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Operando magnetic resonance imaging for mapping of temperature and redox species in thermo-electrochemical cells
journal contributionposted on 2021-01-01, 00:00 authored by I E Gunathilaka, Jenny PringleJenny Pringle, L A O’Dell
AbstractLow-grade waste heat is an abundant and underutilised energy source. In this context, thermo-electrochemical cells (i.e., systems able to harvest heat to generate electricity) are being intensively studied to deliver the promises of efficient and cost-effective energy harvesting and electricity generation. However, despite the advances in performance disclosed in recent years, understanding the internal processes occurring within these devices is challenging. In order to shed light on these mechanisms, here we report an operando magnetic resonance imaging approach that can provide quantitative spatial maps of the electrolyte temperature and redox ion concentrations in functioning thermo-electrochemical cells. Time-resolved images are obtained from liquid and gel electrolytes, allowing the observation of the effects of redox reactions and competing mass transfer processes such as thermophoresis and diffusion. We also correlate the physicochemical properties of the system with the device performance via simultaneous electrochemical measurements.