USA flag logo/image

An Official Website of the United States Government

Low Cost, Trace Level Sulfur Sensor for Hydrogen Fuel Cells

Award Information

Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch:
Air Force
Award ID:
86754
Program Year/Program:
2009 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
F073-123-1473
Solicitation Year:
N/A
Solicitation Topic Code:
N/A
Solicitation Number:
N/A
Small Business Information
Techno-Sciences, Inc.
11750 Beltsville Drive 3rd Floor Beltsville, MD -
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
 
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2009
Title: Low Cost, Trace Level Sulfur Sensor for Hydrogen Fuel Cells
Agency / Branch: DOD / USAF
Contract: FA8501-09-C-0035
Award Amount: $749,957.00
 

Abstract:

The progress in reliable fuel cell technology will have a tremendous impact towards the development of a robust hydrogen economy. However, the requirement of high-purity hydrogen for fuel cell performance imposes a major technical barrier against the utilization of fuel cells in the DOD applications. In particular, hydrogen extracted from military logistical fuel (JP8) by reformers contains sulfur compounds, which ruin the catalyst and degrade the fuel cell performance. Therefore, an inexpensive and innovative method is needed to continuously monitor the process stream of military logistical fuel for sulfur and other impurities. Techno-Sciences, Inc. together with university partner Oklahoma State University proposes to develop a novel, low cost, nanoparticle surface plasmon resonance sensor capable of detecting part per billion trace levels of sulfur compounds present in the fuels utilized by hydrogen fuel cells. The sensor development employs a unique nanofabrication technique, "electroless reduction of silver nanoparticles on silicon", combined with a novel sensing mechanism based on "hybrid plasmon damping". In Phase I, the validity of the approach has been demonstrated as a proof of concept by using bench top experimental set ups and analysis technologies. Phase II effort will address the prototype development for use in field conditions and technology integration with fuel cell industry. BENEFIT: The proposed effort will be applicable to a wide range of defense, commercial and residential end users. The initial effort will be particularly attractive to military and commercial power generation applications for contingency and mobile purposes. The sensor technology will be inexpensive, mobile and easily extensible to a wide variety of emerging sulfur detection problems for fuel cell based power systems. The commercial availability of the sensor will appeal to fuel cell industry, specifically, reformer manufacturers, fuel cell manufacturers, fuel cell end users as well as academic end users who work on development and optimization of future generation, more efficient fuel cell technologies. It is to be emphasized that low cost, trace level sulfur sensor is also applicable in the areas of gun powder detection, bio-hazard detection and threat detection, and has an environmental impact since the sulfur compounds in fossil fuels cause acid rains.

Principal Investigator:

Murat Yasar
Principal Investigator
2407900600
yasarm@technosci.com

Business Contact:

Amy Hizoune
Vice President, Finance
2407900609
aph@technosci.com
Small Business Information at Submission:

TECHNO-SCIENCES, INC.
11750 Beltsville Drive 3rd Floor Beltsville, MD 20705

EIN/Tax ID: 952954785
DUNS: N/A
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No