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.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- 化学 (全般)