New Proton Exchange Membranes for Fuel Cells

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 41531
Amount: $99,783.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 1998
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
140 E. Arrow Highway, San Dimas, CA, 91773
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Ying Wang
 (909) 394-0644
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution
We propose to develop a new class of proton exchange membranes (PEM) based on polyphenylene polymers. These new PEM's are designed to overcome fuel crossover problems encountered with conventional sulfonated fluoropolymers. Recently, Maxdem has conducted preliminary studies of polyphenylene PEM's and demonstrated the outstanding properties of these materials for proton conductivity. The proton conductivities of some of these polymer materials are much higher than Dupont's Nafionr membranes, even at high temperature (>100¿C). Films with methanol absorption comparable to the commercial products showed better performance in operating direct methanol fuel cells (DMFC). A new approach is proposed in this proposal to minimize the solvent crossover while maintaining high proton conductivity. Further investigation based on the preliminary results is expected to provide PEM's for practical fuel cell applications with unmatched performance and at lower costs than current commercial products. The new PEM's with optimized properties are expected to find immediate applications in both hydrogen and direct methanol fuel cells. BENEFITS: The novel proposed electrolytes would allow major advances in small, light and more efficient fuel cells by providing high conductivity and low fuel crossover. Light weight, high energy density fuel cells are needed for powering electric vehicles and for manportable applications. Both defense (future soldier systems), and civilian (electric cars) applications present large potential markets.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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