Development of Light-Weight, Low-Cost Multichannels Membrane Reformer
A novel approach for the development of a lightweight, low-cost, compact, and quick start-up on-board fuel reformer is proposed in this Phase II program. The approach is based on a novel MER¿s technique for the fabrication of multichannel mini-reactors incorporating hydrogen separating membrane. Multichannel mini-reactor shrinks the dimensions through which energy and reactants travel to their desired location, an consequently, heat an mass transfer are dramatically improved. Membranes provide selective removal of hydrogen concurrently with the reaction, which makes possible higher than equilibrium fuel conversion. In the Phase II program multichannel reformer utilizing nanotechnology ceramic membrane will be developed. The fabrication technology for multichannel reactors as well as the technology for membrane deposition on microchannel walls will be optimized. All components of the experimental bench-scale and 5kW on-board partial oxidation multichannel membrane reformers will be designed and fabricated. Both bench-scale and on-board reformers will be tested; optimum operating conditions will be established and the cost effectiveness will be determined. It is expected that the produced results will demonstrate high efficiency and low cost of the proposed reformer. The development of multichannel membrane reformer will open up new opportunities for commercialization of on-board reforming technology for fuel cell-powered vehicles.
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