HYDROCARBON-AIR FUEL CELL
Semi-annual rept. no. 6, 1 Aug-31 Dec 1966
ESSO RESEARCH AND ENGINEERING CO LINDEN NJ GOVERNMENT RESEARCH LAB
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Studies aimed at the development of a direct hydrocarbon-air fuel cell system for moderate temperature and pressure operation indicates that anode electrocatalysis is the key problem area. Research emphasized 1 improving platinum catalyst utilization and 2 developing a non-noble hydrocarbon catalyst. Studies aimed at defining the range of catalytically active non-noble metal-tungsten oxides have shown that a wide variety of metals can produce electrochemically active anodes and cathodes. Most of the first row transition metal-tungsten oxides and magnetic rare earth tungsten bronzes show both anodic and cathodic activity. All of these materials were active as cathodes. This appears to be a general property of the conductive tungsten oxides. These metal tungsten oxygen systems also show promise for use in 275 C pyrophosphoric acid electrolytes. No significant corrosion was observed even through the Fe0.2WO3 could sustain 100 masq cm on oxygen. Supported platinum catalysts continue to show promise of significant hydrocarbon activity improvement. A new Co-Pt on FC- 30 carbon catalyst has shown significant utilization at temperature ranging from 150 to 275 C. For example, a 1.5 mg Ptsq cm electrolyte 13 mils thick yielded 200 masq cm of 0.45 volts polarized on butane 110 mamg Pt in 200 C phosphoric acid.
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