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Fuel cell membrane hydration and fluid metering

United States Patent

5,998,054
December 7, 1999
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
A hydration system includes fuel cell fluid flow plate(s) and injection port(s). Each plate has flow channel(s) with respective inlet(s) for receiving respective portion(s) of a given stream of reactant fluid for a fuel cell. Each injection port injects a portion of liquid water directly into its respective flow channel in order to mix its respective portion of liquid water with the corresponding portion of the stream. This serves to hydrate at least corresponding part(s) of a given membrane of the corresponding fuel cell(s). The hydration system may be augmented by a metering system including flow regulator(s). Each flow regulator meters an injecting at inlet(s) of each plate of respective portions of liquid into respective portion(s) of a given stream of fluid by corresponding injection port(s).
Jones; Daniel O. (Glenville, NY), Walsh; Michael M. (Fairfield, CT)
Plug Power, L.L.C. (Latham, NY)
08/ 899,262
July 23, 1997
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT RIGHTS The Government of the United States of America has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC02-94CE50389 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy.