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Scientists of the Heinrich-Heine-University developed a rugged low-cost gas detector.
The concept of detection based on the specific light emission of compounds excited electronically by an electric arc. The detection enables a wide range of measurments starting from pure gases down to gas traces (<1 ppm). Signals are achieved in tenths of seconds. The detector is always avaible for recording signals since a recreation time for the measuring system is not required. The setup can operate in harsh environments and is for instance insensitive against chosen temperatures, temperature changes or the degree of humidity.
At present, the invention is primarily concerned with monitoring operational states of fuel cells and appearing degradation processes in MEAs by detecting either nitrogen in the hydrogen flow or hydrogen within the cathode flow field. Spectral separation of the hydrogen signal and the nitrogen signals from accompanying signals is simply carried out by optical filters.
Keywords: Detector, Trace Gas, Hydrogen, Nitrogen, fuel cell, Arc, gas detector, optical filter, measure, gas, spectrograph
The method provides the opportunity to measure a variety of different gases and can therefore be considered as a tool to inspect and pursue technical processes in which gases are involved. This is easily realized by inserting properly selected optical filters or substituting optical filters by a mini-spectrograph.
On behalf of the Heinrich-Heine-University of Düsseldorf, PROvendis offers interested companies the opportunity to obtain a licence for using the presented technology or for continuing the development of the method.
Granted US Patent und EP patent application, DE application for hydrogen detection.
H. Bettermann, P. Fischer, A. Reichelt, M. Labus: On-line Gas Measurements within PEM Fuel Cell Flow Fields by Electric Arc Emission Spectroscopy and Raman Spectroscopy, Proccedings of the European Fuel Cell Forum, B1203, 2011.
H. Bettermann, P. Fischer, A. Reichelt, M. Labus: On-line Gas Measurements within PEM Fuel Cell Flow Fields by Electric Arc Emission Spectroscopy, Proceedings of the ASME 2011, 9th Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology Conference, ESFuelCell2011-54781, 2011.
H. Bettermann, A. Reichelt: On-Line Gas Measurements from PEM Fuel Cell Flow Fields by Electric Arc Emission Spectroscopy, ECS Transactions, 42,155, 2012.