Advanced analytical electron microscopy applied to Solid Oxide Fuel Cell materials and their degradation

The aim of this PhD thesis is to improve our understanding of the degradation of solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) components which are subject to extreme conditions. In order to reach this goal, an experimental method to characterize the first hours of ageing of several SOFC components has to be defined, using advanced electron microscope methods and mixing in-situ observation and post-test analyses. Three components are under focus:
– the ceramic composite anode (nickel – Yttrium stabilized zirconium)
– the steel interconnect and its coating (cobalt cerium coating on Sandvik Sanergy High-Temperature steel)
– the glass-ceramic seals (Barium base glass ceramic seals from Schott)

PhD student (LSME/GEM): Stephane Poitel

Advisors: Prof. Cécile Hébert and Dr Jan Van Herle