Integrated Membrane-Electrode-Assembly Photoelectrochemical Cell (PEC) under Various Feed Conditions for Solar Water Splitting

Kistler, T., Larson, D., Walczack, K., Agbo, P., Sharp, I., Weber, A., Danilovic, N. Integrated Membrane-Electrode-Assembly Photoelectrochemical Cell under Various Feed Conditions for Solar Water Splitting. J. Electrochem. Soc., 166(5), H3020-H3028, DOI: 10.1149/2.0041905jes (2018)


Scientific Achievement

Designed, characterized and optimized a PEC cell for water splitting operation using water vapor

Significance & impact

Demonstrated a stable solar to H2 efficiency of 6% for over 160 hours under steady state and diurnal cycling, with a peak efficiency of 12%

Research Details

  • •Patented cell design that allows for flexibility in components and functionality

    •Durability affected by permeation and mass transport of water in perfluorosulfonic acid polymer electrolyte

    •Vapor phase operation increased durability compared with liquid operation

    •Barrier layers help protect photoactive materials and extend durability

Contact: azweber@lbl.gov

Read More Research Highlights

Reprinted from Kistler, T., Larson, D., Walczack, K., Agbo, P., Sharp, I., Weber, A., Danilovic, N. Integrated Membrane-Electrode-Assembly Photoelectrochemical Cell under Various Feed Conditions for Solar Water Splitting. J. Electrochem. Soc., 166(5), H3020-H3028,  DOI: 10.1149/2.0041905jes  (2018)   Vapor (liquid) PEC test bed in two different configurations: a) PV sitting in the cathode compartment (photocathode); b) PV  sitting in the anode compartment (photoanode).

Reprinted from Kistler, T., Larson, D., Walczack, K., Agbo, P., Sharp, I., Weber, A., Danilovic, N. Integrated Membrane-Electrode-Assembly Photoelectrochemical Cell under Various Feed Conditions for Solar Water Splitting. J. Electrochem. Soc., 166(5), H3020-H3028, DOI: 10.1149/2.0041905jes (2018)

Vapor (liquid) PEC test bed in two different configurations: a) PV sitting in the cathode compartment (photocathode); b) PV sitting in the anode compartment (photoanode).

Reprinted from Kistler, T., Larson, D., Walczack, K., Agbo, P., Sharp, I., Weber, A., Danilovic, N. Integrated Membrane-Electrode-Assembly Photoelectrochemical Cell under Various Feed Conditions for Solar Water Splitting. J. Electrochem. Soc., 166(5), H3020-H3028,  DOI: 10.1149/2.0041905jes  (2018)   Cell operation with vapor feed and a barrier layer. (a) First 100 hours  of durability test with anode vapor feed only, STH efficiency plotted as a function of time  shows durable performance with fluctuations due to hydration/dehydration  cycles of the membrane. (b) Diurnal cycling  performed with dual vapor feed after 122 hours of steady state testing  at 1 sun. The STH output was largely not affected during the  cycles which indicated the durability of the cell.

Reprinted from Kistler, T., Larson, D., Walczack, K., Agbo, P., Sharp, I., Weber, A., Danilovic, N. Integrated Membrane-Electrode-Assembly Photoelectrochemical Cell under Various Feed Conditions for Solar Water Splitting. J. Electrochem. Soc., 166(5), H3020-H3028, DOI: 10.1149/2.0041905jes (2018)

Cell operation with vapor feed and a barrier layer. (a) First 100 hours of durability test with anode vapor feed only, STH efficiency plotted as a function of time shows durable performance with fluctuations due to hydration/dehydration cycles of the membrane. (b) Diurnal cycling performed with dual vapor feed after 122 hours of steady state testing at 1 sun. The STH output was largely not affected during the cycles which indicated the durability of the cell.