campus wide alert

College News

Live Fuel Cell Demonstration at Catawba Achieves Record Performance

March 27, 2017

Category: Academics, Chemistry, Events, Faculty, Students


Catawba_Demo_Photo3.png
 Pozvonkov with Dr. Carol Miderski and Dr. Yu Choong Soo

Fuel cells were tested with a hydrogen gas source in a Catawba College chemistry lab before an audience of professors, students, energy experts, and local government leaders on Friday, March 17.

The tests resulted in a record performance in producing electricity from a hydrogen fuel cell.

The fuel cells, manufactured by Fuel Cell Enabling Technologies (FCET), demonstrated the ability to produce emission-free electricity at 57 degrees F (very far below the industry standard for its type of 1,100 to 1,650 degrees F). In a concurrent test, FCET also operated a second fuel cell at about 1,100 degrees F and with higher electricity production at that higher temperature.

Catawba_Demo_Photo_4.pngFCET expects to manufacture its fuel cells at costs comparable to current solar cells and dramatically lower than current fuel cell providers. The novel, patent-protected design eliminates the need for high-cost materials and exotic manufacturing techniques in use by current industry leaders. The fuel cells are expected to operate at unprecedented hydrogen efficiency rates: converting hydrogen to electricity at greater than 70 percent.

Pending future funding opportunities, FCET plans to begin mass producing its fuel cell modules in 2018. The company is considering locating the plant in Salisbury/Rowan County, North Carolina.

FCET Inc.'s fuel cell is called the POZ Cell™ in honor of its chief inventor, Dr. Mike Pozvonkov.