Composite Metal-Ceramic Hydrogen Separation Membranes

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-FG02-04ER84086
Agency Tracking Number: 75828S04-I
Amount: $99,999.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2004
Solicitation Year: 2004
Solicitation Topic Code: 37
Solicitation Number: DOE/SC-0075
Small Business Information
Synkera Technologies, Inc.
2021 Miller Drive, Suite B, Longmont, CO, 80501
HUBZone Owned: Y
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Dmitri Routkevitch
 (720) 651-4001
Business Contact
 Stephen Williams
Title: Dr.
Phone: (720) 494-8401
Research Institution
75828-Energy-efficient, cost-effective hydrogen production is necessary to support the increasing demand for clean fuels. Unfortunately, existing technologies for the separation of hydrogen from other gases are expensive and complicated. Membrane separation is a promising technology, which offers high flux and high selectivity, enabling substantial energy savings; however, advances are necessary to improve membrane performance, reliability, and manufacturability before the technology can be transferred out of the laboratory. This project will develop and test a novel, dense-metal Pd membrane supported by nanoporous alumina ceramic, which should be capable of 10 times or greater increases in hydrogen flux over the state of the art, with no reduction in hydrogen selectivity. In addition, the membranes will be compatible with harsh operating conditions (high-temperature/pressure, chemically aggressive), exhibit superior long-term reliability due to their unique architecture, and be produced with low-cost, scalable processes. In Phase I, appropriate nanoporous ceramic support membranes will be fabricated, followed by the integration of ultrathin (<200 nm) Pd layers. The resulting composite membrane will be thoroughly characterized by SEM (Scanning Electron Microscopy) and XRD (X-Ray Diffraction), and then measurements of hydrogen flux and selectivity will be made. The membranes also will be subjected to vigorous reliability testing in the presence of varying environmental parameters, to assess their long-term survivability in use. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by the awardee: The composite membranes should enable low-cost, distributed hydrogen production and purification, leading to improvements in the efficiency of many energy-intensive petroleum refinement and petrochemical production processes.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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