Novel Conductive Water Removal Membrane (CWRM) for PEM Passive Fuel Cell Operation
Too much water, resulting in flooding, or too little water, resulting in electrolyte dryout, have both had negative impact upon fuel cell performance. ElectroChem proposes an SBIR research project to develop a Conductive Water Removal Membrane (CWRM) for PEM fuel cells operating at higher current densities in a passive mode. The membrane will 1) be wettable; 2) allow water to penetrate easily; 3) not permit gas to leak through; 4) be electrically conductive. ElectroChem proposes two approaches for fabrication. (1) integrate a highly electrically conductive material with a polymer membrane which provides the desired water permeation and gas retardation properties and (2) a CWRM membrane will be made with nanostructure materials.
At the end of Phase I we expect to document the analytical / experimental results validating the key parameters of CWRM. At the end of Phase II we expect to document the test performance of CWRM in a PEM fuel cell in agreement with the analytic predictions of Phase I.
Success of the proposal to develop a Conductive Water Removal Membrane (CWRM) will enable PEM fuel cells to operate at very high current densities passively.
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