Many folks would like to see us back on the Moon and developing its resources.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Off to the Moon - How might I be powered? - Fuel Cells considered.

Your laptop battery just went dead.
Your radio transceiver is quiet.
Your reading light just went out.
It is getting cold - oh, no it is getting hot.

What are you going to do?
Are we on the Moon or just back on Earth with gasoline prices going up
and in short supply?

You may well be aware of fuel cells that use hydrogen and oxygen to make
electricity and water. The Apollo missions used fuel cells to generate
electricity and provide drinking water. Fuel cells are used on the shuttle as well.

A more down to Earth application is the use of fuel cells to make electricity
that might power air conditioners or supply the power to an electric motor in
a bus or car.

Oxygen and Hydrogen are not the only fuels used in fuel cells.
- LRK -

Take a look at the Wikipedia link.

You don't need to have Oxygen and Hydrogen gas as the fuel source.
How about using sludge and bacteria.

You may want to see who has been building Fuel Cells for NASA.

Be aware that if you have a neat, new idea for a fuel cell, best check
to see if it is already been patented.

And if you need help with understanding patents.

Or what the Future of Fuel Cells is.

Thanks for looking up with me.

Larry Kellogg

Web Site:
RSS link:


The principle of the fuel cell was discovered by German scientist
Christian Friedrich Schönbein in 1838 and published in the January 1839 edition of the "Philosophical
Magazine".^[4] <> Based on
this work, the first fuel cell was developed by Welsh scientist Sir
William Robert Grove <>
in 1843. The fuel cell he made used similar materials to today's
phosphoric-acid fuel cell
<>. It wasn't
until 1959 that British engineer Francis Thomas Bacon
<> successfully
developed a 5 kW stationary fuel cell. In 1959, a team led by Harry
Ihrig built a 15 kW fuel cell tractor for Allis-Chalmers which was
demonstrated across the US at state fairs. This system used potassium
hydroxide as the electrolyte and compressed hydrogen and oxygen as the
reactants. Later in 1959, Bacon and his colleagues demonstrated a
practical five-kilowatt unit capable of powering a welding machine. In
the 1960s, Pratt and Whitney licensed Bacon's U.S. patents for use in
the U.S. space program to supply electricity and drinking water
(hydrogen and oxygen being readily available from the spacecraft tanks).

UTC <>'s Power subsidiary was the first
company to manufacture and commercialize a large, stationary fuel cell
system for use as a co-generation
<> power plant in hospitals,
universities and large office buildings. UTC Power continues to market
this fuel cell as the PureCell 200, a 200 kW system.^[5]
<> UTC Power continues to
be the sole supplier of fuel cells to NASA for use in space vehicles,
having supplied the Apollo missions
<> and currently the Space
Shuttle program <>,
and is developing fuel cells for automobiles, buses, and cell phone
towers; the company has demonstrated the first fuel cell capable of
starting under freezing conditions with its proton exchange membrane
<> automotive fuel

In 2006 Staxon
introduced an inexpensive OEM fuel cell module for system integration.
In 2006 Angstrom Power
a British Columbia based company, began commercial sales of portable
devices using proprietary hydrogen fuel cell technology, trademarked as
"micro hydrogen."^/
/ <>

Types of fuel cells


Microbial Fuel Cells

We have found that dissimilatory metal-reducing microorganisms, such as
Geobacter and Rhodoferax species, have the novel ability to directly
transfer electrons to the surface of electrodes. This had led to the
construction of microbial fuel cells that are superior to previously
described microbial fuel cells in that: 1) they are much more efficient;
2) they do not require the addition of the toxic electron shuttling
mediator compounds employed in previously described microbial fuel
cells; 3) they have remarkable long-term stability; and 4) it is
possible to harvest electricity from many types of waste organic matter
or renewable biomass. Immediate application of these microbial fuel
cells will be for powering electronic monitoring devices in remote
locations, such as the bottom of the ocean. However, many other
applications are possible. Current research is focusing on elucidating
the mechanisms of electron transfer between the microorganisms and the
electrode in order to design better electrodes or genetically engineer
better microbes for higher rates of electricity production.

[Sediment Battery Preparation
| .pdf (177 KB)]


As a global leader in efficient, reliable, sustainable energy
alternatives, UTC Power delivers innovative, practical solutions that
can power your success.
It's working every day. Everywhere.

Fuel Cells. Heat to energy solutions. Waste-power recycling. Power
plants on wheels. What may sound like science fiction to some, is
science fact at UTC Power. With hundreds of powered buildings and buses
operating in Europe and North America, our solutions are proving
themselves every day.

Our multi-million dollar research, development and testing investments
pay real dividends our customers can count on. UTC Power solutions
outperform virtually every other energy alternative. Unlike wind and
solar, our products work any time. You can count on their performance
without needing to count on nature's kindness.

Public safety facilities, schools, hospitals, phone companies and
forward-thinking businesses rely on UTC Power products every day. And
every hour of uptime with their mission-critical and life-safety
applications is further testament to our technology. It's not radical.
It's not experimental. It's not high risk. It's just good science,
working like it's supposed to for our clients every day.

*Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Corporation* (DMFCC)* is a provider of
disposable fuel cartridges and intellectual property protection for
manufacturers of direct methanol and other liquid hydrocarbon fuel
cells. Methanol fuel cells are replacements for traditional batteries
and are expected to gain a substantial market share because they offer
longer operating time as compared to current lithium ion batteries and
may be instantaneously recharged by simply replacing the disposable fuel
cartridge. DMFC products are being developed for these applications by
companies such as Samsung in Korea, and by Toshiba, NEC, Hitachi and
Sanyo in Japan. Sales are expected to reach billions of dollars within a
few years. With state of the art proprietary products, a global standard
distribution network, and a comprehensive suite of fundamental fuel cell
patents, DMFCC has a mechanism in place to advance this exciting new

The direct methanol fuel cell was invented and developed at the
Caltech/NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of Southern
California (USC) and is protected by more than 56 issued and 62 pending
patents worldwide. DMFCC has license rights to the Caltech intellectual
property portfolio for direct liquid hydrocarbon fuel cells (including
direct methanol fuel cells, DMFC), electrode construction, membrane
electrode assemblies (MEAs), fuel cell systems, methanol sensor and
filter, electrolysis of methanol to form hydrogen, and methanol fuel
cartridges. Caltech and USC are founding shareholders in DMFCC. VIASPACE
Inc. and Itochu Corporation are also DMFCC�s current investors.

And if you need help with understanding patents.

*CONTENTS* 14pg 64K 7fig
1. Introduction <>
2. Development consultants vs patent attorneys
3. Search patents before developing
4. Inventors vs developers <>
5. Patents as a source of information
6. Patent It Yourself Book <>
7. The three types of patents
8. The intellectual property big picture
9. Should you get a patent or just produce?
10. Selling your idea to a larger corporation?
11. Can you get a patent after disclosure?
12. How long is a patent valid for?
13. When to get a patent <>
14. First to patent or invent?
15. Provisional patents <>
16. Should you get a US or other patent?
17. Cost of a patent search
18. Cost to get a patent <>
19. Writing your own patent
20. Using a patent attorney
21. Patent searching <>
22. Europe's network of patent databases
23. US Patent Trademark Office
24. Delphion Intellectual Property Network
25. Canadian Patent Office <>
26. Patscan computer patent search
27. Reading the patent <>
28. Reading the patent first page
29. Reading the patent drawings
30. Reading the patent field and background
31. Reading the patent summary
32. Reading the patent description
33. Reading the patent claims
34. Patentability <>
35. Infringement <>
36. Coverage <>
37. Professional developers
38. Legal disclaimer <>
39. References <>
40. Revision history <>
>>>Copyright <>
>>> <>

Or what the Future of Fuel Cells is.
*CONTENTS* 11pg 57K 11fig
1. Abstract <>
2. Introduction <>
3. Background <>
4. How does a fuel cell work?
5. Types of fuel cells <>
6. Fuel cells for electric power production
7. Fuel cells for transportation
8. Solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC)
9. Direct alcohol fuel cell (DAFC)
10. Polymer electrolyte fuel cell (PEFC)
11. Phosphoric acid fuel cell (PAFC)
12. Molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC)
13. Alkaline fuel cell (AFC)
14. Fuels <>
15. Forms of energy <>
16. Temperament vs temperature
17. Fuel cells vs heat engines
18. Second law analysis of fuel cells
19. Companies involved in research
20. Conclusions <>
21. Notes <>
22. References <>
23. Symbols <>
24. Revision History <>
>>>Copyright <>




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