Case 12526

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

Keywords:

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

Applications:

    Increase efficiency and decrease losses in electrochemical fuel cell.

Problem:

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

Technology:

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.

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

Inventors:
  • 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

Publications:

N/A

Last revised:December 19, 2012

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