SBIR Phase I: Novel Processing of Mesoporous Materials for Intermediate-Temperature Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 0839146
Agency Tracking Number: 0839146
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2009
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: BC
Solicitation Number: NSF 08-548
Small Business Information
6490 S. McCarran Blvd, Suite 34, Reno, NV, 89509
DUNS: 076514343
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: Y
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Yanming Liu
 (775) 826-8868
Business Contact
 Yanming Liu
Title: DPhil
Phone: (775) 826-8868
Research Institution
This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project will demonstrate the feasibility of designing engineered mesoporous zirconia films for intermediate temperature (600ýýC) solid-oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs) with the aim of extending the basic and practical knowledge of synthesis as well as electronic behavior of mesoporous films, while at the same time producing materials that have a direct application in IT-SOFCs. This work will, for the first time, demonstrate mesoporous zirconia films for IT-SOFCs. The objectives of this study are: 1) refinement and detailed design of a large-scale and practical means of generating significant amounts of mesoporous zirconia powders and films, and 2) assessment of the ionic conductivity properties of the films. The successful completion of this project will result in mesoporous ceramic films with high electronic conductivity for IT-SOFCs. Compared to state-of-the-art, the proposed technology has competitive advantages including: synthesizing highly stable mesoporous materials, obtaining compacts with grain sizes in the nanometer regime, and allowing the determination of permeability and electronic properties in these types of materials. The broader impacts/commercial potential of this project is to aid in the development of less expensive fuel cells. This technology could provide a solution for portable power and partly eliminate the need for batteries. SOFCs offer a promising technology options for the fuel cell industry which is one of the fastest growing segments of the power industry due to the need for reliable power sources. Most SOFCs are used at the operating temperature of 800-1000ýýC because the resistance of the standard commercial electrolyte material is lower at high operating temperatures. To reduce the cost of the SOFCs and to accelerate their market application, the operating temperature of SOFCs needs to be decreased. Mesoporous zirconia is an excellent candidate material for the IT-SOFCs application. The mesoporous film technology is unique compared to the competing technology and will allow for the development of effective power sources. This technology is of increasing importance for the future energy needs of this country.

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

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