Neah Power Systems, Inc. today described its unique ability to utilize multiple fuel solutions to power methanol-powered fuel cells. The company’s porous silicon design allows for the use of a variety of oxidants and fuels, including oxygen, hydrogen peroxide, and nitric acid, while the anode loop has been run with several concentrations of methanol and formic acid for its fuel.

Danny Wilks, Research Scientist, Neah Power Systems, explained, “All electrochemical cells have two fundamental parts: an anode and a cathode. These electrodes act in much the same way as terminals in a battery. The anode catalyzes a fuel source such as methanol to harvest electrons that are then ‘donated’ to the reaction. The electrons are then transferred to the cathode where an oxidant is catalyzed to accept the donated electrons. The flow of electrons in this reaction is how electricity is generated in an electrochemical cell. On the anode loop, methanol is one of the most energy dense fuels on the market today. Newer and greener methanol manufacturing methods are being developed that help to make methanol one of the more environmentally friendly fuels.”

Chris D’Couto, Neah CEO and President, added, “The power needs of tomorrow call for adaptable and dynamic power solutions that can be tailored to customer needs. Neah continues to research the next generation of fuels and oxidants that will be used to place our patented porous silicon fuel cell technology for these growing markets.”