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Using Fuel Cell as a Power Supply for Superconducting Coil

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4 Author(s)
Hinaje, M. ; Res. Group on Electr. Eng., Univ. of Lorraine, Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy, France ; Berger, K. ; Lévȇque, J. ; Davat, B.

Fuel cells are electrochemical energy converters that allow the transformation of the chemical energy of a fuel to electricity through oxido-reduction reaction. The voltage of an elementary cell is usually near 1 V in open circuit and around 0.6 V in nominal conditions of power generation. Fuel cells are then, in essence, low-voltage sources, so that for most practical applications, power management is carried out by electronic converters, allowing in particular the rise of voltage to usual application levels. In this paper, we propose to take advantage of this low voltage for a specific application such as superconducting-coil power supply. The solution proposed here for the generation of the perfectly direct current relies upon a fuel cell fed by hydrogen. The main advantages to be taken from fuel cells operated at very low voltages are autonomy - no supply connected on the grid, ensured continuous operation, together with the electrical quality of the current generated, i.e., free.

Published in:

Applied Superconductivity, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:24 ,  Issue: 6 )