Skip to main content

Enhanced ionic conductivity of samaria doped ceria thin films through tailoring the dopant concentration and microstructures

EMSL Project ID


Development of electrolyte materials that possess high oxygen ion conductance at relatively low temperatures is essential to increase the efficiency and lifetime of electrochemical devices such as solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC). The most advanced SOFCs employ oxide ion conducting zirconia based electrolytes, specifically, yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ). The conductivity of the electrolyte determines the operating temperature of this device, which is currently around 1000 °C. Lower operating temperatures of ~500 °C would make SOFCs much more cost efficient and, most importantly, facilitate the practical use of SOFCs in electric vehicles. At low operation temperature, it will avoid many undesirable interfacial reactions between electrode and electrolyte materials. At low operation temperatures, superior high ionic conductivity of oxide electrolytes layer (>10-2 S/cm) is required to the success of future fuel cell technology.

Recently, samaria doped ceria (SDC) have received much attention in the literature due to its high ionic conductivity and high oxygen ion transport, and they are considered to be the most promising solid electrolytes for the intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). Although SDC materials show promising results, there are controversies regarding the dopant concentration that provide higher values for ionic conductivity. The discrepancies in ionic conductivity are mostly due to different sample preparation methods and the crystalline quality associated with these methods. Most of the previous experiments in the literature were focused on the polycrystalline ceramics. It was recommended that maintenance of small nanocrystal grain size and utilization of grain boundary interfaces (by adjust density, composition, orientation) can enhance oxygen ionic conductivity in SOFC electrolytes.

Project Details

Project type
Large-Scale EMSL Research
Start Date
End Date


Principal Investigator

Zhongqing Yu
Nanjing Normal University

Related Publications

Adsorption of iso-/ n -butane on an anatase thin film: a molecular beam scattering and TDS study Journal Catalysis Letters Publisher Springer Netherlands ISSN 1011-372X (Print) 1572-879X (Online) Issue Volume 116, Numbers 1-2 / July, 2007 DOI 10.1007/s10562-007-9121-x Pages 9-14
Conductivity of Oriented Samaria-Doped Ceria Thin Films Grown by Oxygen-Plasma-Assisted Molecular Beam Epitaxy Z. Q. Yu,a Satyanarayana V. N. T. Kuchibhatla,b,c,- L. V. Saraf,b,-- O. A. Marina,b,-- C. M. Wang,b M. H. Engelhard,b,-- V. Shutthanandan,b P. Nachimuthu,b and S. Thevuthasanb
Growth and structure of epitaxial Ce0.8Sm0.2O1.9 by oxygen-plasma-assisted molecular beam epitaxy Z.Q. Yua,, Satyanarayana V.N.T. Kuchibhatlab,c, M.H. Engelhardb, V. Shutthanandanb, C.M. Wangb, P. Nachimuthub, O.A. Marinab, L.V. Sarafb, S. Thevuthasanb,, S. Sealc
I. Lyubinetsky, Z. Yu, M. A. Henderson, Direct Observation of Adsorbption Evolution and Bonding Configuration of TMAA on TiO2 (110), J. Phys. Chem. C 2007(111),4342.
Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section B: Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms, Volume 261, Issues 1-2, August 2007, Pages 723-726
Reproducible tip fabrication and cleaning for UHV STM Z.Q. Yu, C.M. Wang, Y. Du, S. Thevuthasan, I. Lyubinetsky
Solid State Ionics
Summary of Proposal 19815
.Z. Q. Yu, Y. Zhang, C. M. Wang, I. V. Lyubinetsky, M. H. Engelhard, L. V. Saraf, D. E. McCready, V. Shutthanandan, C. Henager, and S. Thevuthasan, Synthesis and Characterization of Compositionally graded Si1-xGex layers on Si substrate. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, B261, (2007)723-726. 3.Z. Q. Yu, C. M. Wang, M. H. Engelhard, I. V. Lyubinetsky, D. E. McCready, and S. Thevuthasan, Epitaxial growth and microstructure of Cu2O nanoparticle /thin films on SrTiO3 (100), Nanotechnology 18(2007)1-5. 4.I. Lyubinetsky, Z. Yu, M. A. Henderson, Direct Observation of Adsorbption Evolution and Bonding Configuration of TMAA on TiO2 (110), J. Phys. Chem. C 2007(111),4342. 5.Z. Q. Yu, C. M. Wang, R. Shao, I. V. Lyubinetsky, O. A. Marina, M. H. Engelhard, L. V. Saraf, D. E. McCready, V. Shutthanandan, Y. W. Zhang, and S. Thevuthasan, Effect of dopant concentration and structure on the ionic conductivity of samaria –doped ceria epitaxial thin films, AVS 53rd International Symposium, November 12 through November 17, 2006 in San Francisco, CA, USA.