Enhanced performance of nanostructured thin film anode through Pt plasma enhanced atomic layer deposition for low temperature solid oxide fuel cells

Wonjong Yu1, Sanghoon Lee, Sangbong Ryu, Chunhua Zheng, Gu Young Cho#, Suk Won Cha#


Thin-film electrode deposited by sputtering has drawn attention due to high surface area and density of reaction sites for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cells. However, the nano-column structure of the sputtered film on the nanoporous anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) substrate has been showing low performances, possibly originated from low in-plane electrical connectivity and limited reaction area at electrolyte/electrode interface. We report here that application of 10 nm thickness of Pt plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition (PEALD) on the nanoporous Ni-based anode and Gd doped ceria (GDC) deposited by sputtering dramatically enhances anodic reactions, significantly reduces ohmic and polarization resistances (25% reduction in ohmic, 50% reduction in polarization resistances), and improves the power density over 60% compared to the bare cells. It is noteworthy that Pt PEALD deposited on the nanoporous GDC layer shows much-improved performance compared to that deposited on the nanoporous anode structure. This is attributed to the enhanced contact area at Pt/GDC interface by exceptional conformal deposition of Pt PEALD and improved reaction sites from surface of GDC anode interlayer.