity and tortuousity of the layers. The project can be divided into two main sections. In the first section X-ray micro and nanotomography were used to characterise the uncompressed gas diffusion layers. In addition, the structural features of compressed gas diffusion layers were captured by using polydimethylsiloxane to encapsulate the compressed porous structure and by subsequently employing X-ray microtomography to reconstruct a digital three dimensional model. In the second section, focused ion beam/scanning electron microscope nanotomography was developed for the microporous layer and the catalyst layer. The techniques were successfully applied to other materials including glass micropipettes, metals, silicon, urine catheters and diatomaceous frustules.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Jiang, Kyle
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
Department:School of Mechanical Engineering
Subjects:TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:3318
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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