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Title: Fuel cell with interdigitated porous flow-field

Abstract

A polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell is formed with an improved system for distributing gaseous reactants to the membrane surface. A PEM fuel cell has an ionic transport membrane with opposed catalytic surfaces formed thereon and separates gaseous reactants that undergo reactions at the catalytic surfaces of the membrane. The fuel cell may also include a thin gas diffusion layer having first and second sides with a first side contacting at least one of the catalytic surfaces. A macroporous flow-field with interdigitated inlet and outlet reactant channels contacts the second side of the thin gas diffusion layer for distributing one of the gaseous reactants over the thin gas diffusion layer for transport to an adjacent one of the catalytic surfaces of the membrane. The porous flow field may be formed from a hydrophilic material and provides uniform support across the backside of the electrode assembly to facilitate the use of thin backing layers. 9 figs.

Inventors:
Issue Date:
Research Org.:
University of California
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE, Washington, DC (United States)
OSTI Identifier:
512415
Patent Number(s):
5,641,586
Application Number:
PAN: 8-568,088
Assignee:
Univ. of California Office of Technology Transfer, Alameda, CA (United States) PTO; SCA: 300501; PA: EDB-97:111415; SN: 97001827931
DOE Contract Number:  
W-7405-ENG-36
Resource Type:
Patent
Resource Relation:
Other Information: PBD: 24 Jun 1997
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
30 DIRECT ENERGY CONVERSION; SOLID ELECTROLYTE FUEL CELLS; MEMBRANES; DESIGN; MEMBRANE TRANSPORT; ELECTROCATALYSTS; POROUS MATERIALS; GAS FLOW

Citation Formats

Wilson, M.S. Fuel cell with interdigitated porous flow-field. United States: N. p., 1997. Web.
Wilson, M.S. Fuel cell with interdigitated porous flow-field. United States.
Wilson, M.S. Tue . "Fuel cell with interdigitated porous flow-field". United States.
@article{osti_512415,
title = {Fuel cell with interdigitated porous flow-field},
author = {Wilson, M.S.},
abstractNote = {A polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell is formed with an improved system for distributing gaseous reactants to the membrane surface. A PEM fuel cell has an ionic transport membrane with opposed catalytic surfaces formed thereon and separates gaseous reactants that undergo reactions at the catalytic surfaces of the membrane. The fuel cell may also include a thin gas diffusion layer having first and second sides with a first side contacting at least one of the catalytic surfaces. A macroporous flow-field with interdigitated inlet and outlet reactant channels contacts the second side of the thin gas diffusion layer for distributing one of the gaseous reactants over the thin gas diffusion layer for transport to an adjacent one of the catalytic surfaces of the membrane. The porous flow field may be formed from a hydrophilic material and provides uniform support across the backside of the electrode assembly to facilitate the use of thin backing layers. 9 figs.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1997},
month = {6}
}