Oleg Zabluda's blog
Tuesday, July 03, 2012
Current crop of PEM Fuel Cells couldn't successfully compete with constantly improving Li-ion battery...
Current crop of PEM Fuel Cells couldn't successfully compete with constantly improving Li-ion battery for terrestrial applications, due to being too  picky about the fuel. 

Solid Oxide Fuel Cells are better, because it's the oxygen that goes through to the fuel, so fuel can contain not only Hydrogen, but whatever oxidizes, and it runs at high temperatures (600-1000 C), so the fuel can be converted to gas (reformed) right on the cathode.

Moreover, a company called Lilliputian Systems came up with a way to integrate such a fuel cell right on a CMOS wafer, and announced an investment and manufacturing deal with Intel in Nov 2010

They claim that due to much higher temperature, they can use any hydrocarbon fuels, including garbage, just like Mr. Fusion in the "Back to the Future" (it's just burning in atmospheric O2 after all).

This explains why Bender, while being able to work on anything, simply prefers ethanol.


Ironically, the same IEEE Spectrum declared it a loser in Jan 2008:
Loser: Another Fuel-Cell Charger Flunks
Fuel cells look great on paper, but who wants to run a laptop off one?



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