Fueling non-fossil energy research

Dn Gervasio's team at Center for Applied NanoBioscience at Arizona State University is set to receive a $1.5m grant from the Department of Energy to develop new fuel cells for renewable energy and the so-called hydrogen economy. The funding will allow the team to improve the efficiency of their fuel cell designs significantly and circumvent the problem of excess heat generation. By designing a membrane that operates at high temperatures (a medium oven setting of 120 Celsiua), Gervasio and colleagues want to reduce both the amount of heat management needed to operate the fuel cell and its overall size, weight and costs. The improved fuel cells will enable the technology to move into cars, homes, and remote power facilities where the energy input from renewable sources such as solar and wind will be more effectively utilized.