Anion exchange membranes derived from poly(ionic liquid) of poly(bis-piperidinium) and polybenzimidazole blends

Beijia Zhao, Tingting Wang, Mikkel Rykær Kraglund, Jing Yang, Jianhao Dong, Ao Tang*, David Aili*, Jingshuai Yang*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Anion exchange membranes (AEMs) play a critical role in various environmentally friendly electrochemical energy conversion and storage devices such fuel cells, water electrolysis and flow batteries. Recently, AEMs based on ether-free ionomers or ionenes have attracted much attention due to their excellent alkaline stabilities, however normally suffering from multiple-step synthetic procedure, post-functionalization and the use of precious metal catalysts. In this study, we develop a facile method to synthesize bis-piperidinium main-chain poly(ionic liquid)s devoid of ether linkages through the nucleophilic reaction between a bis-piperidine monomer of 4,4′-trimethylene bis(1-methyl-piperidine) and various bifunctional alkyl or aryl bromides. Seven poly(ionic liquid)s of poly(bis-alkyl piperidinium) are subsequently blended with polybenzimidazole (PBI) to give mechanically robust and dimensionally stable AEMs. The membrane performances are readily adjusted by changing the chemical structure of poly(bis-alkyl piperidinium)s. The membrane based on the poly(bis-alkyl piperidinium) containing a flexible butylidene spacer chain achieves the highest Br- conductivity of 67 mS cm−1 at 80 °C, tensile strength of around 13 MPa at room temperature, and a superior alkaline stability in 1 mol/L KOH at 60 °C during 1250 h. DFT calculations further confirm the more excellent alkaline stability of the piperidinium cation with alkyl group than the one with benzyl group.
Original languageEnglish
Article number124775
JournalJournal of Molecular Liquids
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2024


  • Ether-free anion exchange membrane
  • Main-chian bis-piperidinium
  • Blending
  • Polybenzimidazole
  • Poly(ionic liquid)


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