Photo etching offers fuel cell and electrolyzer plate engineers many advantages to combat their design, time, and cost challenges.

About Fuel Cell Plates

Elcon provides high strength and durable photochemically etched fuel cell plates that can withstand extreme environments in your applications. Photo etching offers fuel cell and electrolyzer plate engineers many advantages to combat their design, time, and cost challenges.

Benefits:

  • Burr and stress-free surfaces
  • Multiple channel levels and patterns etched on the plate
  • Increased design flexibility and complexity with no incremental cost
  • Metallurgical properties preserved
  • Rapid prototyping to high volume
  • Dimensional repeatability

How PEM fuel cells work: 

  1. Hydrogen fuel cells use  hydrogen as fuel and oxygen to convert to electricity, with water and heat as by-products.
  2. At the anode, a catalyst causes the hydrogen to split into positive ions and negatively charged electrons. At the cathode, the electrons and positively charged hydrogen ions combine with oxygen to form water, a by-product of the fuel cell.
  3. The protons travel through the membrane, while the electrons flow through the circuit and create an electric current.

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. What materials can you work with?
    • We typically etch plates made from common grades of stainless steel or titanium. Both of these materials are robust and extremely corrosion resistant. For a complete list of materials we can etch, please visit our materials page
  2. Can the plates be bonded?
    • Plates can be bonded together in stack via diffusion bonding, brazing and other techniques.

Photochemical Etching vs Other Methods

There are several benefits to manufacturing fuel cell plates through photochemical etching compared to using other fabrication methods. Unlike stamping, hydroforming or laser cutting, chemical etching imparts no mechanical or thermal stress on the plates, both of which can compromise stack bonding and fluid flow.

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Request a Quote

Our team is here and ready to start talking, whatever your application may be. Request a quote today to send us your thoughts and get your project moving.

 

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