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“F-Cell” 2009: Fuel cells in the market – Japan shows the way

The ninth forum for producers and users of fuel cells, “f-cell”, on September 28 and 29, 2009, in Stuttgart will be presenting the entire bandwidth of stationary, mobile, and portable fuel cell applications. Focal points in 2009: “Fuel cells in vehicles.” Also: “How Japan is driving forward the market entry of fuel cells.”

Stuttgart (eos) –  On September 28 and 29, 2009, Stuttgart will once again become the hub of the international “fuel cell community”: The ninth specialist forum “f-cell” –  congress and trade fair – will show the status of development and marketing of stationary, mobile, and portable fuel cell applications. “The focus this year will be on fuel cells in vehicles, and another main aspect will be activities in Japan,” explains Peter Sauber, managing director of the “Peter Sauber Agentur Messen und Kongresse GmbH”, which is organizing this industry-specific event jointly with the “Wirtschaftsförderung Region Stuttgart GmbH (WRS – regional economic promotion).

Main topic: Japan
The event organizer has intensified his good contacts to Japan, enabling him to acquire interesting speakers for the f-cell, including Nissan and Daihatsu, even at this early stage. “Japan is one of the countries that are setting the pace in the deployment of fuel cells,” says Sauber. He recently organized a joint booth for German companies at the FC Expo in Tokyo. “The trade fair with a total of 450 exhibitors made clear that fuel cell technology has already found a place in the everyday life of a great many companies in Japan. That creates the critical mass that enables market entry for the technology, placing Japan far ahead of us.” In order to provide f-cell visitors with comprehensive insight into Japanese activities, one or two speakers from Japan will make presentations in each of the specific f-cell forums. “We will schedule the presentations in such a way that those who are interested can switch between the forums and hear all the Japanese lectures,” explains the event organizer, who is also organizing a one-week delegation trip to Baden-Württemberg for representative from Japanese companies and research facilities, which will include not only the “f-cell”.

Information on “f-cell”
Those who are interested can find more information on the “f-cell” on the internet at: www.f-cell.de The Peter Sauber Agency can be reached by telephone at 0711-656960-50. The current program for the “f-cell” 2009 will be available on the event homepage from around the end of May onwards.

Stuttgart, March 2009

Peter-Sauber

“f-cell” event organizer Peter Sauber (left), managing director of the Peter Sauber Agentur Messen und Kongresse GmbH, maintains personal contact to speakers and visitors. In Japan, he recently acquired exciting lecture topics for the “f-cell” 2009 on September 28 and 29 in Stuttgart.
Photo: Peter Sauber Agency / Hindley
Kato

The development and marketing of fuel cell applications in Japan will be one of the focal issues of this year’s specialist forum f-cell on September 28 and 29 in Stuttgart. Last year, Takehiko Kato (photo), President of the Interlink Corporation in Tokyo, Japan, clearly illustrated the pioneering role of his country with regard to stationary applications.
Photo: Peter Sauber Agency / Fabry

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May 2, 2009 - 8:14 PM Comment (1)

CTC Donates Hydrogen Fuel Cells

Phase one is complete….. We found some hydrogen fuel cells – thanks to CTC (Concurrent Technologies of Johnstown Pa). The good folks at CTC believe in Project GreenHouse and have graciously donated 3 fuel cells to the cause. We will be working with an operational 1kw and 2kw hydrogen fel cell and a 1kw parts fuel cell that no longer works (perfect for learning about their nuts and bolts).
Next step, locate some good solar and wind people to help get the Alternative Energy Learning Center off the ground.

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May 2, 2009 - 12:14 PM No Comments

Hydrogen Fuel Tank gets cooler and cleaner

Scientists have improved the performance of ammonia borane as a hydrogen storage material – making it more practical for a fuel tank in hydrogen-powered vehicles. The material was enhanced by the addition of catalytic nanoparticles to the structure, allowing it to release hydrogen more cleanly and at lower temperatures.

Finding ways to store hydrogen to run next-generation fuel cell vehicles is a challenge, since traditional metal canisters filled with compressed or liquefied hydrogen gas are heavy, bulky and expensive. A better solution is to use a solid material, and the most promising candidate for this is ammonia borane (NH3BH3) – a waxy solid consisting largely of hydrogen.

However, there are drawbacks to using this material. Releasing the hydrogen can be tricky, usually requiring heating at over 100°C, which is too hot for polymer-based fuel cells to operate. In addition, the material is prone to become unstable – expanding rapidly or turning into foam – and released hydrogen can be poisoned by other gases released from the heated material.

Now, Ping Chen and colleagues at the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, in Dalian, China, have modified the structure of ammonia borane to eliminate these problems. ‘By introducing nanoparticles of cobalt and nickel catalysts into the structure we can hold nearly 6 per cent by weight of hydrogen at a temperature as low as 59°C – with no byproduct and sample foaming,’ Chen told Chemistry World.

Better breakdown

The team worked in collaboration with researchers at the National University of Singaporeand used a ‘co-precipitation’ method to uniformly distribute a small amount of catalytic nanoparticles throughout the ammonia borane structure. The new material releases hydrogen at the lowest temperature so far – and the high stability makes it an attractive candidate for further investigation as a practical onboard hydrogen storage material.

‘This system lowers the temperature for hydrogen gas release and therefore has potential as an efficient way to supply hydrogen to a fuel cell,’ says Tom Autrey at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Washington, US, who led the first investigations into the storage potentials of ammonia borane. ‘This process also reduces the concentration of borazine – an unwanted impurity in the hydrogen that can arise from AB decomposition.’

But there is still work to be done, Autrey notes, before this technology is truly able to blossom. Since the process is not yet easily reversible, a system will be needed that allows the fuel tank to easily be recharged with hydrogen.

Lewis Brindley

http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/archives/2009/May/01050903.asp

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May 2, 2009 - 12:07 PM No Comments