Cover Picture: Copolymerization of Divinylsilyl-11-silicotungstic Acid with Butyl Acrylate and Hexanediol Diacrylate: Synthesis of a Highly Proton-Conductive Membrane for Fuel-Cell Applications (ChemSusChem 3/2009)



The cover picture shows the structure of the hybrid inorganic–organic polymer polydivinylsilyl-11-silicotungstic acid-co-butyl acrylate (picture courtesy of Mark T. Lusk, Colorado School of Mines). In their Communication on page 226, A. M. Herring and co-workers describe the preparation and characterization of this material for the first time as a free-standing, acidified film, suitable for a proton-exchange membrane fuel cell. The material phase separates into clusters that exhibit superior proton transport to that observed in standard perfluorosulfonic acid (PFSA) materials at 100% relative humidity. The materials require less water for proton transport than PFSA materials, pointing to the future potential of these materials for proton conduction under hotter and drier conditions than can currently be used with PFSA ionomers.

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