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Fibretech Offer New Fibre Range in Fuel Cell Applications

13 August 2004

With the push for alternative fuels gaining momentum, UK Fibre producer Fibretech are releasing a range of new fibre based products that are suited to applications in fuel cell technologies.

Fibretech CEO, Mr. Peter Rooney stated, “Fibretech possess unique Rapid Solidification technology which we have been using for many years to produce a range of high performance metal fibres. We have now applied this technology to the field of fuel cells and have produced amorphous, semi-amorphous and fine-crystalline alloys for porous components together with micron-size fibres, a new alternative to powders in the field of hydrogen storage”.

Fibretech's new porous media with porosities between 50-95% for fuel cell applications offer:
Low pressure drop
High-temperature stability
High heat transfer
Low/No attrition
Improved Catalysis
Successful wash-coating
Optimised compositions
Recyclability

Unlike other membranes, Fibretech's product provides a labyrinthine structure, achieving a quicker, more efficient hydrogen/air mix, within a smaller volume, saving weight and space without sacrificing efficiency.

Membrane fibres are joined by welding, brazing or sintering, depending on the required membrane flexibility and to ensure durability and therefore a consistent performance long-term. Similarly, Fibretech membranes can be welded, brazed or sintered to other adjacent components to reduce manufacturing costs.

Membranes can also be pre-oxidised to enhance the adhesion of any washcoats and catalytic coatings, to ensure long-term efficiency.

As a low-cost alternative to the hydrogen storage metallic powders currently used, Fibretech can also manufacture Hydrogen storage alloys, e.g. 60Ni30LaFeBZn by Rapid Solidification. This technology produces short, fine and reusable fibres.

Such fibres will handle and fill like powders, but form a more open structure for better hydrogen flow and thereby avoid blockages, offering a number of additional benefits.

While Fibretech has only recently started offering products for fuel cell applications, they have already built up significant expertise and are also able to offer consultancy services to assist customers to design new specifications.

“To compliment our range of products and consultancy services for the fuel cell field, Fibretech also offer full R&D, Pilot Plant, Pre-Production and Production facilities from its premises in Nottingham UK. We are also looking for companies to partner with to further develop fuel cell technologies” stated Peter Rooney.