Sie sind auf Seite 1von 25

FUEL CELLS

What is a Fuel Cell ?

Invented by Sir William Groove in 1839.


Fuel cells are the devices that generate electricity by a
chemical reaction.
In other words, they convert CHEMICAL ENERGY to
ELECTRICAL ENERGY .
Generates electricity inside a cell through reactions b/w
a FUEL and an OXIDANT, triggered in the presence of
an electrolyte.
It has 2 Electrodes where reactions take place.
+VE CATHODE ( made of Ni ).
- VE - ANODE ( made of Pt ).
HYDROGEN is the basic fuel and OXYGEN is the
oxidant.

General representation
of a Fuel Cell

Generally HYDROGEN is used as the fuel and


OXYGEN as the oxidant.
Other fuels include HYDROCARBONS (Diesel,
Methanol) and ALCOHOLS. Other oxidants
include CHLORINE and CHLORINE DI-OXIDE.

Working of Fuel Cells

This
electro
lyte
may
be
Carbo
n
Paper

Working (Contd)

BLOCK DIAGRAM OF A FUEL


CELL
2H 4H + 4e

Net Reaction :
2H + O 2HO

O + 4H + 4e 2HO

DIFF. B/W A BATTERY & A


FUEL
CELL
A Battery
has all of its

BATTERY
chemicals stored
inside and converts
those chemicals into
electricity and in this
process eventually
goes DEAD and has to
be recharged or
thrown away.

Since chemicals
(mass) are stored
inside the system it's a
thermodynamically
CLOSED SYSTEM.

FUEL CELL

With a Fuel Cell, chemicals


constantly flow into the cell
and so it never goes dead.
As long as there is a flow of
chemicals into the cell, the
electricity flows out of the
cell.

Since chemicals (mass) flow


into and out of the system,
it's a thermodynamically
OPEN SYSTEM.

TYPES OF FUEL CELLS


A

fuel cell provides a DC voltage which can be used to power


motors, lights or any no. of electrical appliances.

Fuel

cells are usually classified by their OPERATING TEMP. & the


type of ELECTROLYTE they use.

Diff.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

types of fuel cells are,

Polymer Exchange Membrane Fuel cells (PEMFC).


Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC).
Molten Carbonate Fuel Cell (MCFC).
Alkaline Fuel Cell (AFC).
Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC).
Phosphoric - Acid Fuel cells (PAFC).

1. POLYMER / PROTON EXCHANGE


MEMBERANE FUEL CELL (PEMFC)
Also
called

Low
operating
temp., so
does not
take much
time to
warm up and
begin
generating
electricity.

POLYME
R
ELECTR
OLYTE
MEMBE
RANE
FUEL
CELL

1. POLYMER EXCHANGE
MEMBERANE FUEL CELL
(PEMFC)
Also called POLYMER ELECTROLYTE
MEMBERANE FUEL CELL.
This has a relatively low operating temp.
(60 to 80 degree Celsius), which indicates
that it doesnt take very long for the fuel
cell to warm up and begin generating
electricity.

2. SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELL


(SOFC)
CH3OH + H2O + 3O CO2 +
3H2O + 6e-

Overall Reaction:
CH3OH + 3/2 O2 CO2 + 2H2O + electrical
energy

3/2 O2 + 6e- 3O

2. SOLID OXIDE FUEL


CELL (contd)

Best suited for large-scale power generators which would


provide electricity for factories/towns.
Extremely advantageous as it uses many other types of
fuels (other than hydrogen) such as butane, methanol.
A solid called yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) is used
as the electrolyte allowing passage only to OXIDE ION .
Operates at 950C which may cause parts of fuel cells
to break.
This high temp also has an advantage- the steam
produced can be channeled into turbines to produce
electricity. This process is called CO-GENERATION OF
HEAT AND POWER (CHP) which improves overall .

3. MOLTEN-CARBONATE
FUEL CELL (MCFC)

3. MOLTEN-CARBONATE FUEL CELL (contd)


Like SOFC, these are best suited for large stationary

power generators.
Operate at around 600C.
Electrolyte is a liquid (molten) carbonate, which
is a negative ion and an oxidizing agent.
Because the electrolyte loses carbonate in the
oxidation reaction, the carbonate must be
replenished through some means. This is often
performed by re-circulating the carbon dioxide
from the oxidation products into the cathode
where it reacts with the incoming air and
reforms carbonate.
MCFC can be used for reducing the CO2 emission

CHARACTERISTICIS OF
DIFFERENT TYPES OF
FUEL
CELLS
CHARACTERIS
AFC
DMFC
MCFC
PAFC
PEMFC
TIC
Electrolyte

SOF
C

KOH

Polymer
Membrane

Liquid
Molten
Carbonat
e

Liquid
Phosphoric
Acid

Ion
Exchange
Membrane

Ceram
ic

60 - 90

60 - 130

650

200

80

1000

Efficiency

45 60%

40%

45 60%

35 40%

40 60%

50
65%

Power ( in
KW )

Up to 20

< 10

> 1000

>50

Up to 250

> 200

Submarines
, Spacecraft

Portable
Applications

Power
Stations

Power
Stations

Vehicles

Power
Statio
ns

Operating
Temp. ( in C)

Applications

APPLICATIONS

APPLICATIONS (contd)

They can be used in large stationary


applications to provide electricity and heat.
With operating temp. as low as 80C, they can
be used in household applications.
They promise to be an important source of
power for mobile electronic devices, offering
key advantages over conventional batteries
such as increased operating times, reduced
weight and ease of recharging.
In various forms, they could provide power for
majority of military equipments.

APPLICATIONS (contd)

APPLICATIONS (contd)

Eliminate

pollution caused by burning fossil fuels; the only by-product being WATER.
If the hydrogen used comes from the electrolysis of water, then they eliminate
GREENHOUSE GASES.
HYDROGEN is non- toxic.
Dont need conventional fuels such as oil/gas and can therefore eliminate economic
dependence on politically unstable countries.
Since the conversion of the fuel to energy takes place via an electrochemical
process, not combustion, the process is clean, quiet and highly efficient two to
three times more efficient than fuel burning.
The waste heat from a fuel cell can be used to provide hot water or space heating for
a home or office.
Silent in operation
Operating times are much longer than batteries.
Easy in maintenance as there are only a few moving parts.
HIGHER EFFICIENCY than diesel/gas engines.
Other benefits include HIGH RELIABILITY, MULTI FUEL CAPABILITY,
DURABILITY.

ADVANTAGES OF FUEL CELLS

DISADVANTAGES

Fuelling fuel cells is a problem, since the production,


transportation, distribution and storage of hydrogen is
difficult.
HYDROGEN is highly FLAMMABLE.
Slightly larger in size compared to batteries or
engines.
A typical fuel cell produces a voltage from 0.6 V to
0.7 V at full rated load.
To deliver the desired amount of energy, the fuel cells
can be combined in SERIES & PARALLEL CIRCUITS,
where SERIES yields HIGHER VOLTAGE, and
PARALLEL allows a HIGHER CURRENT to be
supplied. Such a design is called a fuel cell stack.
So occupies quite a big space.

ANY QUESTIONS ???

WAIT !!!
I HAV A QUESTION FOR U

WHY NOT BURN


HYDROGEN INSTEAD OF
USING IT IN A FUEL
CELL ???

ALTHOUGH HYDROGEN IS AN
EXTREMELY CLEAN BURNING
FUEL, ANY COMBUSTION PROCESS
MAY RESULT IN SMALL AMOUNTS
OF POLLUTANTS WHEREAS A FUEL
CELL HAS THE POTENTIAL TO EMIT
NONE.