Journal of Applied Electrochemistry

, Volume 41, Issue 5, pp 543–550 | Cite as

Impact of electrode separator on performance of a zinc/alkaline/manganese dioxide packed-bed electrode flow battery

  • Bryan D. Sawyer
  • Galen J. SuppesEmail author
  • Michael J. Gordon
  • Michael G. Heidlage
Original Paper


A zinc/alkaline/manganese dioxide packed-bed electrode flow battery was used to evaluate using granular materials with ionic activity as separating materials between electrodes, increasing the separation distance between electrodes, while using separating materials, and reversing the electrolyte flow direction through the flow battery. Results indicate that materials with more ionic activity (ion exchange resins) perform better than materials with limited ionic activity (stainless steel). Among the more ionically active materials, the basic material out-performed the acidic material with an anode-to-cathode flow regime at low current draw. The best performance was obtained using ALL-CRAFT 4K-activated carbon as separation material. The use of an ionically active separation material reduced the difference in cell performance between 2.22 and 5.40 cm of separation by 56%. Although expected to be an important parameter for packed-bed electrode flow battery, the electrolyte flow direction did not produce a discernable difference in performance using the low current draw of these studies.


Battery Flow Energy Packed-bed electrode Electrolyte Separator 



A special thanks is extended to the National Science Foundation (Award 0940720) for their generous financial support.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bryan D. Sawyer
    • 1
  • Galen J. Suppes
    • 1
    Email author
  • Michael J. Gordon
    • 1
  • Michael G. Heidlage
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Chemical EngineeringUniversity of MissouriColumbiaUSA

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