Pore-Size-Tuned Graphene Oxide Frameworks as Ion-Selective and Protective Layers on Hydrocarbon Membranes for Vanadium Redox-Flow Batteries

Soohyun Kim, Junghoon Choi, Chanyong Choi, Jiyun Heo, Dae Woo Kim, Jang Yong Lee, Young Taik Hong, Hee Tae Jung, Hee Tak Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


The laminated structure of graphene oxide (GO) membranes provides exceptional ion-separation properties due to the regular interlayer spacing (d) between laminate layers. However, a larger effective pore size of the laminate immersed in water (∼11.1 Å) than the hydrated diameter of vanadium ions (>6.0 Å) prevents its use in vanadium redox-flow batteries (VRFB). In this work, we report an ion-selective graphene oxide framework (GOF) with a d tuned by cross-linking the GO nanosheets. Its effective pore size (∼5.9 Å) excludes vanadium ions by size but allows proton conduction. The GOF membrane is employed as a protective layer to address the poor chemical stability of sulfonated poly(arylene ether sulfone) (SPAES) membranes against VO2+ in VRFB. By effectively blocking vanadium ions, the GOF/SPAES membrane exhibits vanadium-ion permeability 4.2 times lower and a durability 5 times longer than that of the pristine SPAES membrane. Moreover, the VRFB with the GOF/SPAES membrane achieves an energy efficiency of 89% at 80 mA cm-2 and a capacity retention of 88% even after 400 cycles, far exceeding results for Nafion 115 and demonstrating its practical applicability for VRFB.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3962-3968
Number of pages7
JournalNano letters
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jun 13

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research has been performed as a cooperation project of “Enhancing durability of redox flow batteries” and was supported by the Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology (KRICT). In addition, this work was supported by the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation & Planning (KETEP); the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy (MOTIE) of the Republic of Korea (no. 20152010103210); and the Climate Change Research Hub of KAIST (grant no. N1117056). This work was supported by KAIST Institute for the NanoCentury (KINC).

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2018 American Chemical Society.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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