U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
Fuel Cell Technologies Office
High Temperature Membrane Working Group
The High Temperature Membrane Working Group consists of government, industry, and university researchers interested in developing high temperature membranes for fuel cells.
Polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells typically operate at temperatures no higher than 60°C–80°C due to structural limitations of the membrane. Operating PEM fuel cell stacks at higher temperatures (120°C for transportation and 150°C for stationary applications), however, would yield significant energy benefits.
For example, heat rejection is easier at higher temperatures, which would allow use of smaller heat exchangers in fuel cell power systems. In addition, for reformate fuel cell systems, carbon monoxide (CO) tolerance of the stack is less problematic at higher temperatures, which would reduce the size requirements or possibly eliminate the need for some CO clean-up beds in the fuel processor.
New membranes must be developed to enable fuel cell operation at higher temperature ranges and achieve these energy benefits. This is an important R&D target for DOE. The R&D Plan for the High-Temperature Membrane Working Group summarizes the current status, challenges, R&D approaches, and technical targets of high temperature membranes for fuel cells.
Project descriptions from the FY 2007 Annual Progress Report for the Fuel Cell Technologies Office summarize the high temperature membrane R&D activities and accomplishments of FY 2007.
The High Temperature Membrane Working Group has set technical targets and meets twice a year to discuss experimental and computational results.
Information about upcoming meetings will be provided here as it becomes available.
John P. Kopasz, Ph.D.
Argonne National Laboratory
9700 South Cass Avenue, Bldg. 205
Argonne, Illinois 60439
Professor Jim Fenton
Director, Florida Solar Energy Center
Professor, Mechanical, Materials and Aerospace Engineering University of Central Florida
1679 Clearlake Road
Cocoa, Florida 32922-5703