Effect of Surface Silanol Density on the Proton Conductivity of Polymer-Surface-Functionalized Silica Nanoparticles

Kazuki Koseki, Toshihiko Arita, Keisuke Tabata, Tomohiro Nohara, Ryota Sato, Shusaku Nagano, Akito Masuhara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We have developed a polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) material using polymer-coated silica nanoparticles (NPs) by the reversible addition-fragmentation chain-transfer polymerization with particles (RAFT PwP) method. In this paper, we controlled the number density of surface silanol groups on the silica NPs that not only maintain the structure of the surface adsorbed polymers by RAFT PwP but also form fast proton-conducting interface to study the silanol density effect on proton conductivity. The number of surface silanol groups was successfully increased by NaOH surface treatment and decreased by heat treatment. Then, we clarified that silanol-rich silica NPs with a polyacrylic acid and polystyrene block copolymer (PAA-b-PS) applied by RAFT PwP exhibit larger proton conductivity. This result implies that hydrophilicity of the filler is one of the important factors in the design of filler-functionalized PEM with high proton conductivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10093-10099
Number of pages7
JournalACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering
Volume9
Issue number30
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Aug 2

Keywords

  • polymer electrolyte fuel cell
  • proton conductivity
  • RAFT polymerization
  • silica nanoparticle
  • surface silanol group

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment

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