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PROTON EXCHANGE MEMBRANE ELECTROLYSIS USING WATER VAPOR AS A FEEDSTOCK

United States Patent Application

20130092549
A1
View the Complete Application at the US Patent & Trademark Office
A light-driven electrolytic cell that uses water vapor as the feedstock and that has no wires or connections whatsoever to an external electrical power source of any kind. In one embodiment, the electrolytic cell uses a proton exchange membrane (PEM) with an IrRuO.sub.x water oxidation catalyst and a Pt black water reduction catalyst to consume water vapor and generate molecular oxygen and a chemical fuel, molecular hydrogen. The operation of the electrolytic cell using water vapor supplied by a humidified carrier gas has been demonstrated under varying conditions of the gas flow rate, the relative humidity, and the presence or absence of oxygen. The performance of the system with water vapor was also compared to the performance when the device was immersed in liquid water.
Spurgeon, Joshua M. (Pasadena, CA), Lewis, Nathan S. (La Canada, CA), Marcus, Philip Stephen (Alameda, CA)
CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY (Pasadena CA)
13/ 437,812
April 2, 2012
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY FUNDED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT [0002] This invention was made with government support under DE-SC0004993/T-105066 awarded by the Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in the invention.