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CURRENT COLLECTOR CONTACT DESIGN FOR THIN FILM FUEL CELLS

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000009870D
Original Publication Date: 2000-May-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2002-Sep-25
Document File: 2 page(s) / 121K

Publishing Venue

Motorola

Related People

Stephen Rogers: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

The design of the Thin Film Fuel Cell (TFFC) as proposed and detailed by C. Dyer (U. S. patents 4,863,813; 4,988,582; 5,094,928) is significantly different from conventional polymer electrolytic membrane (PEM) fuel cells. The TFFC impermeable solid substrate design operates in a mixed fuel/oxidant gas environment.

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MOTOROLA

Technical Developments

CURRENT COLLECTOR CONTACT DESIGN FOR THIN FILM FUEL CELLS

by Stephen Rogers and Joseph Bostaph

The design of the Thin Film Fuel Cell (TFFC) as proposed and detailed by C. Dyer (U. S. patents 4,863,813; 4,988,582; 5,094,928) is significantly different from conventional polymer electrolytic membrane (PEM) fuel cells. The TFFC impermeable solid substrate design operates in a mixed fuel/oxidant gas environment.

Fuel cells in general, are "battery replacements", and like batteries, provide higher voltage potentials through series connection of the elements and greater current capacities through parallel connection of the elements.

Connecting fuel cell elements is usually referred to as stacking. In conventional fuel cells, stack connections are made between PEM assemblies with conducti ve plates, machined with channels or grooves for gas distribution.

Thin Film Fuel Cells operate between 0.100 0.825 volt. To power a device requiring greater potentials, multiple TFFCs need to be connected in series for bipolar voltage adding. This is accomplished by connecting the positive electrode (cathode) of the first TFFC to the negative electrode (anode) of the second TFFC. The positive electrode of the second TFFC to the negative electrode of the third TFFC, and so on, until the desired potential is obtained.

As an example, the optimum operating potential for the TFFC is typically 0.5 volts. A 3.0 volt TFFC stack would consist of a series connection of 6 TFFCs. Similarly, a stack ofTFFCs can be connected in parallel for greater current capacity by having all the positive electrodes of the individual TFFCs

Motorola. Inc. 2000

connected and all the negative electrodes of the individual TFFCs connected.

Again, by example, 6 TFFCs each operating at 0.5 volts and 100mA connected in a parallel ...