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Fabrication, phase transformation studies and characterization of SiC-AlN-Al sub 2 OC ceramics

Description: SiC and AlN are two of the important high temperature structural ceramics. AlN and the 2H polytype of SiC are isostructural. Prior work has shown that they form an extension solid solution at temperatures {ge} 2000{degrees}C. At lower temperatures, the solid solution can undergo phase separation. Additionally, Al{sub 2}OC is also isostructural and can form extensive solid solutions with SiC and AlN. The formation of solid solutions in such refractory materials as well as the tendency to undergo diffusional phase transformations suggests that a potential exists to improve properties through alloying. The principal objective of the proposed work is to examine phase relations, phase transformations, the resulting precipitate morphologies and their influence on mechanical properties of SiC-AlN-Al{sub 2}OC ceramics. Formation of modulated structures have been documented in SiC-AlN ceramics in our work. It has been shown that modulations occur along directions other than the (0001) direction and this results in the formation of a tweed type of a microstructure. In the AlN-Al{sub 2}OC system, the occurrence of cellular precipitates as well as coherent, disc-shaped precipitates has been observed. During the past year, work has progressed in the following areas: (1) Phase separation in SiC-AlN system: The effect of coherency strain energy on the precipitate morphology. (2) High temperature creep of SiC-AlN ceramics containing modulated structures and SiC-Al{sub 2}OC ceramics. (3) Fabrication and characterization of damage-resistant SiC-AlN ceramics. Three manuscripts have been submitted for publication.
Date: January 12, 1992
Creator: Virkar, A.V.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The effect of pressure on solid oxide fuel cell performance

Description: Current work in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) is on cathode-supported, anode-supported, or electrolyte-supported cells. In electrode-supported cells, a thin film (5 to 30 microns) of an electrolyte (YSZ) is deposited on a relatively thick, porous electrode. In electrolyte-supported cells, the electrolyte thickness is typically greater than or equal 150 microns upon which thin electrodes are screen printed. Both types of SOFCs are being explored for hybrid applications, that is, in combination with a gas turbine, for which the exit gases from an SOFC generator must be at a high pressure (3 to 15 atm) for input into a gas turbine. It is necessary to examine the expected performance of an SOFC under a high pressure. Work at Westinghouse Ontario Hydro has shown that the performance improvement at high pressures is greater than that can be expected based on an increased Nernst potential alone. This increased performance can in part be attributed to a lower concentration polarization. The objective of this work was to conduct a preliminary analysis of the effect of pressure on the performance of both cathode-supported and electrolyte-supported cells. Flux equations for transport through porous electrodes are formulated and are solved in combination with those for electrochemical operation of an SOFC for cathode-supported and electrolyte-supported cells. The analysis shows that the overall cell performance increases significantly with increasing pressure in the case of cathode-supported cells due to a lowering of concentration polarization at high pressures. Similar effects (not presented here) are also observed on anode-supported cells. By contrast, only a modest improvement is observed in the case of electrolyte-supported cells, commensurate with the fact that in the latter, the ohmic contribution of the electrolyte is the most dominant one, which is not altered by pressure.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Virkar, A.V.; Fung, K.Z. & Singhal, S.C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Idaho National Laboratory (INL) is performing high-temperature electrolysis research to generate hydrogen using solid oxide electrolysis cells (SOECs). The project goals are to address the technical and degradation issues associated with the SOECs. This paper provides a summary of various ongoing INL and INL sponsored activities aimed at addressing SOEC degradation. These activities include stack testing, post-test examination, degradation modeling, and a list of issues that need to be addressed in future. Major degradation issues relating to solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) are relatively better understood than those for SOECs. Some of the degradation mechanisms in SOFCs include contact problems between adjacent cell components, microstructural deterioration (coarsening) of the porous electrodes, and blocking of the reaction sites within the electrodes. Contact problems include delamination of an electrode from the electrolyte, growth of a poorly (electronically) conducting oxide layer between the metallic interconnect plates and the electrodes, and lack of contact between the interconnect and the electrode. INL’s test results on high temperature electrolysis (HTE) using solid oxide cells do not provide a clear evidence whether different events lead to similar or drastically different electrochemical degradation mechanisms. Post-test examination of the solid oxide electrolysis cells showed that the hydrogen electrode and interconnect get partially oxidized and become non-conductive. This is most likely caused by the hydrogen stream composition and flow rate during cool down. The oxygen electrode side of the stacks seemed to be responsible for the observed degradation due to large areas of electrode delamination. Based on the oxygen electrode appearance, the degradation of these stacks was largely controlled by the oxygen electrode delamination rate. University of Utah (Virkar) has developed a SOEC model based on concepts in local thermodynamic equilibrium in systems otherwise in global thermodynamic non-equilibrium. This model is under continued development. It shows that electronic conduction through ...
Date: June 1, 2010
Creator: O'Brien, J. E.; Stoots, C. M.; Sharma, V. I.; Yildiz, B. & Virkar, A. V.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department