Date of Completion


Embargo Period



Dr. Ugur Pasaogullari, Dr. Jasna Jankovic, Dr. Trent Molter

Field of Study

Advanced Manufacturing for Energy Systems (AMES)


Master of Science

Open Access

Open Access


Rotating disk electrodes (RDE) provide a rapid, and reliable method of quantifying catalyst performance, however fabricating consistent RDEs require understanding of the role of fabrication parameters. The goal of this research is to identify the parameters that control the quality of a catalyst film and the role of these parameters that control the performance. To understand the role of environment, tests are conducted in ambient uncontrolled environments and in controlled environments. Catalyst film performance is measured with electrochemical methods. It was found that the uniformity of catalyst films directly affects the electrochemical performance when tested using RDE. The films that were dried in uncontrolled ambient conditions (temperatures, relative humidity) show inconsistencies in the film uniformity and catalyst performance (as measured by electrochemical surface area, mass activity, and specific activity measurements). These tests were also repeated using an environmental chamber that was designed to control relative humidity in an enclosed environment. The resulting catalyst ink films are consistent and repeatable when the ink drying process is controlled with optimized environmental parameters. The evaluation of these same measurements performed on the films dried in controlled environment showed that uniformity of film’s significantly improved all catalyst characterization parameters. Using the chamber developed during this research to control relative humidity, RDE films quality can be enhanced, resulting in enhanced performance. The environmental conditions have a significant impact on the film uniformity. It is postulated that the drying of the film, specifically evaporative removal of solvents from the ink has a significant impact, and this process can be controlled by controlling the temperature and the relative humidity.

Major Advisor

Dr. Ugur Pasaogullari