Estimation of the membrane methanol diffusion coefficient from open circuit voltage measurements in a direct methanol fuel cell

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Direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) are attractive for several applications, however, at present, methanol crossover from the anode to the cathode appears to be a major limitation. For this reason, as one of the alternatives, membrane technology tries to obtain new methanol-impermeable polymer electrolytes. In this sense, it would be interesting to develop easy methods to check the new materials in relation to the methanol transport. In this work, a simple model is presented which permits to estimate easily the methanol diffusion coefficient of the membrane of a DMFC from open circuit voltage (OCV) measurements. The model has been checked in a DMFC using Nafion membranes as electrolyte.
�© 2002 Elsevier. V.M.B. wishes to thank the Ministry of Education and Culture of Spain for FPU granting and also the staff of the Fraunhofer Institut für Solar Energiesysteme for their kind support during her stay here
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