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Title: Development of a 5 kW Prototype Coal-Based Fuel Cell

The University of Akron Fuel Cell Laboratory pioneered the development of a laboratory scale coal-based fuel cell, which allows the direct use of high sulfur content coal as fuel. The initial research and coal fuel cell technology development (“Coal-based Fuel Cell,” S. S. C. Chuang, PCT Int. Appl. 2006, i.e., European Patent Application, 35 pp. CODEN: PIXXD2 WO 2006028502 A2 20060316) have demonstrated that it is feasible to electrochemically oxidize carbon to CO2, producing electricity. The key innovative concept of this coal-based fuel cell technology is that carbon in coal can be converted through an electrochemical oxidation reaction into manageable carbon dioxide, efficiently generating electricity without involving coal gasification, reforming, and water-gas shift reaction. This study has demonstrated that electrochemical oxidation of carbon can take place on the Ni anode surface and the CO and CO2 product produced can further react with carbon to initiate the secondary reaction. A carbon injection system was developed to inject the solid fuel without bringing air into the anode chamber; a fuel cell stack was developed and tested to demonstrate the feasibility of the fuel cell stack. Further improvement of anode catalyst activity and durability is needed to bring this novel coal fuel cellmore » to a highly efficient, super clean, multi-use electric generation technology, which promises to provide low cost electricity by expanding the utilization of U.S. coal supplies and relieving our dependence on foreign oil.« less
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  1. Univ. of Akron, OH (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
The Ohio Coal Development Office, Columbus, OH (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Country of Publication:
United States
13 HYDRO ENERGY Coal-based SOFC, Anode catalyst, Series Stack