Case 12526

Interconnected, 3-Dimensional Fuel Cell Design Prepared by Direct-Ink-Writing


3D fuel cell, solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC), chemical energy


    Increase efficiency and decrease losses in electrochemical fuel cell.


    Low volumetric efficiency, difficult assembly and high losses in conventional fuel cell design.


The invention describes a novel fuel cell design that uses a combined Direct-Ink-Writing (DIW)-CVD process forming an interconnected, 3-dimentional network to potentially overcome the limitations of the conventional tubular design, namely its low volumetric efficiency, difficult assembly and high losses. Each tube in the multi-tube SOFC device is prepared by layer-by-layer deposition of polymer precursor, mixed electronic-ionic conducting (MIEC) cathode material, solid electrolyte material, and cermet anode layer. A calcination step for polymer removal is performed, followed by gas supply of air and fuel to the respective electrodes.

  • Enhance surface-to-volume ratio
  • One single manufacturing step
  • Interconnected tube network is created in-situ
  • Minimum losses in the electrolyte

  • Prof. Harry L. Tuller (Department of Materials Science and Engineering, MIT)
  • Kathy Sahner (Department of Materials Science and Engineering, MIT)

Intellectual Property:

U.S. Patent Number 7,727,650, issued June 1, 2010



Last revised:December 19, 2012

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