Effects of operating conditions of a high-temperature polymer electrolyte water electrolyzer (HT-PEWE) on the electrolysis voltage are evaluated, and the optimal conditions for a high performance are revealed. A HT-PEWE unit cell with a 4-cm2 electrode consisting of Nafion117-based catalyst-coated membrane with IrO2 and Pt/C as the oxygen and hydrogen evolution catalysts is fabricated, and its electrolysis voltage and high-frequency resistance are assessed. The cell temperature and pressure are controlled at 80-130 °C and 0.1-0.5 MPa, respectively. It is observed that increasing the temperature at a constant pressure of 0.1 MPa does not increase the ohmic overvoltage of the cell; however, it does increase the concentration overvoltage. It is also found that the increase in the overvoltage resulting from the rise in the temperature can be suppressed by elevating the pressure. When operating the cell at a temperature of 100 °C, pressure greater than 0.1 MPa suppresses the overvoltage, and so does pressures greater than 0.3 MPa at 130 °C. This behavior suggests that keeping the water in a liquid water phase by increasing the pressure is critical for operating PEWEs at high temperatures.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering