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Limiting Current Density of Oxygen Reduction under Ultrathin Electrolyte Layers: From the Micrometer Range to Monolayers

MPS-Authors
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Schulz,  Matthias
Corrosion, Interface Chemistry and Surface Engineering, Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung GmbH, Max Planck Society;

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Wu,  Chun-Hung
Corrosion, Interface Chemistry and Surface Engineering, Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung GmbH, Max Planck Society;

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Rabe,  Martin
Interface Spectroscopy, Interface Chemistry and Surface Engineering, Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung GmbH, Max Planck Society;

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Rohwerder,  Michael
Corrosion, Interface Chemistry and Surface Engineering, Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung GmbH, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Zhong, X., Schulz, M., Wu, C.-H., Rabe, M., Erbe, A., & Rohwerder, M. (2021). Limiting Current Density of Oxygen Reduction under Ultrathin Electrolyte Layers: From the Micrometer Range to Monolayers. ChemElectroChem, 8(4), 712-718. doi:10.1002/celc.202100083.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0008-1992-7
Abstract
The oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) under ultrathin electrolyte layers is a key reaction in many processes, from atmospheric corrosion to energy conversion in fuel cells. However, the ORR current under ultrathin electrolyte layers is difficult to measure using conventional electrochemical methods. Hence, reliable data are scarce for the micrometer range and totally missing for the sub-micrometer range of the electrolyte layer thickness. Here, we report a novel hydrogen-permeation-based approach to measure the ORR current underneath thin and ultrathin electrolyte layers. By using a Kelvin-probe-based measurement of the potential, which results from dynamic equilibrium of oxygen reduction and hydrogen oxidation, and the corresponding hydrogen charging current density, the full current-potential relationship can be constructed. The results shed a new light on the nature of the limiting current density of ORR underneath ultrathin layers of electrolyte. © 2021 The Authors. ChemElectroChem published by Wiley-VCH GmbH