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Oil-Free Hydrogen Compressor

Award Information

Department of Energy
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2005 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Mohawk Innovative Technology, Inc.
1037 Watervliet-Shaker Road Albany, NY 12205-2033
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2005
Title: Oil-Free Hydrogen Compressor
Agency: DOE
Contract: DE-FG02-05ER84245
Award Amount: $99,421.00


78952S Cost effective compression technology has been identified by DOE as one of the critical elements needed for effective pipeline delivery of hydrogen gas for both vehicular transportation and distributed electricity generation with fuel cells. Current hydrogen compression technology is plagued by poor reliability, poor durability, poor efficiency, and high cost. These current technologies also use oil lubrication, which poses contamination problems for fuel cells. This project will develop an oil-free, high speed centrifugal compressor that addresses the limitations in current technology. Tribologically engineered coatings will be applied to oil-free compliant foil bearings and seals. Combined with advanced high-speed drives and centrifugal compressors, this approach will offer the best solution to overcoming the current compression system limitations. In Phase I, trade-off,sizing, and configuration studies will be conducted to identify the critical technologies and components needed to develop high performance oil-free hydrogen compressors. Key tribological coatings and hydrogen testing requirements for the compressor components will be identified, and plans will be prepared for Phase II testing. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by the awardee: Besides compressors for hydrogen transportation, there exists substantial demand for natural gas pipeline and air compressors. Without the need for oil lubrication, reduced acquisition, maintenance and operating costs should be realized in the proposed oil-free pipeline compressors. Other applications that will benefit from oil-free bearings and seals with advanced coatings include distributed electricity generators such as mini and micro turbines, oil-free turbochargers for clean diesel engines, electrified turbocharger compressors for turbocompounding diesel engines, and automotive fuel cell applications.

Principal Investigator:

Hooshang Heshmat

Business Contact:

James F. Walton II
Small Business Information at Submission:

Mohawk Innovative Technology, Inc.
1037 Watervliet-Shaker Rd Albany, NY 12205

Number of Employees: N/A
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No