The alkaline fuel cell (AFC) is one of the most developed fuel cell technologies and is the cell that flew Man to the Moon. NASA has used alkaline fuel cells since the mid-1960s, in Apollo-series missions and on the Space Shuttle. AFCs consume hydrogen and pure oxygen producing potable water, heat, and electricity. They are among the most efficient fuel cells, having the potential to reach 70%. ...more on Wikipedia about "Alkaline fuel cell"
A bio-nano generator is a nanoscale electrochemical device, like a fuel cell or galvanic cell, but drawing power from blood glucose in a living body, much the same as how the body generates energy from food. To achieve the effect, an enzyme is used that is capable of stripping glucose of its electrons, freeing them for use in electrical devices. ...more on Wikipedia about "Bio-nano generator"
Direct-methanol fuel cells or DMFCs are a subcategory of Proton-exchange fuel cells where, the fuel, methanol, is not reformed, but fed directly to the fuel cell. ...more on Wikipedia about "Direct-methanol fuel cell"
A fuel cell is an electrochemical device similar to a battery, but differing from the latter in that it is designed for continuous replenishment of the reactants consumed; i.e. it produces electricity from an external fuel supply of hydrogen and oxygen as opposed to the limited internal energy storage capacity of a battery. Additionally, the electrodes within a battery react and change as a battery is charged or discharged, whereas a fuel cell's electrodes are catalytic and relatively stable. ...more on Wikipedia about "Fuel cell"
Molten-carbonate fuel cells (MCFCs) are high-temperature fuel cells, in the range of 600ºC. Their main problem is corrosion, and the need to operate a high-temperature liquid rather than a solid as in the solid-oxide fuel cells. However, they operate at the highest efficiencies of any type fuel cell, including solid oxide fuel cells, proton exchange membrane fuel cells and phosphoric acid fuel cell and are not subject to the high-temperature material issues that affect solid-oxide technology. ...more on Wikipedia about "Molten-carbonate fuel cell"
Phosphoric acid fuel cells (PAFC) are a type of fuel cell that uses liquid phosphoric acid as an electrolyte. The electrodes are made of carbon paper coated with a finely-dispersed platinum catalyst, which make them expensive to manufacture. They are not affected by carbon monoxide impurities in the hydrogen stream. The phosphoric acid solidifies at a very high temperature of 40 °C, making startup very difficult. However, at an operating range of 150 to 200 °C, the expelled water can be converted to steam for air and water heating. Phosphoric acid fuel cells have been used for stationary applications with a combined heat and power efficiency of about 80%, and they continue to dominate the on-site stationary fuel cell market. ...more on Wikipedia about "Phosphoric-acid fuel cell"
A proton exchange membrane is a type of semipermeable membrane, generally made from ionomers. Proton exchange membranes (PEMs) are designed to conduct protons, or rather hydrogen ions, across the membrane, while being impermeable to gasses such as oxygen or hydrogen. This is their essential function when incorporated into a proton exchange membrane fuel cell: separation of reactants and transport of protons. PEMs can be made from either pure polymer membranes or from composite membranes where other materials are imbedded in a polymer matrix. One of the most common and commercially available PEM materials is Nafion which is made by DuPont. While Nafion is an ionomer with a perfluorinated backbone like Teflon, there are many other structural motifs used to make ionomers for proton exchange membranes. Many use polyaromatic polymers while others use partially fluorinated polymers. ...more on Wikipedia about "Proton exchange membrane"
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Proton exchange membrane fuel cells, also known as polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFC), are a type of fuel cell being developed for transport applications as well as for stationary and portable applications. Their distinguishing features include lower temperature/pressure ranges and a special polymer electrolyte membrane. ...more on Wikipedia about "Proton exchange membrane fuel cell"
Solid oxide fuel cells, or SOFC, are intended mainly for stationary applications with an output of 1 kW and larger ( power plants). They work at very high temperatures (some at 1000ºC), and their off-gases can be used to fire a secondary gas turbine to improve electrical efficiency. Efficiency could reach as much as 70% in these hybrid systems. In these cells, oxygen ions are transferred through a solid oxide electrolyte material at high temperature to react with hydrogen on the anode side. Due to the high operating temperature of SOFC's, they have no need for expensive catalyst, which is the case of Proton-exchange fuel cells ( platinum). This means that SOFC's do not get poisoned by carbon monoxide and this makes them highly fuel-flexible. Solid oxide fuel cells have so far been operated on methane, propane, butane, fermentation gas, gasified biomass and paint fumes. However, sulfur components present in the fuel must be removed before entering the cell, but this can easily be done by an active coal bed or a zinc absorbent. ...more on Wikipedia about "Solid-oxide fuel cell"
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