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An Advanced Onboard Fuel Reformer for Fuel Cell Vehicles

Award Information

Department of Defense
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
1994 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Aspen Systems, Inc.
184 Cedar Hill Street Marlborough, MA 01752-3017
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: Yes
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 1994
Title: An Advanced Onboard Fuel Reformer for Fuel Cell Vehicles
Agency / Branch: DOD / DARPA
Contract: N/A
Award Amount: $98,864.00


Aspen Systems proposes an advanced onboard high purity hydrogen production subsystem for fuel cell vehicles. Ultrahigh purity hydrogen will be produced from liquid hydrocarbons utilizing a novel catalytic-membrane-based fuel reformer. The ultra-high purity hydrogen will be perfectly suitable for PEM fuel cell operation for environmentally acceptable and tactically favorable means of power generation. Aspen's reformer offers potential benefits of system simplicity, high modularity and high fuel conversion efficiency. In Phase I, we will experimentally demonstrate the superior hydrogen permselectivity ofthe catalytic membranes at elevated temperatures. We will also demonstrate the feasibility of producing high purity hydrogen from liquid fuels utilizing a catalytic membrane easily scaleable, cost effective onboard fuel reformer, and integrated hybrid power source for fuel cell vehicles. Anticipated Benefits: Largest commercial market will be automobile industries. By incorporating with well-developed PEM fuel cells, the proposed advanced reformer can supply power for the zero emission vehicles (ZEV). In addition, there will be a number of DOD applications, such as high power density power sources for remote site operations, silent watch, communications, etc.

Principal Investigator:

Jae Ryu

Business Contact:

Small Business Information at Submission:

Aspen Systems, Inc.
184 Cedar Hill Street Marlborough, MA 01752

Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No