Patents Examined by Donald L. Walton
  • Patent number: 5043232
    Abstract: Heat exchanger 4 operates in counterflow relationship to cool reformed gas and to heat raw gas during operation with gaseous raw fuel feed. It also operates in counterflow relationship when preheating the system while recirculating inert gas. This same heat exchanger 4 operates in parallel flow relationship when liquid raw fuel is to be vaporized. Only one heat exchanger is required while avoiding cracking and fouling in the heat exchanger.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 27, 1991
    Assignee: International Fuel Cells Corporation
    Inventors: Michael B. Landau, Yasar B. Tanrikut
  • Patent number: 5043234
    Abstract: In rechargeable, electrochemical cells, oxygen may evolve on charge, overcharge or any reversal of polarity. The invention concerns an auxiliary, electrochemical, transfer electrode to catalyze the recombination of such oxygen with the anode mass. The auxiliary electrode may comprise a porous carbon bonded with PTFE, or it may comprise a zinc gel having graphite particles and/or metal-plated zinc particles--where the metal that plates the zinc particles may be copper, or may be any of cobalt, cadmium, nickel, or silver. The auxiliary electrode for rectangular electrodes as used in flat plate or jelly roll cells may have the catalytically active material PTFE bonded to the current collector. The cell is generally one having a zinc anode, a metal oxide cathode (usually manganese dioxide), and an aqueous alkaline electrolyte (usually potassium hydroxide) contacting both anode and cathode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 27, 1991
    Assignee: Battery Technologies Inc.
    Inventors: Klaus Tomantschger, Karl Kordesch, Erkut Oran
  • Patent number: 5041344
    Abstract: A fuel cell cooling device includes a plurality of plate-like fuel cell units arranged in a vertical stack and having singly interspersed therein cooling plates. A main coolant pipe supplies coolant at a pressure above the saturation point thereof to the cooling plates through corresponding inlet cooling pipes. A throttle is provided in each inlet cooling pipe to produce a pressure drop such that coolant entering a cooling plate is at a pressure below the saturation point thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 20, 1991
    Assignee: Fuji Electric Corporate Research and Development Ltd.
    Inventors: Tomoyoshi Kamoshita, Toshio Hirota, Osamu Yamamoto, Kaoru Kondou, Takashi Ujile
  • Patent number: 5037712
    Abstract: A method is described for forming a solid electrolyte comprising a polymeric network structure containing an ionically conducting liquid for use in solid state electrochemical cells which comprises forming a mixture of a crosslinkable polysiloxane or a crosslinkable polyethylene oxide, an ionically conducting liquid, and an ionizable ammonium or alkali metal salt, and subjecting said mixture to actinic radiation to thereby crosslink said crosslinkable polysiloxane or crosslinkable polyethylene oxide to form a solid matrix through which said ionically conducting liquid interpenetrates to provide continuous paths of high conductivity in all directions throughout said matrix.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 6, 1991
    Assignee: Ultracell, Inc.
    Inventors: Dale R. Shackle, Mei-Tsu Lee
  • Patent number: 5034291
    Abstract: In accordance with the present invention, an electrochemical cell is disclosed comprising a metal oxide cathode; an anode/electrolyte mixture which contains a zinc anode material and an aluminum compound additive as an source of aluminum ions (e.g., an aluminum salt). The anode/electrolyte mixture may also contain a source of sulfate ions (e.g., a metal sulfate). The anode/electrolyte mixture can also include a suitable carrier (e.g., gelling agent, buffer) for admixing the various components of the mixture.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 16, 1989
    Date of Patent: July 23, 1991
    Assignee: Rayovac Corporation
    Inventor: Robert J. Jacus
  • Patent number: 5032473
    Abstract: There is disclosed an electrochemical cathode for an electrochemical cell comprised of a current collecting layer or substrate having at least one side thereof to a layer of a nonwoven conductive fibrous web, preferably of conductive carbon fibers, impregnated with a mixture of carbon particles, carbon fibers of a length of less than about 1/8" and a nonfibrous polymeric substance, and optionally with a hydrophobic microporous film or layer disposed on the layer of the nonwoven conductive fibrous web as well as the product produced thereby.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 27, 1990
    Date of Patent: July 16, 1991
    Assignee: Alupower, Inc.
    Inventor: William H. Hoge
  • Patent number: 5030526
    Abstract: An auxiliary battery having a casing divided by a partition member, defines a first compartment, for initial receipt of an electrolytic medium, and a second compartment for subsequent receipt of the electrolytic medium. A valve assembly is disposed within the partition member to selectively pass the electrolytic medium into the second compartment, into contact with electrodes disposed therein, enabling the generation of an electrical current when desired.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 3, 1990
    Date of Patent: July 9, 1991
    Assignee: Richards-Braswell Research Corp.
    Inventor: Richard R. Braswell
  • Patent number: 5030523
    Abstract: A secondary electrochemical cell is made by(i) assembling a solid state electrochemical cell having an anode containing an alkali metal such as lithium as active anode material; a solid alkali metal ion conducting electrolyte, for example a polymer electrolyte comprising a complex of a solid polymer (e.g. poly(ethylene oxide)) and an alkali metal salt (e.g. LiClO.sub.4), which polymer is capable of forming donor-acceptor type bonds with alkali metal ions; and a cathode containing manganese (IV) oxide as active cathode material; and(ii) discharging the cell under conditions, e.g. of elevated temperature, such that the cathode material is transformed in situ into a rechargeable cathode material which may, for example be LiMn.sub.2 O.sub.4.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 1989
    Date of Patent: July 9, 1991
    Assignee: United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority
    Inventors: Robin J. Neat, Raymond J. Powell
  • Patent number: 5028498
    Abstract: The invention refers to a fuel cell electrode for oxidation of preferably methanol in a fuel cell with acid electrolyte. The electrocatalytically active material comprises known noble metal catalysts such as mixtures of platinum and ruthenium which have been fortified with lead or lead compounds added in this connection in a large quantity so that the addition of lead or lead compounds is above a concentration around 5 mg Pb/cm.sup.2. A suitable amount is 5-10 mg Pb/cm.sup.2. Fuel cell electrodes of this kind can also be used for other fuels for instance hydrogen containing carbon monixide in acid electrolytes up to around 250.degree. C.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 1990
    Date of Patent: July 2, 1991
    Inventor: Olle B. Lindstrom
  • Patent number: 5024907
    Abstract: A solid electrolyte tube for sodium sulfur cells, having an outer surface of a roughness defined by an arithmetical mean deviation of the profile (R.sub.a) of not exceeding 2.0 .mu.m and a maximum height of the profile (R.sub.max) of not exceeding 15 .mu.m, is produced by leveling the outer surface of the solid electrolyte tube in a state of green body, bisque fired and calcined body, or fired body, by means of a finishing apparatus such as a centerless grinding machine, external cylindrical grinding machine, lathe, or the like. The solid electrolyte tube having a smooth and even surface can be prevented from crack formation due to local concentration of Na ion, S, sodium polysulfide and thermal stress thereon, so that it can improve durability and reliability.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 1989
    Date of Patent: June 18, 1991
    Assignees: The Tokyo Electric Co., NGK Insulators, Ltd.
    Inventors: Masaaki Ohshima, Akira Kobayashi, Senji Atsumi, Hiromi Shimada
  • Patent number: 5024905
    Abstract: Disclosed are a platinum alloy electrocatalyst having high activity and a long life comprising an electrically conductive carrier and dispersed in, and deposited on it, a platinum-iron-cobalt-copper quaternary ordered alloy composed of 40 to 70 atomic % of platinum, 9 to 27 atomic % of iron, 9 to 27 atomic % of cobalt and 9 to 27 atomic % of copper, and an electrode for an acid electrolyte fuel cell which electrode comprises the platinum alloy electrocatalyst, a water-repellent binder and a conductive and acid-resistant supporting member, the electrocatalyst and the water-repellent binder being bonded to.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 1990
    Date of Patent: June 18, 1991
    Assignee: N. E. Chemcat Corporation
    Inventors: Takashi Itoh, Katsuaki Katoh
  • Patent number: 5023152
    Abstract: In a fuel cell assembly, each cell is disposed inside a fuel flow passage or an oxygen-containing gas flow passage. A lower end portion of the cell is inserted into a recess defined in a partition wall sectioning between the fuel flow passage or a fuel feed passage and the oxygen-containing gas feed passage, while an upper end portion of the cell is insertible into and withdrawable from a further partition wall sectioning between the fuel flow passage or the oxygen-containing gas passage and an exhaust passage. In a further fuel cell assembly also disclosed, each cell is disposed inside a fuel flow passage or an oxygen-containing gas flow passage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 1990
    Date of Patent: June 11, 1991
    Assignee: Osaka Gas Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Kousuke Akagi
  • Patent number: 5023153
    Abstract: A solid electrode in an electrolytic cell for rapid incorporation and exclusion of ions wandering to and from the electrode by way of an electrolyte with a minimum of voltage loss, in particular for a fuel cell, a high-performance battery, an electrochrome sign display unit or an electro-chemical storage element. The electrode comprises a structure having a higher electrical conductivity for electrons or holes than for the ions, and wherein the concentration of the electrons or holes movable within said electrode is lower than the concentration of the ions movable within the electrode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 5, 1989
    Date of Patent: June 11, 1991
    Assignee: Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Forderung der Wissenschafter e.V.
    Inventor: Werner Weppner
  • Patent number: 5019467
    Abstract: A thin primary cell formed with a combination of a positive current collection layer, a positive active layer, a solid polyelectrolyte layer and a thin metallic film layer which are successively laminated onto an insulating material. Since this thin primary cell employs a solid polyelectrolyte as an electrolyte, it is not only free from liquid leakage but also formable on a film or sheet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 1989
    Date of Patent: May 28, 1991
    Assignee: Kimoto & Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yasuo Fujiwara
  • Patent number: 5019468
    Abstract: A sheet type storage battery and a printed wiring board containing the sheet type storage battery. The sheet type storage battery comprises a negative electrode, a solid electrolyte layer, a positive electrode layer which are laminated in this order, and a thermoplastic resin film laminated on at least one of the surfaces of said positive and negative electrode layers, which is extendible and weldable by an ultrasonic welding operation. The printed wiring board includes a base plate comprising at least one sheet type storage battery having a negative electrode layer, positive electrode layer and a solid electrolyte layer sandwiched between the positive and negative electrode layers, preimpregnation plates laminated on both surfaces of the base plate, and holes having the inner walls coated with copper coating and formed in the printed wiring board for electrically connecting the positive and negative electrode layers to the circuit elements provided on the printed wiring board.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 1989
    Date of Patent: May 28, 1991
    Assignee: Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Takeshi Miyabayashi
  • Patent number: 5017443
    Abstract: In a battery housing device including a case for receiving at least two batteries in a parallel condition, retaining means provided in the vicinity of one of inside surfaces of the case, and an electrode spring adapted to be retained by the retaining means, wherein positive and negative electrodes of the batteries are electrically connected to each other through the electrode spring.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 1989
    Date of Patent: May 21, 1991
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tomohisa Tominaga, Kazuichi Sato, Kouichi Otsuka, Toshiya Endo, Susumu Oikawa
  • Patent number: 5015546
    Abstract: A battery compartment for portable electrical equipment such as computers, tape recorders, VCR recorders, camera flash equipment and other such devices has an internal configuration and appropriate electrical connections to receive at least two different types of battery cells which may be of different dimensions. These can include standard dry cell batteries and rechargeable NiCad batteries, for example. The power pickup from the two types of cells is different, so that non-rechargeable dry cells can be isolated from charge when external power is attached to the portable device, while rechargeable cells are not isolated from the charge. The different dimensions are accommodated by orientation of the one type of cell-receiving spaces at right angles to the other type of cell-receiving spaces so that incorrect placement of the cell types is prevented.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 1989
    Date of Patent: May 14, 1991
    Assignee: Grid Systems Corporation
    Inventors: Ken L. Dulaney, John J. Daly
  • Patent number: 5015545
    Abstract: A housing for carrying a plurality of rechargeable batteries is configured such that air gaps defined adjacent to the batteries have a continuously-decreasing cross-sectional area. Cooling air being directed through the air gaps thus increases its speed in inverse relationship with its temperature rise such that all of the batteries are cooled to substantially the same degree. All of the cells of the batteries thereby accept electrical charge at a substantially uniform rate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 3, 1990
    Date of Patent: May 14, 1991
    Assignee: General Motors Corporation
    Inventor: Alec N. Brooks
  • Patent number: 5015544
    Abstract: A battery strength indicating and switch means on a battery which is coupled across the terminals of the battery and which is provided with an indicating means to indicate the strength of the battery and in addition, the battery strength indicating means is also provided with an in-line switch which can easily be depressed to complete the circuit so as to place the indicator means across the terminals of the cell and display the charge of the battery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 1989
    Date of Patent: May 14, 1991
    Assignee: Strategic Energy Ltd.
    Inventors: James R. Burroughs, Alan N. O'Kain
  • Patent number: 5011751
    Abstract: An electrochemical device is disclosed, which comprises at least a pair of electrodes; and a solid or solid-like composite electrolyte interposed therebetween, comprising substantially uniform spherical particles having no or substantially no electronic conductivity which are dispersed in the solid or solid-like composite electrolyte.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 1989
    Date of Patent: April 30, 1991
    Assignee: Ricoh Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Sachiko Yoneyama, Toshiyuki Ohsawa, Okitoshi Kimura, Toshiyuki Kabata