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An Energy Dense-AI-NaBH4-PEMFC Based Power Generator for Unmanned Undersea Vehicles

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Technical Report,28 Jan 2013,31 Dec 2015

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University of Central Florida/Florida Solar Energy Center Orlando United States

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The main objective of this work is to develop a high-energy density air-independent power generator for UUVs based on a combination of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell PEMFC with a compact hydrogen generator utilizing AI-NaBH4 composite fuel. The conditions for the energy-dense and stable storage of NaBH4 slurries and dense solutions forthe extended period of time 6 months and longer with minimal degradation rate 0.05-0.35 per month have been determined. The effect of seawater on the kinetics of NaBH4 and AI-NaBH4 hydrolysis has been elucidated. Seawater minerals especially, Mi showed catalytic effect on NaBH4 hydrolysis. The catalytic effect of AI hydrolysis products on the NaBH4 hydrolysis was studied. Continuous stable production of a stream of high-purity99.999, wout water vapor hydrogen by AI-NaBH4 hydrolysis in water and seawater at the temperature range of 90C has been demonstrated. A breadboard power generation unit consisting of NaBH4 delivery system, AI-NaBH4 hydrolysis reactor and PEMFC has been designed, assembled and performance tested. The units performance was comparable to that of PEMFC powered by high-purity H2 from a tank, which points to the high efficiency of the developed power generation system.

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