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Novel Support Structure for Ceramic Electrochemical Devices

IB-1418

E.O. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

APPLICATIONS OF TECHNOLOGY:

  • Gas separation
  • Fuel cells
  • Catalytic reactors
  • Energy generation
  • Coal gasification
  • Selective oxidation of hydrocarbons

ADVANTAGES:

  • Economical
  • Increased reliability

 
       

ABSTRACT:

Berkeley Lab researchers Lutgard DeJonghe, Steven Visco, and Craig Jacobson have focused their attention on solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) and related technologies. Fuel cells "burn" hydrogen or hydrocarbons to produce electricity. They are highly fuel efficient and almost nonpolluting, making them an attractive alternative for energy generation. Some solid oxide fuel cells burn hydrocarbons by first converting them to hydrogen, while others burn them directly. The latter are the leading candidates for commercial applications.

Electrochemical devices based on ceramic electrodes and electrolytes are becoming increasingly important for energy generation, oxygen separation, coal gasification, and selective oxidation of hydrocarbons. Much of the cost of manufacturing these devices is in the raw materials. This innovation provides a means of reducing the materials costs and increasing the reliability of such devices. Using a novel support structure, Berkeley Lab's new device provides electrical conductivity, strength, and increased reliability, while allowing the use of very thin (5-20 µm) layers of electrodes and/or electrolyte. This invention should allow economical production of devices previously too expensive to commercialize.

       

STATUS:

REFERENCE NUMBER: IB-1418

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