TOPIC: Polymers for Electrochemical Energy
SPEAKER: Kelly M. Meek, PhD
DATE: Tuesday, January 18th
TIME: 6:00 – Introduction
6:15 - Presentation and Q&A
COST: Free, Registration Required
LOCATION: Online Zoom meeting
ABSTRACT: Globally, we are facing an imminent challenge to replace petroleum-based energy with renewable alternatives. Ion-conducting polymer membranes are of high interest for utilization as solid-state electrolytes within electrochemical energy technologies (e.g., fuel cells, electrolyzers, redox flow batteries). Relative to standard proton exchange membrane (PEM) devices, the alkaline environment of anion exchange membrane (AEM) corollaries offers the opportunity for lower cost catalysts and separator materials, as well as improved water management and reduced gas crossover. In this seminar, numerous AEMs are compared as hydroxide conducting solid-state electrolytes. Methods are established for high throughput, parallel characterization of AEM materials evaluating conductivity, ion exchange capacity, chemical stability, and water uptake, as well as true hydroxide-ion properties. Standardized comparisons of the top performing hydroxide conducting AEMs of different backbone types provides valuable insight into optimal membrane chemistries for achieving high conductivity and durability. Structure-property relationships and their effects on AEM performance will be presented.
SPEAKER BIO: Prof. Meek completed her BS in Chemical Engineering at the University of Arkansas in 2011. Next, she completed her PhD in Chemical Engineering at Texas A&M University in 2016, where she researched polymers for energy storage and conversion. She continued her research through postdoctoral fellowships at two US DOE labs: Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Prof. Meek joined the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Ottawa as a tenure-track Assistant Professor in July 2020.