Fuel cell breakthrough

Altair International Inc. announces that its unique, proprietary technology the company appears to have solved the material mismatch problem for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC). The company can use its 20-nanometer Yttria Stabilized Zirconia (YSZ) to form the electrolyte, and using the same process with different thermal and chemical controls, can also make the substrates for the anode and cathode from YSZ containing the conductors needed for both elements. The electrolyte is a dense material permeable only to oxygen ion transfer; the substrate materials are 50 to 55% porous. One of the major problems with SOFC’s is a mismatch between the anode and cathode substrate material and the material in the electrolyte. After several heating and cooling cycles the difference in thermal expansion coefficients cause the materials to break apart destroying the fuel cell. Since all components in the Altair Cell are made of the majority of the same material, there is little difference in thermal expansion between the anode, the electrolyte and the cathode. All units will have similar thermal expansion coefficients and other properties.

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