Foil Bearing Supported Centrifugal Cathode Air Blower
Agency / Branch:
DOD / OSD
The proposed technology will reduce the size and weight of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) power systems for unmanned air vehicle and munition (UAV) applications thus making future UAVs lighter and more fuel efficient. In addition, the proposed technology will further enable the Air Force to move toward more electric aircraft. The technological advance will have a spillover benefit to land and sea based vehicles utilizing SOFC power systems. A high technology prototype cathode air blower was designed and partially built in Phase I. The cathode air blower is able to operate at very high speeds > 100,000 rpm because the rotating assembly is supported on foil air bearings. This high speed operation allows for a very small, light weight and efficient air blower which enables more power dense SOFC power systems. All targets for the blower have been exceeded with this design. At the beginning of Phase II the prototype cathode air blower will be delivered to the fuel cell integrator for system bench testing. During Phase II the prototype blower will be further optimized for efficiency, weight, size, performance, and low cost manufacturability. The blower will be tested to military specifications. Five prototype blowers will be delivered to the Air Force during Phase II for integration into SOFC systems.
Small Business Information at Submission:
R&D Dynamics Corporation
15 Barber Pond Road Bloomfield, CT 06002
Number of Employees: