An unmet need has been identified: a high power and high energy density system that is environmentally safe and economically affordable is in urgent need. E. Chen’s group recently reported an innovative approach: using an electrolyte-free and air-independent membrane electrode assembling (MEA) to overcome the drawbacks of the current battery and fuel cell technologies ( E. Chen and R. Fenkelstien, Development of an Electrolyte-free, Oxygen-free, High-Performance, Single-Cell, Direct Methanol Fuel Cell (DMFC) on the 44th Proceedings of Power Sources Conference, 333-336, 2010). From a laboratory discovery to a commercial application is challenge under the conditions of no refueling, no catalyst and no CO2 or water emission. Membrane thickness and cell temperature effect on the MEA performance were studied. Results from six 0.5 cm2 single DMFC cells were presented. The cells were capable at a steady-state discharge of 50 mA for 12 hrs at 25ºC, 55ºC and -20ºC, with a nominal voltage of 6.7, 5.3, and 3.5V, respectively. The highest power density at room temperature is 2.43 kW/kg with the energy density of 24 kW.h/kg. All cell current density is 100 mA/cm2 regardless of the change of temperature. The charge vs. discharge efficiency results are among 90%.
Journal: TechConnect Briefs
Volume: Technical Proceedings of the 2011 Clean Technology Conference and Trade Show
Published: June 13, 2011
Pages: 204 - 207
Industry sector: Energy & Sustainability
Topics: Energy Storage