Thermal transpiration based pumping and power generation

Thomas S. Welles, Ryan J. Milcarek, Amrish Baskaran, Jeongmin Ahn, Paul D. Ronney

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


This paper involves integrated power generation and thermal transpiration pumping to obtain combined thermal and electrical energy generation using hydrocarbons by employing Single Chamber Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SCSOFCs) for energy conversion. This combines results achieved through previous work on thermal transpiration based pumping and introduce low temperature SOFCs to generate power. This paper examines low temperature ignition (70°C) using catalysts and outlines the fabrication procedures for low temperature SOFCs. The entire process is carried out inside a cube with edges of 3 cm called the combustor. The combustor was successfully applied in a self-sustaining gas pump system having no moving parts and using storable hydrocarbon fuel. Low temperature cells have been fabricated using Samaria-Doped-Ceria (SDC) as the electrolyte, a cermet mixture of nickel and SDC (Ni-SDC) as the anode and Ba0.5Sr0.5Co0.8Fe0.2O3 (BSCF) as the cathode. Such cells have produced power densities of 420 mW/cm2 at 550°C. Motivated by these results high-purity Gadolinia-Doped-Ceria (GDC) as demonstrated by S. Zha is being investigated which increases the electrolyte conductivity, resulting in better performance under lower temperature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - 2017
Event10th U.S. National Combustion Meeting - College Park, United States
Duration: Apr 23 2017Apr 26 2017


Other10th U.S. National Combustion Meeting
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityCollege Park


  • Gas pump
  • Miniature power generator
  • Solid oxide fuel cell
  • Thermal transpiration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Mechanical Engineering


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