A Novel Mass Spectrometer for Characterization of Electrochemical Processes

Award Information
Department of Energy
Award Year:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Southwest Sciences, Inc.
1570 Pacheco Street, Suite E-11, Santa Fe, NM, 87505
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Dr. David S. Bomse
Principal Research Scientist
(505) 984-1322
Business Contact:
Mr. Alan C. Stanton
(505) 984-1322
Research Institution:
63 A Novel Mass Spectrometer for Characterization of Electrochemical Processes--Southwest Sciences, Inc., 1570 Pacheco Street, Suite E-11, Santa Fe, NM 87505-3937; (505) 984-1322 Dr. David S. Bomse, Principal Investigator Mr. Alan C. Stanton, Business Official DOE Grant No. DE-FG03-97ER82478 Amount: $75,000 Electrochemical processes are important to a wide variety of energy related systems such as the production of aluminum and chlorine, fuel cells, capacitors, batteries. Research tools are needed to study the electrochemical reactions in order to improve their energy efficiency. Mass spectroscopy is used to track these reactions, but overlapping signals from different compounds make it difficult to identify all key components in the reaction mixture. This project will develop an instrument-based new approach, called ionization energy modulated mass spectroscopy, that combines conventional mass spectral data with information about the ionization characteristics of the compounds in order to identify the different species present. The Phase I project will emphasize development of a high resolution electron source that will be coupled with a time-of-flight mass spectrometer to make a working ionization energy modulated mass spectrometer suitable for electrochemical studies. The Phase I instrument will be tested by examining mixtures of compounds pertinent to methanol fuel cell oxidation reactions. In Phase II the intensity of the electron source will be increased and the improved spectrometer will be used to study key electrochemical systems. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by the awardee: In addition to specialized measurements of electrochemical systems, ionization energy modulated mass spectrometry should become a general purpose laboratory technique for mixture analysis. Many standard analytical methods currently use gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometric detection (GC-MS). The chromatographic process is slow - ten minutes to an hour - while the mass spectrometric step is nearly instantaneous. The proposed chemical analysis technique should be able to provide rapid, direct analysis of mixtures. Overall measurement times could be reduced dramatically with a concomitant decrease in cost per sample.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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