Testing of Electrodes, Cells and Short Stacks

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The present contribution describes the electrochemical testing and characterization of electrodes, cells, and short stacks. To achieve the maximum insight and results from testing of electrodes and cells, it is obviously necessary to have a good understanding of the fundamental principles of electrochemistry, but it also requires proper test geometries and set up, well-chosen operating conditions for
different test purposes, correct probing of voltages and temperatures, and solid knowledge on benefits and drawbacks of different characterization techniques to obtain reliable, accurate, and reproducible electrochemical measurements, and this will be the focus of this chapter. First, the important issue of understanding potential differences and measurements of potentials, which is linked to the choice of proper electrode geometries and test set up configurations for electrode and cell testing, is presented. Then probing of voltages and temperatures, choice of sealing and contacting, as well as considerations regarding the choice of operating conditions for different purposes mainly for single cell testing are outlined. Having considered optimization of test set up, geometries, and the selection of optimal operating conditions, the details of measurement of the electrochemical performance of the electrode, cell, or stack are explained. As part of this, the concept of area specific resistance (ASR) and how DC and AC methods can be used and optimized to provide not only the total ASR, but also the electrochemical characterization of specific parts (electrolyte, each electrode) in a full cell are described. Some experimental results are provided including illustrative examples of breakdown of losses in full cells and determination of their temperature and gas composition dependencies, and finally, challenging issues, such as the effects of impurities and the problem of leakage in cell testing, are discussed as well.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Medium and High Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Technology
EditorsMarta Boaro, Aricò Antonino Salvatore
Publication date2017
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-46145-8
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-46146-5
Publication statusPublished - 2017
SeriesInternational Centre for Mechanical Sciences. Courses and Lectures


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