Method and apparatus for producing a membrane-electrode assembly for a fuel cell

A membrane electrode group and fuel cell technology, which is applied to fuel cell components, fuel cells, sealing/supporting devices, etc., and can solve problems such as the difficulty in realizing the connection of components of the membrane electrode group

Active Publication Date: 2018-03-27
燃料电池中心两合股份有限公司
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AI-Extracted Technical Summary

Problems solved by technology

[0005] The disadvantage of the above solution is that it is difficult ...
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Method used

[0055] In a further step, at least one of the surfaces of the frame material 18 is processed 52 in order to improve the adhesion by means of the adhesive 42.
[0056] The frame material 18 is pretreated by processing 52 for application of the adhesive 42. The frame material 18 can here be machined over its entire surface or only in sections. The machining 52 of the entire surface is particularly simple, since no specific regio...
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Abstract

The invention relates to a method for producing a membrane-electrode assembly (12) for a fuel cell, in which at least one first component (18) of the membrane-electrode assembly (12) is provided as part of a continuous material web, which passes through a plurality of processing stations. At least one second component (26) of the membrane electrode arrangement is connected to the at least one first component. At least one adhesive is applied to at least one of the components (18, 26), which adhesive produces the bonding of the at least one first component (18) to the at least one second component (26). The invention further relates to an apparatus (10) for producing a membrane electrode arrangement (12).

Application Domain

Sealing/support means

Technology Topic

AdhesiveEngineering +4

Image

  • Method and apparatus for producing a membrane-electrode assembly for a fuel cell
  • Method and apparatus for producing a membrane-electrode assembly for a fuel cell
  • Method and apparatus for producing a membrane-electrode assembly for a fuel cell

Examples

  • Experimental program(1)

Example Embodiment

[0048] figure 1 The device 10 is shown in a greatly simplified manner, which is used to manufacture a membrane electrode assembly 12 with a frame 14 in a continuous manufacturing method. A printing method can be used here, or alternatively another roll processing method can be used. Here, a continuous web material is unrolled from the roller 16, and the frame material 18 of the membrane electrode group 12 is provided by the web material in the present invention. Accordingly, the frame 14 is constituted by the frame material 18 in the finished membrane electrode group 12. The web material is conveyed through the device 10 in one conveying direction or feeding direction. For example, a synthetic material unrolled from the roller 16 can be used as the frame material 18.
[0049] figure 1 Each processing station passed through in the manufacture of the membrane electrode assembly 12 is shown. in figure 1 These processing stations are shown schematically only by more arrows pointing to the web material of the frame material 18. A region 24 is punched out of the frame material 18 at the processing station 22. This area 24 is covered in the finished membrane electrode assembly 12 by a membrane 26 which is preferably constructed as a catalyst-coated membrane (CCM). The adhesive 42 (see image 3 ) Is printed on the frame material 18 by, for example, a screen printing method or such a rotating process. In another processing station, the membrane 26 is applied 30 to the still wet adhesive bed.
[0050] At other processing stations 32 and 34, the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 and the anode gas diffusion layer 38 are added to the process and connected with the frame material 18. Finally, a part surrounding the frame 14 is punched out 40 from the frame material 18 at another processing station, thereby providing the membrane electrode assembly 12 equipped with the frame 14.
[0051] A pre-set speed of, for example, 10 meters per minute allows web-type goods in the form of frame material 18 to move through the device 10. The device 10 is here exemplarily constructed like a printing press, in particular a roller printing press. As an alternative, any device suitable for continuous processing of web goods can be used. That is, the frame material 18 is provided piece by piece or equipped with other components of the membrane electrode group 12 to be manufactured. For this purpose, a printable adhesive 42 is used, which is also used as a sealing material for the membrane electrode assembly 12 in subsequent functions (see image 3 with Figure 4 ). The adhesive 42 here connects the frame material 18 to the diaphragm 26, the diaphragm 26 to the cathode gas diffusion layer 36, and the frame material 18 to the anode gas diffusion layer 38 (see Figure 4 ). As Figure 4 As an alternative to the layout shown, the anode gas diffusion layer 38 and the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 may be inverted or exchanged.
[0052] Combine figure 1 It can be particularly clearly seen that for the processing steps that take place at different processing stations, in particular, a rotating process can be used. In addition, the separation processing step, the coating processing step, and the joining processing step are carried out in separate processing stations.
[0053] First unfold 44 the frame material 18 from the roller 16 (see figure 2 ). Here, the unfolding 44 can be carried out in a chain-controlled manner, for example, by using a gear that cooperates with a corresponding toothed belt or the like. In order to achieve a certain tensile stress acting on the frame material 18, a braking device may be provided, which brakes the frame material 18 in a manner opposite to the direction of movement. In addition, the frame material 18 can be connected to the load-bearing web 46 (see image 3 with Figure 4 ) And the corresponding movement of the bearing web 46 to realize the unfolding of the frame material 18 from the roller 16.
[0054] In order to move the frame material 18 through the device 10 along a predetermined path, in particular, edge adjustment may be used. Here, for example, the edge alignment of the frame material 18 can be monitored during the passage through the device 10 with the aid of an ultrasonic sensor, and a corresponding readjustment can be made. In addition, such as figure 1 As shown, a driven roller in the form of, for example, a steering roller 48 can be used for web guidance. In addition, the driven roller 50 can realize the correct web guiding of the frame material 18. A roller for non-contact guiding of the frame material 18 may also be provided, which releases compressed air and thereby provides an air cushion on which the frame material 18 moves through the device 10. The above solution is particularly meaningful when it is necessary to avoid contact between such a roller and the components of the membrane electrode assembly 12 coated with the adhesive 42.
[0055] In another step, at least one of the surfaces of the frame material 18 is processed 52 to improve adhesion by means of the adhesive 42.
[0056] The frame material 18 is pretreated by processing 52 to apply adhesive 42. In this case, the frame material 18 can be processed over the entire surface or only partially. The processing 52 of the entire surface is particularly simple, because there is no need to specifically process a specific area of ​​the frame material 18. In terms of the materials used for processing 52 or the energy used for processing 52, local processing 52 is particularly economical. In addition, in the case where the surface of the frame material 18 is only partially activated, it is possible to prevent the frame material 18 from being accidentally damaged at a position not suitable for applying the adhesive 42.
[0057] In another step, the area 24 designed for the diaphragm 26 is separated 54 from the frame material 18. In this cutting operation, for example, a laser, a rotary cutting drum, or a hob combined with a flying knife can be used, which cuts the frame material 18 in the moving direction or conveying direction of the web. It is also possible to separate the area 24 from the frame material 18 by means of a water jet or a tool to which an ultrasonic frequency is applied.
[0058] In the next step, the adhesive 42 is applied 56 to the frame material 18. A printing method is preferably used here, which is used to coat the frame material 18 with the adhesive 42 on the entire surface or partially. in figure 2 In the device 10 shown as a roll printing machine, for example, relief printing, gravure printing or stencil printing, especially screen printing, can be used. As an additional or alternative solution, the adhesive 42 may be applied to the frame material 18 by means of a digital printing method or a spray printing method.
[0059] In the next step, the adhesive material is pre-activated 58. Here, the adhesive 42 may be pre-activated by means of a UV lamp 60, so that the first crosslinking reaction occurs in the adhesive 42. Therefore, the viscosity of the adhesive 42 can be adjusted such that although the adhesive 42 no longer stretches, it still has the desired characteristics for connecting the frame material 18 and the diaphragm 26.
[0060] In the next step, the membrane 26 is applied 62 to the frame material 18 coated with the adhesive 42. At another processing station 64, the diaphragm 26 and the frame material 18 are joined. Here, the pressing plate 66 can apply a corresponding pressure to the frame material 18 provided with the diaphragm 26. This joining step may be separate, in particular, during the pressing of the pressing plate 66, the frame material 18 does not move further. As an alternative, pressure can also be applied continuously, for example, the pressure plate 66 moves together with the frame material 18. It is also possible to apply the pressure continuously or periodically at a certain frequency, especially at an ultrasonic frequency. In addition, ultrasound can be used as an aid during the joining process. As other joining methods, thermal lamination and/or welding can be used.
[0061] In the present invention, the adhesive 42 is also cured 68 in the area of ​​the processing station 64. To this end, another UV lamp 70 can, for example, apply corresponding UV radiation to the adhesive 42. As an additional or alternative solution, the infrared lamp 72 can initiate curing or activation of the adhesive 42 by infrared radiation. Heat can also be applied to the adhesive 42 in other forms.
[0062] UV radiation, infrared radiation and/or heat may be applied to the adhesive 42 locally or uniformly over the entire surface of the membrane electrode group 12 to be manufactured. By locally activating the adhesive 42, for example, it is possible to prevent the regions of the diaphragm 26 that are sensitive to corresponding radiation or heat from being damaged. In addition, as far as the electromagnetic radiation is preferably applied to the adhesive 42, the wavelength of the electromagnetic radiation can be adjusted in terms of spectrum such that these radiations enter the adhesive 42 to different degrees. In this way, a particularly uniform activation or curing of the adhesive 42 can be achieved over the entire thickness range. In addition, the adhesive 42 can be activated by means of ultrasound and/or by means of an electron beam.
[0063] The adhesive 42 may be activated continuously or in a pulsed manner. In the case of discontinuous application of radiation, ultrasonic waves and/or electron beams to the adhesive 42, advantages in terms of energy consumption of the device 10 can be achieved.
[0064] In a variant of the device 10, it is also possible to use a two-component adhesive as the adhesive 42, which begins to cure when the two components are brought together. This eliminates the need to provide a radiation source or the like for curing the adhesive 42. A thermosetting adhesive 42 and/or a solvent-containing adhesive 42 may also be used.
[0065] In the next step 74, the diaphragm 26 can be trimmed and, for example, the protruding edge area removed (see figure 1 ). The adhesive 42 is then applied 78 (preferably locally) to the frame material 18 connected to the diaphragm 26 at the processing station.
[0066] The adhesive 42 is also applied to the frame material 18 in step 82. After the application operation 78 or step 82, pre-activation 84, 86 can be performed by means of a UV lamp 61, respectively.
[0067] Such as figure 1 As shown, the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 can be provided by a corresponding continuous web-like material unrolled from another roller 76. Similarly, it is preferable that the anode gas diffusion layer 38 is also provided as a continuous web material wound on another roller 80. At the next processing station, the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 or the anode gas diffusion layer 38 is cut 88 from the corresponding web material respectively.
[0068] In another step 90, the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 and the anode gas diffusion layer 38 are applied to the frame material 18 or the diaphragm 26 from opposite sides. The curing of the adhesive 42 can subsequently be achieved, in particular by heating with an infrared lamp 92 and/or in one of the aforementioned ways, which initiates the connection of the gas diffusion layers 36, 38 with the remaining components of the membrane electrode assembly 12. Finally, the finished component, the membrane electrode group 12, is separated 40 from the frame material 18 in another step.
[0069] Even in the coating or application operation of the web material (which is coated with the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 and the anode gas diffusion layer 38), the aforementioned method can also be used. In particular, the adhesive 42 can also be applied over the entire surface or partially.
[0070] figure 2 Another method of manufacturing a membrane electrode assembly 12 is shown, which can be performed by means of a continuously working device 10. Here, in the first step, the supporting web 46 used as an auxiliary carrier is unrolled from the other roller 94. in figure 2 In the step shown by circle 96, the carrier web 46 is surface-treated on one side (in alternative embodiments, on both sides), and then another adhesive is printed on it. in figure 2 The corresponding printing operation 98 is shown by another circle in. The adhesive used here may particularly be different from the adhesive 42 used to connect the components of the membrane electrode assembly 12. In the present invention, in the fabricated membrane electrode assembly 12 punched out from the frame material 18, the supporting web 46 used as an auxiliary carrier is no longer connected to the frame material 18.
[0071] The frame material 18 is unrolled from the roller 16, and edge adjustment and one side (or both sides) surface treatment are performed on it. The corresponding circle 100 shows these processing steps. In addition, it is preferable to print a reference point or a registration mark to the frame material 18. figure 2 The corresponding printing operation 102 is also shown. In the curing operation 104, these registration marks are cured. The registration mark is particularly used to adjust the application position of components that need to be connected to the frame material 18 or other components of the membrane electrode assembly 12 in the subsequent processing steps.
[0072] In the joining operation 106, the carrier web 46 is joined to the frame material 18, wherein the frame material 18 is positioned above the carrier web 46 here. The adhesive previously applied to the carrier web 46 during the printing operation 98 ensures the adhesion between the carrier web 46 and the frame material 18. In the curing step 108, the adhesive is cured. In the present invention, the composite body including the frame material 18 and the bearing web 46 is referred to as the basic web 110 (see image 3 ). In the cutting operation 112, the frame material 18 is cut from the basic web 110 from above in the next step. However, the carrier web 46 is not cut open here. image 3 The corresponding position 114 of the basic web 110 is shown in a greatly simplified manner, in which position the frame material 18 is cut and the load-bearing web 46 remains joined.
[0073] In the next step, an adhesive 42 is printed for the frame material 18 from above. Figure 4 The corresponding printing operation is shown by another circle 116. As an alternative, the printing operation 116 may also be performed before the cutting operation 112. The adhesive 42 is then activated 118. In the next step, the film 26 is unrolled from the corresponding roller 120. In another cutting operation 122, the film 26 is cut and laid on the basic web 110 from above. figure 2 The corresponding engagement operation 124 is shown by another circle.
[0074] Adhesive 42 is then printed for film 26, where figure 2 The corresponding printing operation 128 is shown by another circle. In the next step 130, the adhesive 42 is activated. Subsequently, the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 is unrolled from another roller 126, and the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 is cut 132 and laid 134 to the diaphragm 26 from above. image 3 The corresponding processing steps of connecting the cathode gas diffusion layer 36 and the diaphragm 26 through the adhesive 42 are shown.
[0075] From image 3 In particular, it can be seen that the adhesive 42 connecting the membrane 26 and the gas diffusion layer 36 and the adhesive 42 connecting the frame material 18 and the membrane 26 realize an airtight lateral encapsulation of the membrane 26. The adhesive 42 preferably surrounds each side 136 or narrow side of the diaphragm 26. From image 3 It can also be seen that at this point in time, the carrying width 46 is still intact.
[0076] In the next cutting step 138 (see figure 2 ), the basic format 110 is cut from below. However, only the supporting web 46 is cut here. image 3 The location 140 where the cutting operation 138 occurs is shown. The middle part of the carrier thus produced (ie, the supporting web 46) is separated from the previous (in the cutting operation 112) of the frame material 18 and the area connected with the supporting web 46 by the adhesive 42 is peeled downward as a waste material 142.
[0077] In this way, the diaphragm 26 or the frame material 18 can be accessed from the bottom side. Accordingly, the adhesive 42 is printed for it in the next step. figure 2 The corresponding printing operation 146 is shown by another circle. Following this printing operation 146, the adhesive 42 is reactivated 148. Subsequently, the second anode gas diffusion layer 38 is unrolled from the other roller 144. Subsequently, the area for the membrane electrode group 12 is cut from the web material provided in the roller 144, which is used to form the gas diffusion layer 38 of the membrane electrode group 12. in figure 2 The corresponding cutting operation 150 is shown in another circle.
[0078] In another joining operation 152, the cut gas diffusion layer 38 is pressed from below to the now exposed diaphragm 26. Here, the adhesive 42 realizes the connection between the gas diffusion layer 38 and the frame material 18 (see Figure 4 ). However, in this area, the adhesive 42 does not need to provide a sealing function, but only realizes the bonding of the frame material 18 and the cathode gas diffusion layer 38.
[0079] In another cutting operation 154, the basic web 110 is cut in the area of ​​the frame material 18. This produces a finished membrane electrode assembly 12 with a frame 14 (see figure 1 ). In another step, the rest of the basic format 110 is removed as waste 156 facing upwards (see figure 2 ).

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