The basics of our HT-PEM fuel cells
The specific fuel cell system that we’ve developed at SerEnergy is called an HT-PEM (High Temperature Polymer Electrolyte Membrane) system. It has a number of key benefits compared to other systems.
The benefits of the HT-PEM include:
- high system effiency
- Less than 4% of fuel cell power needed for balance of components
- CO tolerance of 3% (or 30,000 ppm) CO
- Ease of cooling
- No need for humidification
If you’re interested in the details, read below.
Better performance and less cleanup
The HT-PEM operates at temperatures of 150-180 degrees Celsius. The high temperature means that the fuel cell can use hydrogen with a higher CO concentration compared to other systems.
Accordingly, this has a positive effect on system performance and at the same time reduces the need for gas cleanup. The method facilitates the use of hydrogen reformate from cheap and easy to handle energy-carriers such as methanol, ethanol and diesel.
High tolerance to CO
The HT-PEM fuel cell can tolerate up to 3% (30,000 ppm) CO and up to 20 ppm of sulfur without permanent degradation.
In comparison, an LT-PEM (low temperature) fuel cell normally tolerates less than 30 ppm CO and less than 1 ppm of sulfur.
Due to the high operating temperature, usually, a PrOx reactor after the reformer is not needed. PrOx reactors are expensive and bulky, and they significantly lower system efficiency.
The result is that very simple, lightweight and inexpensive reformers can be used to produce hydrogen from a broad range of energy-carriers, including the choices listed above.
No need for humidification
Where an LT-PEM system needs humidifiers, air compressor and a radiator to operate, the HT-PEM is much simpler by comparison.
Thus, our fuel cell system has one of the highest efficiencies in the market. Less than 4% of fuel cell power output is used for the balance of plant components, where most other systems have an energy waste of approximately 10-20% of the fuel cell output, just to achieve operational status.
Partly due to the low parasitic losses, we’ve achieved fuel cell system efficiencies of up to 57%.
This is what we call the Power of Simplicity.