Thursday, December 09, 2004

More patents related to hydrogen economy...

from a press release:

US 6,672,077 and US 6,748,748 are the first patents to be issued from the Nanomix' hydrogen storage portfolio, which also includes several additional pending applications. The patent describes the low temperature storage of hydrogen using novel nanostructured materials including light elements, so as to permit non-chemically-bound low-pressure storage of hydrogen. Typically hydrogen is stored at 20 K, Nanomix technology makes storage possible at temperatures greater than the liquefaction temperature of nitrogen, 77 K. This innovation has the potential to make hydrogen storage much more cost effective and has been successfully prototyped by Nanomix. The system employs a combination of thermal insulation and a cold enclosure for the storage and controlled distribution of hydrogen as a high-energy fuel. This setup largely avoids the storage life limitations, energy penalties, and/or weight penalties associated with other technologies for liquid hydrogen storage as well as high-pressure gas-phase hydrogen storage.

The first claim of the '077 patent recites:

1. A hydrogen storage nanostructure, comprising:

a nanostructured storage material, comprising

at least one light element, wherein the at least one light element is selected from the group consisting of Be, B, N, P, and S, wherein

the nanostructured storage material is adapted to adsorb hydrogen by physisorption.

The patent cites several publications on fullerene compounds which sorb hydrogen:

K. Murata et al., "Pore Structure Of Single-wall Carbon Nanohorn Aggregates", Chemical Physics Letters vol. 331, (Nov. 24, 2000), pp. 14-20.
Y. Ye et al., "Hydrogen Adsorption And Phase Transitions In Fullerite", Applied Physics Letters vol. 77, No. 14, (Oct. 2, 2000), pp. 2171-2173.
Chambers et al., "Hydrogen Storage in Graphite Nanofibers," The Journal of Physical Chemistry B., vol. 102, No. 22, May 28, 1998, pp. 4253-4256.
Dillon et al., "Storage of hydrogen in single-walled carbon nanotubes," Letters to Nature, vol. 386, Mar. 27, 1997, pp. 377-379.
Poirier et al., "Hydrogen adsorption in carbon nanostructures," International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 26, 2001, pp. 831-835.

which in turn are related to early publications on the sorption of hydrogen by lamellar graphite/alkali metal compounds.

The '077 patent cites to 5,653,951 of Nelly Rodriguez and R.T.K. (Terry) Baker.


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