Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Name


Other Degree Name/Area of Focus

Applied Inorganic Chemistry

Department or School/College

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Committee Co-chair

Edward Rosenberg, Garon Smith

Commitee Members

Sandy Ross, Valeriy Smirnov, Tony Ward


alternative energy, catalyst, hydrogen, membrane, Palladium, silica sol-gel


University of Montana


The focus of this study was to systematically investigate the variables involved in electroless deposition of palladium and palladium alloy membranes on a known porous stainless steel substrate, and apply the results to a new and novel porous stainless steel substrate. Different oxide pore and surface treatments were studied. The effect of silica as a diffusion barrier, surface pore modifier, and palladium nucleation site was examined. Silica sol-gel coating treated stainless steel substrates were explored. Several different formulas of sol-gel coatings and their impact on palladium and palladium copper deposition were researched. The roles of sintering and annealing and their effect on the metal membrane deposition and metal flow were inspected.

It was observed that varying the plating conditions can alter the morphology of the deposited Pd and Pd/Cu alloy membrane. New silica sintering techniques were developed, and implemented. It was observed that the use of silica sol-gel treated , and sintered silica particles allowed Pd and Pd/Cu alloy deposition of a new and novel micro fabricated porous stainless steel support matrix. Sol-gel coating the stainless steel substrates allowed the application of a membrane that significantly decreased the migration of iron and chromium into the membrane, and in some cases totally stopping it, even after annealing at 10000C.



© Copyright 2012 William Glenn Pinson