Fuel Cells

Fuel Cells

Current Technology Challenges and Future Research Needs

1st Edition - October 29, 2012

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  • Author: Noriko Hikosaka Behling
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780444563255
  • eBook ISBN: 9780444563262

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Fuel Cells: Current Technology Challenges and Future Research Needs is a one-of-a-kind, definitive reference source for technical students, researchers, government policymakers, and business leaders. Here in a single volume is a thorough review of government, corporate, and research institutions’ policies and programs related to fuel cell development, and the effects of those programs on the success or failure of fuel cell initiatives. The book describes specific, internal corporate and academic R&D activities, levels of investment, strategies for technology acquisition, and reasons for success and failure. This volume provides an overview of past and present initiatives to improve and commercialize fuel cell technologies, as well as context and analysis to help potential investors assess current fuel cell commercialization activities and future prospects. Crucially, it also gives top executive policymakers and company presidents detailed policy recommendations on what should be done to successfully commercialize fuel cell technologies.

Key Features

  • Provides a clear and unbiased picture of current fuel cell research programs
  • Outlines future research needs
  • Offers concrete policy recommendations


Students, scientists, and engineers at universities, graduate schools, research institutions, and corporate and government officials who are engaged in fuel cell R&D worldwide.  Top government policymakers worldwide, Corporate executives in fuel cell related industries and researchers working at fuel cell related industries worldwide.

Table of Contents

  • Dedication


    Chapter 1. Introduction

    1.1 William Grove Invents the Fuel Cell

    1.2 Fuel Cells: Commercial Success Remains Elusive

    1.3 The Unfulfilled Promise


    Chapter 2. Fuel Cells and the Challenges Ahead

    2.1 What Is A Fuel Cell?

    2.2 Types Of Fuel Cells: Distinct Technologies

    2.3 Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells

    2.4 Direct Methanol Fuel Cells

    2.5 Alkaline Fuel Cells

    2.6 Phosphoric Acid Fuel Cells

    2.7 Molten Carbonate Fuel Cells

    2.8 Solid Oxide Fuel Cells


    Chapter 3. History of Alkaline Fuel Cells

    3.1 Overview

    3.2 Francis T. Bacon Builds The First Alkaline Fuel Cell

    3.3 AFC Development in the United States

    3.4 AFC Development in Europe: Decades of Work With No Significant Consequence….But Some Field Tests Continue

    3.5 AFC Development in Russia: Sustained Effort, But With Little Commercial Success

    3.6 AFC Development in Japan: Limited Activities of No Consequence….But A New Effort Emerges


    Chapter 4. History of Phosphoric Acid Fuel Cells

    4.1 Overview

    4.2 PAFC Development in the United States: 25 Years of Government Programs Fail to Produce a Cost-Competitive PAFC System

    4.3 PAFC Development in Japan

    4.4 PAFC Development in Other Countries: Primarily Test-Operating US and Japanese PAFC Power Plants


    Chapter 5. History of Molten Carbonate Fuel Cells

    5.1 MCFC Effort Starts in the Netherlands in the 1950S

    5.2 MCFC Development in the United States

    5.3 MCFC Development in Japan

    5.4 MCFC Development in Europe

    5.5 MCFC Development in South Korea


    Chapter 6. History of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    6.1 Introduction

    6.2 US Department of Energy Initiates SOFC R&D Program in 1977

    6.3 Japan Launches SOFC Research in Wake of Oil Crisis

    6.4 Europe Restarts SOFC Development in 1986

    6.5 Other Countries

    6.6 Japan Emerges as the Global SOFC Leader; the United States and Europe Follow Behind


    Chapter 7. History of Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells and Direct Methanol Fuel Cells

    7.1 Introduction

    7.2 US National Aeronautics and Space Administration Boosts GE’S PEMFC R&D in the late 1950S

    7.3 Canadian Government Decides to Foster Domestic PEMFC Capabilities in the Early 1980S

    7.4 A Global Fuel Cell Race Begins

    7.5 The Global Fuel Cell Race So Far Fails to Attain Commercial Success


    Chapter 8. Strengths and Weaknesses of Major Government Fuel Cell R&D Programs: Europe, Japan, and the United States

    8.1 Fuel Cell R&D Expenditure: Japan Invests the Most

    8.2 Consistency in Policy and Programs: Japan is the Most Constant and Stable

    8.3 Soundness Of Program Evaluation: US Evaluation Is The Least Valuable

    8.4 Resilience in Industry: Europe is the Least Sturdy

    8.5 Fuel Cell Patenting Activity

    8.6 The Global Fuel Cell Leader Today


    Chapter 9. Policy Recommendations

    9.1 Difficulties of Perfecting Fuel Cell Technology Never Understood

    9.2 Until Recently, Science and Physics too Immature for Fundamental Understanding of Fuel Cell

    9.3 Fuel Cell Knowledge Requires Multiple Scientific Disciplines…But Few Institutions have Interdisciplinary Research Capabilities

    9.4 Fuel Cell Development Requires Three Levels of Research: Basic Research Supported by Applied Research and Product Development

    9.5 Fuel Cell too Valuable to Abandon: Go Back to Basics Now

    9.6 Learning from Past Experience to Plan Future Course of Action

    9.7 Policy Recommendations: Implementation of the National Fuel Cell Development Project




Product details

  • No. of pages: 704
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Elsevier 2012
  • Published: October 29, 2012
  • Imprint: Elsevier
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9780444563255
  • eBook ISBN: 9780444563262

About the Author

Noriko Hikosaka Behling

Noriko Hikosaka Behling
Dr. Noriko Behling graduated from Tokyo University of Education in Japan with a BA in philosophy. As a Fulbright scholar, she studied linguistics at Washington University in St. Louis and the University of Hawaii, where she earned an MA degree. Subsequently, she studied at Kyushu University in Japan and earned a PhD degree in urban and environmental engineering.

She worked for the Central Intelligence Agency as a senior analyst and information officer for 20 years. She produced research papers and current assessments in many policy areas, including defense, science and technology, economic policy, and trade issues. Ms. Behling analyzed functional and technical issues, including program analysis, risk assessment, program cost estimation, and global science and technology developments.

She also worked in the private sector for ten years, providing consulting services and analytic support to the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community in the areas of information technology, nuclear energy, and global environmental technology policy issues, including fuel cell technology, low emission vehicles, and hydrogen energy technology. She assisted the National Security Council to formulate two major R&D policy initiatives implemented by the Department of Energy, the FreedomCar Initiative and the Hydrogen Fuel Initiative.

Affiliations and Expertise

Retired from the US Government. Senior Analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency and CENTRA Technology, Inc.

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