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A distributed gas breather for micro direct methanol fuel cell (μ-DMFC)

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3 Author(s)
De-Sheng Men ; Mech. & Aerosp. Eng. Dept., California Univ., Los Angeles, CA, USA ; Joonwon Kim ; Chang-Jin Kim

This paper introduces a distributed gas breather to remove the gas byproduct (CO2) from the micro direct methanol fuel cell (μDMFC). The concept and device configuration of "distributed breathing" aim to improve the performance of the μDMFC by (1) decreasing flow resistance, (2) increasing the active electrode area, and (3) reducing or possibly eliminating the discrete gas separator. Experimental verification is provided by a prototype breather with microscale hydrophobic breathing holes, which successfully removed CO2 bubbles from a mixture of weak sulfuric acid and sodium bicarbonate aqueous solution. The techniques to fabricate sub-micron hydrophobic breathing holes with good stability, which would enable integration of the breather into the eventual μDMFC system, are discussed.

Published in:

Micro Electro Mechanical Systems, 2003. MEMS-03 Kyoto. IEEE The Sixteenth Annual International Conference on

Date of Conference:

19-23 Jan. 2003