Leak Proof / Water tight Gas Diffusion Layers

Freudenberg GDL

We have been getting more questions and requests regarding Gas Diffusion Layers (GDL) that are water proof or which do not allow water to seep or leak through them.  This is especially of interest when building Magnesium Air Batteries (also known as Magnesium Air Fuel Cells), Microbial Fuel Cells (MFC), and a host of other electrochemical reactions with a liquid electrolyte that needs access to gas or oxygen. Most GDL materials have a high air permeability that also results in at least some … [Read more...]

Fuel Cell Catalyst Call Set in Motion

carbon-black-3-grades

College Station, TX -- Have a novel catalyst, but need a customer? Do you have a product that needs a competitive advantage? The Call for Catalysts initiative has been set in motion by FuelCellsEtc to help match companies with new technologies to those who need them. "FuelCellsEtc is often in contact with companies who are in the process of solidifying a design or are redesigning their existing products. We are in the perfect position to offer these customers a possible improvement on their … [Read more...]

Membrane Electrode Assembly (MEA) Activation Procedures

dry-mea

Why is an activation procedure or break-in necessary for a membrane electrode assembly (MEA)?  A large reason for performing an activation procedure or break-in is to properly humidify the membrane portion of the MEA that was dried out during the hot press stage of the membrane electrode assembly (MEA) production.  MEAs will not work well when they are not fully humidified (see article: Why is Humidity / Moisture Control Important in a Fuel Cell?). How do I Humidify a Membrane Electrode … [Read more...]

What is the Difference Between Carbon Paper and Carbon Cloth Based Gas Diffusion Layers (GDL)?

Gas Diffusion Layer Cloth Compared to Paper

Carbon Paper Gas Diffusion Layers Carbon Paper Gas Diffusion Layers (GDL) (e.g. Sigracet, Freudenberg, Toray, etc) tend to be thinner and more brittle than Carbon Cloth Gas Diffusion Layers (e.g. ELAT™, GDL-CT).  Each type has a different mass transport, porosity, hydrophobicity, and conductivity.   Papers such as Toray are quite hard and brittle, with very little compressibility.  These are good for designs where a tighter tolerance is permitted in the compression and where the thin GDL is … [Read more...]

What is the Purpose of a Gas Diffusion Layer (GDL)?

Gas Diffusion Layer (GDL)

The Gas Diffusion Layer (GDL) plays several critical roles in a typical fuel cell application and is often integrated as part of the Membrane Electrode Assembly (MEA). Typical applications that use GDLs consist of Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells (PEMFC) and Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC). When a GDL is coated with a catalyst it is than referred to as a Gas Diffusion Electrode (GDE), which are sometimes sold or installed separately from the Membrane or MEA.  Acting as an electrode is the easy … [Read more...]

Can I Purify Hydrogen from my HHO with a Metal Hydride?

HHO-Generator

We occasionally get questions from people wanting to know if they can use a Metal Hydride (MH) to purify the Hydrogen from an HHO generator, so I thought I would post our response here: No   Why? Putting HHO into a metal hydride container should not be done.  Aside from the fact that it would be extremely unsafe to put HHO gas in a chamber with a cataylst (e.g. MH) since it will cause it to burn/explode, both Oxygen and … [Read more...]

What Hydrogen Storage is Best for Me?

Metal Hydride

There are a number of different Hydrogen storage options available. The one which is best for you depends on what is most important for your application: Compressed Economical Readily Available Metal Hydride (MH) High volumetric density (kg H2/ft3) Heavy May need more advanced controls (heat/cool, etc) BoroHydrides High volumetric density Lighter than MH FAA approved for use on commercial aircraft (i.e. passenger can carry on) Complex … [Read more...]

Does FuelCellsEtc Provide Hydrogen Generators (or HHO) for Cars?

HHO Electrical Diagram

The short answer is no, we do not.  At this time we do not have any kits or systems designed to generate Hydrogen on-board for vehicles.  However, a quick Google search for HHOs brings up numerous kits and system suppliers.   However if you are looking in to building an HHO generator yourself, we do recommend taking a look at our Electrolyzer Membrane Electrode Assemblies (EZ MEAs). Our EZ MEAs are very efficient (far more efficient than a standard SS metal electrode) but certainly … [Read more...]

Fuel Cells for Hospitals, Apartments and Small Communities (100+ kW)

PureCell Model 400 by UTC Power

When it comes to larger fuel cell applications such as hospitals, apartment buildings and small communities there are only so many fuel cell companies with products ready for the market. These types of applications generally require upwards of 100kW.  At the moment the largest fuel cell we sell at FuelCellsEtc is 5 kW. We can combine several of them together to achieve 10-20 kW but any more than that usually makes sense to use a different system. So who do you go to for larger, stationary … [Read more...]

What Else do I Need for my Fuel Cell?

EOS5000 Fuel Cell

So, you have bought a Fuel Cell and are ready to start using it. Or are you? Did you plan on any of the ancillary components you might need?  Depending on who you buy the fuel cell from and what model it is will determine what components come with the fuel cell and what you will need to buy.  In general, a fuel cell system needs several things in order for it to work in any system: Hydrogen storage (which may also include H2 production) Fuel Cell system Power … [Read more...]