Minature fuel cells--not there yet, but.... - RC Groups
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Apr 18, 2001, 06:01 PM
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qadsan's Avatar
This technology looks very promising, even for RC applications. If you believe some of the literature about Micro Fuel cell technology, then maybe we'll be looking at 1+ hours of flight time instead of the 5-10 minutes many of us now have.

Here's a quote from a company called Manhattan Scientifics who is developing Micro Fuel Cells.

"MicroFuel Cells may eventually obsolete small batteries. Better, smaller, less-costly, environmentally safe, and much more efficient, the patented technologies of the methanol-based MicroFuel Cell are expected to drive a digital cellular telephone on standby for 6 months as opposed to 2 weeks with lithium ion batteries. In addition, the MicroFuel Cell will, when developed, provide 1 week of talk time instead of the current 5 hours that lithium ion battery-powered cell phones now provide."

If you want to read more about this technology, you can go to their web site and poke around. Manhattan Scientifics is also traded on the Nasdaq OTCBB under the symbol MHTX.OB and it closed today at 67 cents for anyone interested.

Pictures of Micro Fuel Cells http://www.mhtx.com/novars/graphics/photos/hand.jpg http://www.mhtx.com/novars/graphics/photos/P1010047.jpg

[This message has been edited by qadsan (edited 04-18-2001).]
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Apr 18, 2001, 06:03 PM
jrb's Avatar
If we use a fuel cell, would we evolve back to a slimer?
Apr 18, 2001, 06:13 PM
Senior Member
10 watts and 8 volts? Well, thats about 1.25 amps. I dunno how much this thing weighs, but thats a long way short of balistic climbs!

Seriously, though. This sounds great, but not for us just yet!. I can see plenty of applications in less demanding roles for now, but it'll be a while before we'd use it in high drain applications like Leccy flight. This does give us some idea of how far they are from the fuel cell highway car, though. 1.25 amps? Well, thats half of a panel light ;-D.
Apr 18, 2001, 07:02 PM
What's a Member??
Think of slowflyers/parkflyers. Some only pull one amp and if the fuel cell is not much bigger than a matchbox it should give veeeeeeeeeery long flights unless it is really heavey.
Apr 18, 2001, 07:11 PM
Motors beat engines!
You guys are missing an obvious use.
Inflight recharging. Assuming they don't weigh too much, pak maybe two of them into a sp 400 model and get some really improved flight times. Instead of your batts putting out say 6 amps at high speed, they'de only have to do 1/2 that.
Sounds like a duration doubler to me.

Dean in Milwaukee
Apr 18, 2001, 08:10 PM
Radix malorum est cupiditas
radix2's Avatar
I don't know about you guys, but super duration (flying) just doesn't turn me on...
Apr 18, 2001, 09:34 PM
Official Boat Bum
Eddie P's Avatar
Super duration does turn me on as I'd turn it into a super diration of a normally 2 minute flight into a 4 minute flight!
Apr 18, 2001, 11:17 PM
Festina Lente
realdeal's Avatar
If they can be run in parallel then the current draw could be increased. I'd like to know the weight of these micro fuel cells. If they are light enough, why not run 10 or 20 at a time?

Apr 19, 2001, 01:52 AM
Senior Member
sguty's Avatar

Minature fuel cells--not there yet, but....

Check out: http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/ne...709345,00.html
for a pretty interesting announcement of fuel cell/solar cell matchups for cell phones, camcorders, and the like. The unit they talk about only provides 10 watts at 8 volts, but it's 'not much bigger than a matchbox.'
I'm sure we're going to have to wait a while for derivatives of this technology to reach the hobby markets at affordable pricing, but the technology definitely looks interesting.

Steve Guty

[This message has been edited by sguty (edited 04-18-2001).]
Apr 20, 2001, 01:29 AM
Senior Member
sguty's Avatar
different version of the story with a few additional details on the cell structure: http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/ne...709713,00.html
see the last two paragraphs. This demo unit was set up in series to get the 8 volts, could have just as easily been done in parallel for more current. Would seem that a single hydride-based storage unit could service a variable number of fuel cell components. Looks like we'd have to re-introduce the concept of the fuel tank to fly these puppies

Steve Guty
Apr 20, 2001, 07:36 AM
Electrics rule
risto's Avatar
I have seen a picture of the prototype of German R/C company Graupner model car with fuel cell.

Apr 20, 2001, 05:32 PM
Registered User
jas_Qfix's Avatar
Does it mean slimmie are BACK?!!
Apr 20, 2001, 05:45 PM
Function Over Form
BillH's Avatar
Hey they are great, but none of you mentioned the cost.
I wont be surprised if that little matchbox fuel cell costs over 200$
Apr 21, 2001, 08:51 AM
Electrics rule
risto's Avatar
About Graupner, what I was talking about, noticed they have one DOC about it on the web: http://www.graupner.de/downloads/All...toffzellen.doc

Apr 21, 2001, 10:44 PM
Senior Member
sguty's Avatar
Danke, Risto! A good reason to brush up on my technical German (as well as a reason to play with the various Web translation services)
The links at the end are sehr interessant, ich glaube.

Steve Guty

[This message has been edited by sguty (edited 04-21-2001).]

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