Room temperature micro-hydrogen-generator

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

64 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A new compact and cost-effective hydrogen-gas generator has been made that is well suited for supplying hydrogen to a fuel-cell for providing base electrical power to hand-carried appliances. This hydrogen-generator operates at room temperature, ambient pressure and is orientation-independent. The hydrogen-gas is generated by the heterogeneous catalytic hydrolysis of aqueous alkaline borohydride solution as it flows into a micro-reactor. This reactor has a membrane as one wall. Using the membrane keeps the liquid in the reactor, but allows the hydrogen-gas to pass out of the reactor to a fuel-cell anode. Aqueous alkaline 30 wt% borohydride solution is safe and promotes long application life, because this solution is non-toxic, non-flammable, and is a high energy-density (≥2200 W-h per liter or per kilogram) hydrogen-storage solution. The hydrogen is released from this storage-solution only when it passes over the solid catalyst surface in the reactor, so controlling the flow of the solution over the catalyst controls the rate of hydrogen-gas generation. This allows hydrogen generation to be matched to hydrogen consumption in the fuel-cell, so there is virtually no free hydrogen-gas during power generation. A hydrogen-generator scaled for a system to provide about 10 W electrical power is described here. However, the technology is expected to be scalable for systems providing power spanning from 1 W to kW levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-21
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Power Sources
Volume149
Issue number1-2
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 26 2005

Fingerprint

Hydrogen
generators
room temperature
hydrogen
Temperature
reactors
Gases
Fuel cells
Borohydrides
fuel cells
borohydrides
gases
gas generators
Membranes
membranes
cell anodes
Gas generators
Catalysts
catalysts
Hydrogen storage

Keywords

  • Catalyst
  • Fuel-cell
  • Hydrogen-generator
  • Portable power
  • Storage solution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrochemistry
  • Fuel Technology
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Energy (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Room temperature micro-hydrogen-generator. / Gervasio, Dominic F; Tasic, Sonja; Zenhausern, Frederic.

In: Journal of Power Sources, Vol. 149, No. 1-2, 26.09.2005, p. 15-21.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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