The proton conducting membrane was prepared by cross-linking highly sulfonated and sulfinated poly(etheretherketone) (SsPEEK). The cross-linked membrane is low cost due to its use of non-expensive chemical and simple production procedure. The membrane exhibited high proton conductivity (0.04 S/cm at 60 °C), extremely reduced water uptake, enhanced strength and stability compared with that of non-cross-linked membrane. These results suggested that the cross-linked PEEK membrane is a suitable candidate of proton conducting membranes for polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) applications, particularly promising to be used in direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) due to its lower methanol crossover.

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