Durability of Solid Oxide Cells: an experimental and modelling investigation based on synchrotron X-ray nano-tomography characterization

PhD Defense
Start Date
24-05-2017 14:00
End Date
24-05-2017 16:00
Maison MINATEC – Salle Chrome 1 - Phelma INP / Minatec - 3 Parvis Louis Néel - 38000 Grenoble
Speaker's name
Maxime Hubert
Speaker's institute
Univ. Grenoble Alpes – CEA/LITEN, 38054, Grenoble, France European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF), 38000, Grenoble, France
Contact name
Valérie Bergerioux
Host name
Peter Cloetens
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This work aims at better understanding and quantifying the degradation 
of high temperature Solid Oxide Cells. An approach based on 
electrochemical tests, advanced post-test characterizations and 
multi-scale models has been used to investigate the links between the 
performances, the electrodes microstructure and their degradation upon 
operation. In that goal, long-term durability tests have been performed 
over few 1000h in different operating conditions. Electrode 
microstructures have been reconstructed by synchrotron X-ray 
nano-holotomography for the pristine and aged cells. It is worth noting 
that a special attention has been paid to the improvement of both the 
protocol reliability for the tomographic experiments and the spatial 
resolution of the 3D reconstructed images. Thanks to the valuable 3D 
volumes, the Ni-YSZ microstructural properties of the H2 electrode have 
been quantified for the fresh and the aged samples. Then, a 
physically-based model for Nickel particle agglomeration has been 
adjusted on the microstructural parameters obtained by the 3D analysis 
and implemented in an in-house multi-scale modelling framework. 
Beforehand, it has been necessary to enrich the available numerical tool 
with a specific module dedicated to the oxygen electrode made in Mixed 
Ionic Electronic Conducting materials. Once validated on polarisation 
curves, the completed model has been used to quantify the contribution 
of Nickel agglomeration on the total experimental degradation rates 
(~30%) recorded in fuel cell and electrolysis modes.
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