High Density Solid Hydrogen Storage for Long-Duration Soldier Power

Period of Performance: 02/01/2012 - 02/01/2014

$389K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Creare, Inc.
16 Great Hollow Road Array
Hanover, NH 03755
Principal Investigator

Abstract

Providing power for dismounted soldiers on long-duration missions remains a critical technical challenge. Polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells convert hydrogen fuel directly to electric power and offer a lightweight and efficient power source for individual soldiers. However, technology for storing the hydrogen fuel is still too heavy to meet the Army’s mission requirements. We propose to develop a very lightweight, solid hydrogen fuel cartridge based on ammonia borane (AB). Our innovation is a unique packaging and thermal control system that will produce hydrogen on demand through controlled thermal decomposition of AB. This approach can enable solid hydrogen fuel cartridges for individual soldier power systems that meet the Army’s challenging goals for hydrogen storage density. In Phase I we demonstrated the feasibility of our approach by generating hydrogen using a prototypical fuel package and then using data from these tests to design a complete lightweight hydrogen fuel cartridge. In Phase II we will build a complete, prototype hydrogen fuel cartridge and demonstrate its use as a fuel source for a PEM fuel cell.