Protocol for Evaluating Anion Exchange Membranes for Nonaqueous Redox Flow Batteries

30 April 2024, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


Nonaqueous redox flow batteries (NARFBs) often suffer from reduced battery lifetime and decreased coulombic effi-ciency due to crossover of the redox-active species through the membrane. One method to mitigate this undesired crossover is to judiciously choose a membrane based on several criteria: swelling and structural integrity, size and charge(s) of redox active species, and ionic conductivity. Most research to date has focused on reducing crossover by synthesizing modified redox-active molecules and/or new membranes. However, no standard protocol exists to com-pare membranes and a comprehensive study comparing membranes has yet to be done. To address both these limita-tions, we evaluate herein 26 commercial anion exchange membranes (AEMs) to assess their compatibility with com-mon nonaqueous solvents and their resistance to crossover by using neutral and cationic redox-active molecules. Ul-timately, we found that all the evaluated AEMs perform poorly in organic solvents due to uncontrolled swelling, low ionic conductivity, and/or high crossover rates. We believe that this method, and the generated data, will be useful to evaluate and compare the performance of all anion exchange membranes—commercial and newly synthesized—and should be implemented as a standard protocol for all future work.


redox flow battery

Supplementary materials

Supporting Information
All materials, synthetic and electrochemical procedures, struc-tural (NMR, MS, and elemental analysis) and electrochemical characterization (crossover, CV, EIS, batteries), solvent uptake and swelling studies, and photos of all AEMs in organic sol-vents are provided in the supporting information.


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