Study of carbon dioxide electrolysis at electrode/electrolyte interface: Part I. Pt/YSZ interface

G. Tao, K. R. Sridhar, C. L. Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article

70 Scopus citations


CO2 electrolysis to produce O2 has been investigated at the Pt/YSZ interface by means of the solid oxide electrolysis in preparation for future human exploration of Mars. With the aid of the current interruption method, the activation overpotentials, which are free of ohmic losses, were measured in the temperature range from 1023 to 1123 K. Both the CO2 electrolysis performance curve and the activation overpotential curve show three distinct regions. Only impurity O2 is electrolyzed in regions I and II, which occur at an applied cell voltage well below the threshold value of the open circuit voltage for CO2 electrolysis, and the reaction is controlled by O2 gas diffusion on the cathode side. Active electrolysis of CO2 to form CO and oxygen anion occurs in the third region, where both the magnitudes of the anode and cathode activation overpotentials increase with the current density, and CO2 electrolysis is controlled kinetically. The large magnitudes of the anode and cathode activation overpotentials indicate that significant room exists for improvement of the cell's performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)615-619
Number of pages5
JournalSolid State Ionics
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - Nov 30 2004
EventFourteenth International Conference on Solid State Ionics - Monterey, CA., United States
Duration: Jun 22 2003Jun 27 2003



  • Activation overpotential
  • Carbon dioxide
  • Electrochemical reaction
  • Solid oxide electrolysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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