Ethanol Powered Fuel Cells

Kyushu Institute of Technology research group proposes using ethanol as a direct fuel in next-generation fuel cells.

Ethanol powered fuel cells up to now have had a number of drawbacks including low catalytic performance, poor fuel cell efficiency, and a decrease in open voltage due to ethanol crossover when the ethanol concentration was increased to boost efficiency. The Kyushu University research group is proposing the use of a direct ethanol fuel cell to address these problems.

First, it is possible to boost the fuel cell performance while operating at room temperature by using oxidized nanoparticles as the anode catalyst. Next a composite catalyst is used for the cathode catalyst. This arrangement curbs the decrease in the open voltage caused by ethanol crossover, and makes it possible to use a highly concentrated ethanol solution.

Researchers are looking to develop a commercially feasible low-load fuel cell that uses ethanol, a renewable fuel, as a direct fuel.

Run time 2.09 mins

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