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Keywords:

  • dot matrix fuel cell;
  • inorganic proton conductor;
  • portable electrochemical generator;
  • high-energy microchips;
  • vapor supplying gas mixtures;
  • sol–gel method

Abstract

The power generation properties of a novel dot matrix fuel cell using an inorganic micro-proton conductor were evaluated in dry gas mixtures of hydrogen and oxygen during room-temperature operation. The single dot matrix fuel cell was composed of aggregates of micro-electrolyte dots filling pores arranged in a matrix form on a Teflon or polyimide substrate with Pt/C and Pt catalytic electrodes. Micro-electrolyte dots were prepared by the sol–gel method using titanium phosphorus oxides as the proton conductive hybrid materials. The open-circuit voltage of the single cell became higher when using a small dot diameter and achieved a maximum of 500 mV with an electrolyte dot density of 17 dots/cm2 in the dry gas mixtures during room-temperature operation. This value corresponds to about one-half of the theoretical electromotive force. Moreover, the current density of the single cell increased with the dot diameter such that it grew to 8 mA/cm2 at a dot diameter of 500 µm. As a result, dot matrix fuel cells connected in series and parallel were found to achieve the cell performance of high-energy density such as used by high-energy microchips. © 2012 Institute of Electrical Engineers of Japan. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.