Faradayic ElectroEtching of Stainless Steel Bipolar Plates

Period of Performance: 01/01/2008 - 12/31/2008

$100K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Faraday Technology, Inc.
315 Huls Drive Array
Englewood, OH 45315
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Abstract

Commercialization of Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) fuel cells requires low-cost components, materials, and manufacturing processes. Specifically, the manufacture of the fuel cell¿s bipolar plates utilizes methods that are slow, expensive, and inappropriate for some advanced flow field designs. It is desirable that new manufacturing technologies be developed that enable advanced designs at high volume and low cost. This project will develop and demonstrate an electrochemical etching process that will enable the through-mask etching of stainless steel bipolar plates at high volume and low cost. This technique will enable advanced flow channel designs, not easily attainable using current manufacturing technologies. Phase I will include process development/optimization, equipment design and build, and flow field design.Commercial Applications and other Benefits as described by the awardee: Electrochemical etching processes (for such materials as stainless steels, titanium, and nickel-based alloys) that utilize environmentally friendly electrolytes should have wide applications in a variety of industries, including aerospace, medical, and automotive.