P+E Receives Navy SBIR Award


Power+Energy Inc. Receives New Navy SBIR Award

P+E to develop alternatives for sulfur compatible hydrogen separation membranes.


Power+Energy, Inc. (P+E) has been awarded a new Phase I SBIR contract by the Navy entitled “Hydrogen Separation from a Logistic-Fuel Reformate Stream.” Under this contract P+E will investigate alternatives for developing a Palladium alloy membrane hydrogen separator which can reliably process a reformate feed stream containing from 100 to 400 parts per million of sulfur.
This award is a component of the Navy’s effort to operate ship-service fuel cells with hydrogen from logistic fuels. These standard logistical diesel fuels can contain a wide range of sulfur impurity levels. Fuel cell systems can be damaged by trace quantities of sulfur, so it is critical that a diesel fuel processing system be capable of tolerating and removing the sulfur impurities in the diesel fuel. Historically, efforts have focused on removal of sulfur contamination at the beginning of the fuel processing cycle. These desulfurization processes are both costly and maintenance-intensive and add significant complexity to the overall system. This program is seeking to develop a membrane that will tolerate higher levels of sulfur while reliably delivering hydrogen to the fuel cells with no trace sulfur.
The availability of sulfur-compatible hydrogen separation membranes will offer substantial benefits to a wide range of fuel cell applications in both military and industrial/commercial applications. A major opportunity exists for fuel cell-based auxiliary power units (APU) for all types of vehicles, many of which have diesel engines. The availability of fuel cell-based APUs that can operate with standard diesel fuel will open significant opportunities for the industry. At present, both the complexity of the hydrogen separation and the limited availability of sulfur-free diesel fuel are limiting the implementation of fuel cells for auxiliary power applications. When available, this breakthrough would also enable the use of fuel cells for emergency power that can be fueled with diesel fuel or home heating oil. In the long term these membranes will also enable the use of other renewable, alternative fuels as sources of hydrogen for fuel cells.
About Power+Energy

Power & Energy is headquartered in Pennsylvania, USA. Established in 1993, the company’s mission is to enable the hydrogen economy and promote energy efficiency through the application of micro-channel technologies. The company provides a full range of micro-channel hydrogen purifiers to ultra-high purity users across the U.S., Asia and Europe.

Power & Energy is leading the way to the hydrogen economy with proprietary manufacturing and patented hydrogen purification, separation and generation technologies. Power & Energy’s Micro-Channel palladium-alloy hydrogen purifiers purify any grade of hydrogen to nine-nines purity, meeting the most stringent requirements for semiconductor fabrication processes, including light emitting diode manufacture, solar cell manufacture and the manufacture of other compound and silicon semiconductors. Power & Energy’s Micro-Channel hydrogen purifiers are also ideal for metallurgy, R&D, and instrumentation applications. Power & Energy’s Micro-Channel membrane systems can also be used to efficiently separate hydrogen from reformed fuels and synthesis gas mixtures.
Power & Energy is now applying its hydrogen expertise to the fuel cell vehicle refueling market. Power & Energy has recognized that highly compact, low cost, and efficient hydrogen generators that can convert existing liquid fuels to hydrogen at the refueling station will enable the rapid development of the hydrogen refueling infrastructure that fuel-cell vehicles will require. The company’s expertise in the design and manufacture of micro-channel gas processors provides the basis for this exciting new venture.

For further information, contact Noel Leeson, Power & Energy Inc., 106 Railroad Drive, Ivyland, PA 18974-1449, e-mail sales@powerandenergy.com.