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fuel cells

Chien-Yuan Lin, Joseph E Jakes, Bryon S Donohoe, Peter N Ciesielski, Haibing Yang, Sophie-Charlotte Gleber, Stefan Vogt, Shi-You Ding, Wendy A Peer, Angus S Murphy, Maureen C McCann, Michael E Himmel, Melvin P Tucker, Hui Wei
BACKGROUND: Plant lignocellulosic biomass is an abundant, renewable feedstock for the production of biobased fuels and chemicals. Previously, we showed that iron can act as a co-catalyst to improve the deconstruction of lignocellulosic biomass. However, directly adding iron catalysts into biomass prior to pretreatment is diffusion limited, and increases the cost of biorefinery operations. Recently, we developed a new strategy for expressing iron-storage protein ferritin intracellularly to accumulate iron as a catalyst for the downstream deconstruction of lignocellulosic biomass...
2016: Biotechnology for Biofuels
Ademola Adekunle, Vijaya Raghavan
In a number of energy-poor nations, peel from cassava processing represents one of the most abundant sources of lignocellulosic biomass. This peel is mostly discarded indiscriminately and eventually constitutes a problem to the environment. However, energy can be extracted from this peel in a microbial fuel cell. In this study, the viability of cassava peel extract as a substrate in a single-chamber air cathode microbial fuel cell is demonstrated, and optimum performance conditions are explored. The effects of different pretreatments on the extract are also discussed in the context of observed changes in the internal resistances, conductivity and Coulombic efficiencies...
October 24, 2016: Waste Management & Research
Omer Yehezkeli, Nicholas M Bedford, Eunsol Park, Ke Ma, Jennifer N Cha
There has been active interest to identify new methods to reduce CO2 into usable fuel sources. In this work, we demonstrate two types of photo-electrochemical cells (PECs) that photoreduce CO2 directly to formate in aqueous solutions both in the presence and absence of external bias or additional electron sources. The photocathodes were either a CuFeO2 /CuO electrode or a bilayer of CdTe on NiO, whereas the photoanode was a bilayer of NiOx on CdS. The PECs were characterized by using both electrochemistry and spectroscopy, and the products formed from CO2 reduction were characterized and quantified by using (1) H NMR spectroscopy and ESI-MS...
October 24, 2016: ChemSusChem
Kai Li, Lichao Jia, Xin Wang, Jian Pu, Bo Chi, Jian Li
Ni0.9Fe0.1 alloy-supported solid oxide fuel cells with NiTiO3 (NTO) infiltrated into the cell support from 0 to 4 wt.% are prepared and investigated for CH4 steam reforming activity and electrochemical performance. The infiltrated NiTiO3 is reduced to TiO2-supported Ni particles in H2 at 650 °C. The reforming activity of the Ni0.9Fe0.1-support is increased by the presence of the TiO2-supported Ni particles; 3 wt.% is the optimal value of the added NTO, corresponding to the highest reforming activity, resistance to carbon deposition and electrochemical performance of the cell...
October 24, 2016: Scientific Reports
Haolin Tang, Shichang Cai, Shilei Xie, Zhengbang Wang, Yexiang Tong, Mu Pan, Xihong Lu
A new class of dual metal and N doped carbon catalysts with well-defined porous structure derived from metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) has been developed as a high-performance electrocatalyst for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). Furthermore, the microbial fuel cell (MFC) device based on the as-prepared Ni/Co and N codoped carbon as air cathode catalyst achieves a maximum power density of 4335.6 mW m(-2) and excellent durability.
February 2016: Advanced Science (Weinheim, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany)
G Gupta, S Sharma, P M Mendes
The current study investigated the unique combination of alloying (Pt with Cr) and Nafion stabilisation to reap the benefits of catalyst systems with enhanced catalytic activity and improved durability in PEMFCs. Pt-Cr alloy nanoparticles stabilised with Nafion were chosen in the current study owing to their higher stability in acidic and oxidising media at high temperatures compared to other Pt-transition metal alloys (e.g. Pt-Ni, Pt-Co). Two different precursor : reducing agent (1 : 10 and 1 : 20) ratios were used in order to prepare two different alloys, denoted as Pt-Cr 10 and Pt-Cr 20...
September 15, 2016: RSC Advances
Clara Bien Peek, Daniel C Levine, Jonathan Cedernaes, Akihiko Taguchi, Yumiko Kobayashi, Stacy J Tsai, Nicolle A Bonar, Maureen R McNulty, Kathryn Moynihan Ramsey, Joseph Bass
Circadian clocks are encoded by a transcription-translation feedback loop that aligns energetic processes with the solar cycle. We show that genetic disruption of the clock activator BMAL1 in skeletal myotubes and fibroblasts increased levels of the hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF1α) under hypoxic conditions. Bmal1(-/-) myotubes displayed reduced anaerobic glycolysis, mitochondrial respiration with glycolytic fuel, and transcription of HIF1α targets Phd3, Vegfa, Mct4, Pk-m, and Ldha, whereas abrogation of the clock repressors CRY1/2 stabilized HIF1α in response to hypoxia...
October 19, 2016: Cell Metabolism
Chaoqun Wu, Linghao Liu, Kai Tang, Tao Chen
Direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) is promising as an energy conversion device for the replacement of conventional chemical cell in future, owing to its convenient fuel storage, high energy density and low working temperature. The development of DMFC technology is currently limited by catalyst poison and methanol crossover. To alleviate the methanol crossover, a novel fuel supply system based on ultrasonic atomization is proposed. Experimental investigations on this fuel supply system to evaluate methanol permeation rates, open circuit voltages (OCVs) and polarization curves under a series of conditions have been carried out and reported in this paper...
January 2017: Ultrasonics Sonochemistry
Hoon Taek Chung, Ulises Martinez, Ivana Matanovic, Yu Seung Kim
Rotating disk electrode voltammograms and infrared reflection absorption spectra indicate that the hydrogen oxidation reaction of platinum in 0.1 M tetramethylammonium hydroxide solution is adversely impacted by time-dependent and potential-driven cation-hydroxide-water co-adsorption. Impedance analysis suggests that the HOR inhibition is mainly caused by the hydrogen diffusion barrier of the co-adsorbed tri-layer rather than intuitive catalyst site blocking by the adsorbed cation species. These results give useful insights on how to design ionomeric binders and hydrogen oxidation electrocatalysts for advanced alkaline membrane fuel cells...
October 24, 2016: Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Sabina Besic, Shelley D Minteer
Although enzymes are highly efficient and selective catalysts, there have been problems incorporating them into fuel cells. Early enzyme-based fuel cells contained enzymes in solution rather than immobilized on the electrode surface. One problem utilizing an enzyme in solution is an issue of transport associated with long diffusion lengths between the site of bioelectrocatalysis and the electrode. This issue drastically decreases the theoretical overall power output due to the poor electron conductivity. On the other hand, enzymes immobilized at the electrode surface have eliminated the issue of poor electron conduction due to close proximity of electron transfer between electrode and the biocatalyst...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Ryan J Milcarek, Michael J Garrett, Amrish Baskaran, Jeongmin Ahn
Combustion based power generation has been accomplished for many years through a number of heat engine systems. Recently, a move towards small scale power generation and micro combustion as well as development in fuel cell research has created new means of power generation that combine solid oxide fuel cells with open flames and combustion exhaust. Instead of relying upon the heat of combustion, these solid oxide fuel cell systems rely on reforming of the fuel via combustion to generate syngas for electrochemical power generation...
October 2, 2016: Journal of Visualized Experiments: JoVE
Shan Wang, Changmin Hou, Long Yuan, Mingyang Qu, Bo Zou, Dayong Lu
Perovskite structured rare-earth chromites are one of the most promising families of functional materials in solid oxide fuel cells, multiferroic materials, and sensors. Here, we report a mild hydrothermal method to synthesize DyCrO3 and HoCrO3 monodispersed single crystals. The synthesis conditions, crystal structure, Raman spectra and temperature- and field-dependent magnetic properties were studied. The two samples are indexed to the Pbnm space group. The shapes of the crystals are plates with a narrow particle size distribution in the range of 4-5 μm...
October 21, 2016: Dalton Transactions: An International Journal of Inorganic Chemistry
Dureid Qazzazie, Mohammad Halhouli, Olena Yurchenko, Gerald Urban
The lack of performance of graphene-based electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction (ORR) is a major concern for fuel cells which can be mastered using nanocomposites. This work is highlighted by the optimization of nitrogen(N)-doped graphene/carbon nanotubes (CNTs) nanocomposite's ORR performance examined by galvanostatic measurements in realistically approached glucose half-cells. Obtained results mark an essential step for the development of nanocarbon-based cathodes, as we specifically evaluate the electrode performance under real fuel cell conditions...
October 21, 2016: Nanotechnology
Bingqing Zhang, Shengyang Wang, Wenjun Fan, Weiguang Ma, Zhenxing Liang, Jingying Shi, Shijun Liao, Can Li
The oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) is a key step in H2 -O2 fuel cells, which, however, suffers from slow kinetics even for state-of-the-art catalysts. In this work, by making use of photocatalysis, the ORR was significantly accelerated with a polymer semiconductor (polyterthiophene). The onset potential underwent a positive shift from 0.66 to 1.34 V, and the current was enhanced by a factor of 44 at 0.6 V. The improvement was further confirmed in a proof-of-concept light-driven H2 -O2 fuel cell, in which the open circuit voltage (Voc ) increased from 0...
October 20, 2016: Angewandte Chemie
Kwang Soo Shin, Sangwoo Kim, Sung Kuk Lee
BACKGROUND: Microbial production of oleochemicals has been actively studied in the last decade. Free fatty acids (FFAs) could be converted into a variety of molecules such as industrial products, consumer products, and fuels. FFAs have been produced in metabolically engineered Escherichia coli cells expressing a signal sequence-deficient acyl-CoA thioesterase I ('TesA). Nonetheless, increasing the expression level of 'TesA seems not to be an appropriate approach to scale up FFA production because a certain ratio of each component including fatty acid synthase and 'TesA is required for optimal production of FFAs...
2016: Biotechnology for Biofuels
Katrin Ochsenreither, Claudia Glück, Timo Stressler, Lutz Fischer, Christoph Syldatk
Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) of the ω-3 and ω-6 class (e.g., α-linolenic acid, linoleic acid) are essential for maintaining biofunctions in mammalians like humans. Due to the fact that humans cannot synthesize these essential fatty acids, they must be taken up from different food sources. Classical sources for these fatty acids are porcine liver and fish oil. However, microbial lipids or single cell oils, produced by oleaginous microorganisms such as algae, fungi and bacteria, are a promising source as well...
2016: Frontiers in Microbiology
S Gonzalez-Cortes, D R Slocombe, T Xiao, A Aldawsari, B Yao, V L Kuznetsov, E Liberti, A I Kirkland, M S Alkinani, H A Al-Megren, J M Thomas, P P Edwards
Hydrogen is often described as the fuel of the future, especially for application in hydrogen powered fuel-cell vehicles (HFCV's). However, its widespread implementation in this role has been thwarted by the lack of a lightweight, safe, on-board hydrogen storage material. Here we show that benign, readily-available hydrocarbon wax is capable of rapidly releasing large amounts of hydrogen through microwave-assisted catalytic decomposition. This discovery offers a new material and system for safe and efficient hydrogen storage and could facilitate its application in a HFCV...
October 19, 2016: Scientific Reports
Steven D Karlen, Chengcheng Zhang, Matthew L Peck, Rebecca A Smith, Dharshana Padmakshan, Kate E Helmich, Heather C A Free, Seonghee Lee, Bronwen G Smith, Fachuang Lu, John C Sedbrook, Richard Sibout, John H Grabber, Troy M Runge, Kirankumar S Mysore, Philip J Harris, Laura E Bartley, John Ralph
Angiosperms represent most of the terrestrial plants and are the primary research focus for the conversion of biomass to liquid fuels and coproducts. Lignin limits our access to fibers and represents a large fraction of the chemical energy stored in plant cell walls. Recently, the incorporation of monolignol ferulates into lignin polymers was accomplished via the engineering of an exotic transferase into commercially relevant poplar. We report that various angiosperm species might have convergently evolved to natively produce lignins that incorporate monolignol ferulate conjugates...
October 2016: Science Advances
Chenyi Cai, Min Kuang, Xiling Chen, Hao Wu, Hongtao Ge, Gengfeng Zheng
The development of efficient and robust electrocatalyst has been the central of the solar water splitting-based hydrogen fuel acquisition. In this work, we reported the use of cow milk, with addition of tetraethyl orthosilicate (TEOS) and melamine, for the synthesis of nitrogen-doped mesoporous carbon microspheres. Due to the large surface and enhanced charge transport behavior, the obtained samples enabled low overpotentials and a small Tafel slope toward oxygen evolution reaction, which were close or comparable to the best OER catalysts of carbon materials reported previously...
October 12, 2016: Journal of Colloid and Interface Science
Feng Hu, Hongchao Yang, Changhong Wang, Yejun Zhang, Huan Lu, Qiangbin Wang
Rational design of cost-effective, nonprecious metal-based catalysts with desirable oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) performance is extremely important for future fuel cell commercialization, etc. Herein, a new type of ORR catalyst of Co-N-doped mesoporous carbon hollow sphere (Co-N-mC) was developed by pyrolysis from elaborately fabricated polystyrene@polydopamine-Co precursors. The obtained catalysts with active Co sites distributed in highly graphitized mesoporous N-doped carbon hollow spheres exhibited outstanding ORR activity with an onset potential of 0...
October 18, 2016: Small
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