She is researching the electrification of vehicles

Live Mölmen at the School of Engineering, Jönköping University.

How can the electrification of vehicles be improved? The doctoral student Live Mölmen is researching this at the School of Engineering, Jönköping University, and at the graduate school Smart Industry Sweden.

Live Mölmen, a doctoral student at the School of Engineering (JTH), Jönköping University (JU), and at the Smart Industry Sweden industrial graduate school, is researching a solution for improved electrification of vehicles, which would reduce global warming.

Live Mölmen is assembling a PEM fuel cell.

Live Mölmen is assembling a PEM fuel cell.

The research that Live Mölmen performs is located at the Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) and is about lifetime testing of materials for PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) fuel cells.

Cost-effective materials and manufacturing methods

Fuel cells generate electricity from chemical reactions that are amplified by a catalyst. Hydrogen fuel cells are one of the solutions for the electrification of vehicles, especially heavy duty vehicles where long range and fast refueling are important. But for fuel cells to pay off, cost-effective materials and manufacturing methods must be used. At the same time, all materials must be resistant to the fuel cell’s internal environment, which with high temperature, acidic pH and electrical potential is demanding for common materials such as steel and nickel.

“In my research project, I have two main focuses. The first is to test new, cost-effective material choices for different components in the fuel cell and analyze how they degrade. The second is to look at how a fuel cell with new components can be tested in a lab to measure and compare both performance and lifetime,” says Live Mölmen, doctoral student at the School of Engineering, Jönköping University, which is part of the Smart Industry Sweden network.

Support Swedish industry

The electrification of the transport sector is an important component in reducing global warming. To reach all segments in the transport sector, more alternatives than batteries are needed and fuel cells are one of them. Through Live Mölmen’s research, RISE builds knowledge and experience in both component and cell testing of fuel cells. This is knowledge that will be used to support Swedish industry in the transition to the production of components for PEM fuel cells. Her end goal is to contribute to the development of test methods for such a transition.

“It is incredibly rewarding to do research in an area with great development and the industry comes to us to build up its knowledge,” says Live Mölmen.

"Unique and interdisciplinary network"

Live Mölmen’s research project runs for five years and ends in 2023. She sees the Smart Industry Sweden industrial graduate school as a unique and interdisciplinary network where the participants have a great exchange of each other.

“No one can be an expert in everything and it takes a long time to learn new areas. The doctoral students in Smart Industry Sweden have very different focuses, but common for all is the focus on tomorrow’s industry. That way you can take advantage of the others’ expert knowledge to improve your own project and vice versa.

Live Mölmen, Smart Industry Sweden.

Live Mölmen spend many working hours in the lab and here she is mounting a PEM fuel cell in the fuel cell test station.