Nano Aluminium Offers Fuel Cells on Demand – Just Add Water

By David Hambling – Re-Blogged From New Scientist

The accidental discovery of a novel aluminium alloy that reacts with water in a highly unusual way may be the first step to reviving the struggling hydrogen economy. It could offer a convenient and portable source of hydrogen for fuel cells and other applications, potentially transforming the energy market and providing an alternative to batteries and liquid fuels.

“The important aspect of the approach is that it lets you make very compact systems,” says Anthony Kucernak, who studies fuel cells at Imperial College London and wasn’t involved with the research. “That would be very useful for systems which need to be very light or operate for long periods on hydrogen, where the use of hydrogen stored in a cylinder is prohibitive.”

Refuelling hydrogen vehicle
Hydrogen could provide an alternative to battery power

Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty

New Hybrid System Design Could Double Coal-Plant Efficiency

By Anthony Watts – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Combining gasification with fuel-cell technology could boost efficiency of coal-powered plants

This illustration depicts a possible configuration for the combined system proposed by MIT researchers. At the bottom, steam (pink arrows) passes through pulverized coal, releasing gaseous fuel (red arrows) made up of hydrogen and carbon monoxide. This fuel goes into a solid oxide fuel cell (disks near top), where it reacts with oxygen from the air (blue arrows) to produce electricity (loop at right). CREDIT Jeffrey Hanna

This illustration depicts a possible configuration for the combined system proposed by MIT researchers. At the bottom, steam (pink arrows) passes through pulverized coal, releasing gaseous fuel (red arrows) made up of hydrogen and carbon monoxide. This fuel goes into a solid oxide fuel cell (disks near top), where it reacts with oxygen from the air (blue arrows) to produce electricity (loop at right). CREDIT Jeffrey Hanna

Continue reading