Oxygen-ion conducting solid oxide electrolyzer (SOE) has attracted a great deal of interest because it converts
electrical energy into chemical energy directly. The oxygen evolution reaction (OER) is occurred at the anode of solid
oxide electrolyzer as the O2- being oxidized and form O2 gas, which is considered as one of the major cause of overpotentials in steam electrolyzers. This paper investigates the electrolysis of steam based on cobalt oxide impregnated La0.8Sr0.2MnO3 (LSM) composite anode in an oxide-ion-conducting solid oxide electrolyzer. The conductivity of LSM is studied versus temperature and oxygen partial pressure and correlated to the electrochemical properties of the composite electrodes in symmetric cells at 800 °C. Different contents of Co3O4 (wt.1%, 2%, 4%, 6%, 8%, 10%) were impregnated into LSM electrode and it was found that the polarization resistance (Rp) of symmetric cells gradually improved from 1.16 Ω•cm2 (LSM) to 0.24 Ω•cm2 (wt.10%Co3O4-LSM). Steam electrolysis based on LSM and wt.6%Co3O4-LSM anode electrolyzers are tested at 800°C and the AC impedance spectroscopy results indicated that the Rp of high frequency process significantly decreased from1.1 Ω•cm2 (LSM) to 0.5 Ω•cm2 (wt.6%Co3O4-LSM) under 1.8V electrolysis voltage and the Rp of low frequency process decreased from 14.9 Ω•cm2 to 5.7 Ω•cm2. Electrochemical catalyst Co3O4 can efficiently improve the electrode and enhance the performance of high temperature solid oxide electrolyzer.