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Hydrogen and fuel cells experiment


  • Build a fuel cell in order to appreciate practically a range of important chemical and physical principles, such as galvanic cells, energy conversion, energy quality, combustion reactions, water electrolysis and bio-fuels.
  • Crituique the design in order to improve the efficiency of the fuel cell and to accomplish it practically


  • Pre-lab (10%)
  • Lab Report (80%)
  • TA points (10%)

Before coming to lab…

  • Read the lab instructions


As the world’s reserves of fossil fuels are diminishing and our awareness of environmental protection is increasing, we strive to develop alternative ways of energy production. Thus in many countries research into construction of stable and efficient fuel cells has been given high priority. Indeed, President Bush in his January 28th 2003 State of the Union address, proposed a $1.2 billion fuel-cell research and development program.

Fuel cells are used for direction conversion of the energy of combustion reactions to electrical energy. A possible fuel is hydrogen, which can be produced from water in electrolysis plants driven by solar cells or windmills. A future interesting fuel source for operation fuel cells might be “bio-fuels” i.e fuels produced from non-fossil organic material such as methane from biogas plants, alcohol produced by fermentation of sugar or hydrolyzed starch (or, in the not so distant future, perhaps also from enzymatically hydrolyzed cellulose).

Conventional power plants turn approximately 40% of the fuel energy into electricity; we say that the efficiency of the plant is 40%. (Although, in some modern plants surplus heat is reused for district heating thus increasing the actually efficiency somewhat). However, with fuel cells the efficiency of chemical-to-electric energy conversion is unsurpassed, namely about 70% (or even high in some experimental plants).

U.S. energy dependence is higher today than it was during the “oil shock” of the 1970’s, and oil imports are project to increase. Passenger vehicles alone consume 6 million barrels of oil every day, equivalent 85% of oil imports.

  • If just 20% of cars used fuel cells, we could cut oil imports by 1.5 million barrels a day.
  • If every new vehicle sold in the U.S. next year was equipped with a 60kW fuel cell, we would double the amount of the country’s available electricity supply.
  • 10,000 fuel cell vehicles running on non-petroleum feul would reduce oil consumption by 6.98 million gallons per year.

Fuel cells could dramatically reduce urban air pollution, decrease oil imports, reduce the trade deficit and produce American jobs. The U.S. Department of Energy projects that if a mere 10% of automobiles nationwide were powered by fuel cells, regulated air pollutants would be cut by one million tons per year and 60 million tons of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide would be eliminated. DOE projects that the same number of feel cell cars would cut oil imports by 800,000 barrels a day – about 13% of total imports. Since fuel cells run on hydrogen derived from a renewable source, the fuel cell emissions will be nothing but water vapor.

Questions & Answers

so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
Damian Reply
types of nano material
abeetha Reply
I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
many many of nanotubes
what is the k.e before it land
what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
I'm interested in nanotube
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
Ramkumar Reply
what is nano technology
Sravani Reply
what is system testing?
preparation of nanomaterial
Victor Reply
Yes, Nanotechnology has a very fast field of applications and their is always something new to do with it...
Himanshu Reply
good afternoon madam
what is system testing
what is the application of nanotechnology?
In this morden time nanotechnology used in many field . 1-Electronics-manufacturad IC ,RAM,MRAM,solar panel etc 2-Helth and Medical-Nanomedicine,Drug Dilivery for cancer treatment etc 3- Atomobile -MEMS, Coating on car etc. and may other field for details you can check at Google
anybody can imagine what will be happen after 100 years from now in nano tech world
after 100 year this will be not nanotechnology maybe this technology name will be change . maybe aftet 100 year . we work on electron lable practically about its properties and behaviour by the different instruments
name doesn't matter , whatever it will be change... I'm taking about effect on circumstances of the microscopic world
how hard could it be to apply nanotechnology against viral infections such HIV or Ebola?
silver nanoparticles could handle the job?
not now but maybe in future only AgNP maybe any other nanomaterials
I'm interested in Nanotube
this technology will not going on for the long time , so I'm thinking about femtotechnology 10^-15
can nanotechnology change the direction of the face of the world
Prasenjit Reply
At high concentrations (>0.01 M), the relation between absorptivity coefficient and absorbance is no longer linear. This is due to the electrostatic interactions between the quantum dots in close proximity. If the concentration of the solution is high, another effect that is seen is the scattering of light from the large number of quantum dots. This assumption only works at low concentrations of the analyte. Presence of stray light.
Ali Reply
the Beer law works very well for dilute solutions but fails for very high concentrations. why?
bamidele Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Honors chemistry lab fall. OpenStax CNX. Nov 15, 2007 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10456/1.16
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