Augmentation method of triple phase boundary in thin film solid oxide fuel cell via physical vapor deposition

Taehyun Park, Ikwhang Chang, Sukwon Cha

Triple phase boundaries (TPBs) where electrode, electrolyte, and reactant meet altogether were augmented in thin film solid oxide fuel cell when Pt cathode was deposited on yttrium-doped barium zirconate electrolyte (BZY) via sputter. The augmented TPBs were observed to exist as three-dimensional structures, which is different from what are known to exist as two-dimensional planes or interfaces, by using energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS). The permeating phenomenon of sputtered Pt into BZY was found to depend on dc sputtering power. Polarization curves showed increasing tendency of maximum powers in accordance with increasing thickness of Pt cathode and spectra of ac impedances showed decreasing tendency of faradaic resistances. If TPBs were located as an interfacial structure between electrode and electrolyte, oxygen could not diffuse well into TPBs, causing radius of semicircle in impedance spectra to decrease. The results are violating this expectation. As a result, as long as charge transfer resistance is a function of temperature, reactant concentration, activation barrier and TPB length, TPB must be only a factor to affect the results in this experiment.