The Problem: The polymer exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) is one of the most promising of all emerging fuel cell technologies. This technology is being developed for transport applications as well as for stationary and portable applications. There are two major problems hindering its implementation and commercial success: one is the high cost of existing alternatives and the other is the effectiveness of the fuel cell membrane in facilitating the reaction. There is a tremendous need for membranes with increased durability and decreased production costs. The Technology Solution: Recognizing that a more effective fuel cell membrane could revolutionize the fuel cell industry researchers at the University of Tennessee have developed a cross-linked polycyclohexadiene (PCHD) membrane. Through this novel cross-linking technique researchers have been able to far exceed previous durability and temperature limits. The resulting membranes are superior to the industry standard in proton conductivity mechanical flexibility and thermal stability. They are highly resistant to chemical degradation and in the lab production costs are only 7% of the current industry standard Nafion®.
•Accelerate total market demand for fuel cell applications by providing a much lower cost and more highly durable fuel cell membrane •Be the first to market a superior fuel cell membrane for the growing applications of fuel cell technology •Very flexible membranes and with mechanical integrity and thermal stability •Cost of membrane is about 7% that of Nafion with higher proton conductivity than Nafion