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Sandia National Laboratories has received an Innovation Award from TechConnect, a global technology outreach and development organization, for the development of prototype Hydrocarbon Membranes for Energy and Water Electrochemical Systems. Sandia’s submission placed in the top 15 percent of all submitted technologies ranked by TechConnect.

The membrane may be the key to making hydrogen cars a commercial reality. A major roadblock in the development of hydrogen cars has been the lack of a reliable hydrogen fuel cell that works well in both dry and humid environments. Hydrogen fuel cells most commonly made with polymer electrolyte membrane, which play a crucial function in many energy and water technologies, including energy storage, water electrolysis and purification, and stationary and transportation power systems.

With low projected manufacturing costs, high ion conductivities, reduced cross-over, chemical and thermal stability in both acidic and alkaline environments, Sandia’s membrane technology may lower the cost of many energy-water systems for fuel cells. It also shows superior cross-over performance to other applications with potential to lower operational and maintenance costs.

The lab will be highlighted at the TechConnect National Innovation Summit in Washington, D.C., May 22-26, 2016. Visit Sandia’s Innovation Showcase Booth #629 to learn more.