On the accuracy of triple phase boundary lengths calculated from tomographic image data

Peter S. Jørgensen*, Kyle Yakal-Kremski, James Wilson, Jacob R. Bowen, Scott Barnett

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The triple phase boundary (TPB) length is one of the most important quantities obtainable from three dimensional reconstructions of solid oxide fuel cells that utilize porous composite electrodes. However, the choice of TPB calculation method and the voxelation of the microstructures can lead to systematic errors in TPB estimates. Here, two approaches for calculating the TPB density are compared to investigate how different TPB aspects such as curvature, orientation, and phase contact angles affect the results. The first approach applies a correction factor to the TPB length calculated by simply summing voxel (volume element) edge lengths that are shared between voxels of three different phases. The second approach applies a smoothening technique to the TPB curves. The two methods are compared by calculations on different kinds of artificially generated microstructures and on a real SOFC electrode microstructure obtained by focused ion beam tomography. Results are presented showing how specific aspects of different microstructures affect the TPB length calculation error.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)198-205
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Power Sources
StatePublished - Sep 1 2014


  • Accuracy
  • Microstructure
  • Solid oxide cell
  • Tomography
  • Triple phase boundary

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'On the accuracy of triple phase boundary lengths calculated from tomographic image data'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this