Patents by Inventor Fumio Kagami

Fumio Kagami has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 11108067
    Abstract: A fuel cell system that supplies fuel gas and oxidant gas to a fuel cell stack and causes the fuel cell stack to generate power includes a tank that stores aqueous solution containing oxygen-containing fuel, and a reformer that reforms mixed gas obtained as the aqueous solution is vaporized, and generates the fuel gas. The fuel cell system also includes an actuator that supplies the mixed gas to the reformer, a heating device that heats the reformer, a detecting unit that estimates or detects a concentration of the oxygen-containing fuel in the mixed gas that is supplied to the reformer, and a controller programmed to control operations of the actuator and the heating device so that the fuel cell generates power. The controller is programmed to increase a thermal dose to the reformer from the heating device or reduces a supply amount of the mixed gas to the reformer by the actuator when the concentration of the oxygen-containing fuel is high, compared to when the concentration is low.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 31, 2021
    Assignee: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio Kagami
  • Publication number: 20200381754
    Abstract: A fuel cell system that supplies fuel gas and oxidant gas to a fuel cell stack and causes the fuel cell stack to generate power includes a tank that stores aqueous solution containing oxygen-containing fuel, and a reformer that reforms mixed gas obtained as the aqueous solution is vaporized, and generates the fuel gas. The fuel cell system also includes an actuator that supplies the mixed gas to the reformer, a heating device that heats the reformer, a detecting unit that estimates or detects a concentration of the oxygen-containing fuel in the mixed gas that is supplied to the reformer, and a controller programmed to control operations of the actuator and the heating device so that the fuel cell generates power. The controller is programmed to increase a thermal dose to the reformer from the heating device or reduces a supply amount of the mixed gas to the reformer by the actuator when the concentration of the oxygen-containing fuel is high, compared to when the concentration is low.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 28, 2017
    Publication date: December 3, 2020
    Applicant: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio KAGAMI
  • Patent number: 10693161
    Abstract: There is provided a fuel cell system having a fuel cell, which determines whether an operating state thereof is a low-temperature-startup operation or a normal-running operation and performs recovery control for increasing a concentration gradient of water in an electrolyte membrane of the fuel cell to be greater than that in the normal-running operation when it is determined that the operating state is the low-temperature-startup operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 23, 2020
    Assignee: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio Kagami
  • Publication number: 20190348694
    Abstract: There is provided a fuel cell system having a fuel cell, which determines whether an operating state thereof is a low-temperature-startup operation or a normal-running operation and performs recovery control for increasing a concentration gradient of water in an electrolyte membrane of the fuel cell to be greater than that in the normal-running operation when it is determined that the operating state is the low-temperature-startup operation.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 7, 2016
    Publication date: November 14, 2019
    Applicant: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio KAGAMI
  • Patent number: 9935326
    Abstract: A fuel cell system for generating electric power by supplying an anode gas and a cathode gas to a fuel cell includes: an idle stop unit adapted to stop extraction of a current from the fuel cell in accordance with an operation state of the fuel cell system; and an idle stop recovery unit adapted to restart the extraction of the current from the fuel cell in accordance with the operation state of the fuel cell system. The idle stop recovery unit limits, on the basis of an output voltage of the fuel cell before recovery from idle stop, the current to be extracted from the fuel cell after the recovery from the idle stop.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2013
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2018
    Assignee: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio Kagami
  • Patent number: 9350033
    Abstract: A fuel cell system includes a cathode gas supply unit, a cathode pressure detection unit, a fuel cell temperature detection unit configured to detect a temperature of the fuel cell, an internal resistance detection unit configured to detect an internal resistance of the fuel cell, a target cathode flow rate calculation unit configured to calculate a target cathode flow rate necessary for supply to the fuel cell based on an operating state of the fuel cell system, a cathode flow rate estimation unit configured to estimate a flow rate of the cathode gas according to the pressure of the cathode gas, the temperature of the fuel cell and the internal resistance of the fuel cell, and a cathode flow rate control unit configured to control the cathode gas supply unit based on the target cathode flow rate and the estimated flow rate of the cathode gas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2016
    Assignee: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Yousuke Tomita, Keigo Ikezoe, Fumio Kagami
  • Publication number: 20150188170
    Abstract: A fuel cell system for generating electric power by supplying an anode gas and a cathode gas to a fuel cell includes: an idle stop unit adapted to stop extraction of a current from the fuel cell in accordance with an operation state of the fuel cell system; and an idle stop recovery unit adapted to restart the extraction of the current from the fuel cell in accordance with the operation state of the fuel cell system. The idle stop recovery unit limits, on the basis of an output voltage of the fuel cell before recovery from idle stop, the current to be extracted from the fuel cell after the recovery from the idle stop.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 23, 2013
    Publication date: July 2, 2015
    Applicant: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio Kagami
  • Patent number: 9012100
    Abstract: Provided is a fuel cell system including: a wetness detecting section for detecting a wetness of a fuel cell stack; a target SR setting section for setting a target SR of the fuel cell stack based on the wetness; a smallest SR setting section for setting, based on a load, a smallest SR necessary to prevent flooding of the fuel cell stack; and an SR control section for performing control so that an actual SR becomes temporarily larger than the smallest SR when the target SR is smaller than the smallest SR.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Fumio Kagami, Takahiro Fujii
  • Publication number: 20150004506
    Abstract: A fuel cell system includes a cathode gas supply unit, a cathode pressure detection unit, a fuel cell temperature detection unit configured to detect a temperature of the fuel cell, an internal resistance detection unit configured to detect an internal resistance of the fuel cell, a target cathode flow rate calculation unit configured to calculate a target cathode flow rate necessary for supply to the fuel cell based on an operating state of the fuel cell system, a cathode flow rate estimation unit configured to estimate a flow rate of the cathode gas according to the pressure of the cathode gas, the temperature of the fuel cell and the internal resistance of the fuel cell, and a cathode flow rate control unit configured to control the cathode gas supply unit based on the target cathode flow rate and the estimated flow rate of the cathode gas.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2013
    Publication date: January 1, 2015
    Inventors: Yousuke Tomita, Keigo Ikezoe, Fumio Kagami
  • Patent number: 8728641
    Abstract: A startup control device of a fuel cell system includes a fuel cell stack having a plurality of fuel cells stacked together, each of the fuel cells having a membrane electrode assembly including an electrolyte membrane interposed between a cathode electrode and an anode electrode. The device further includes a gas supply unit configured to supply a gas to the fuel cell stack and a controller configured to control the gas supply unit based on a parameter value related to the occurrence of flooding of the fuel cell stack. During startup of the fuel cell stack, the gas is supplied to the fuel cell stack at a first supply pressure for a time period determined based on the parameter value, and after the time period has expired, gas is supplied to the fuel cell stack at a second supply pressure, the second supply pressure being less than the first supply pressure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Fumio Kagami
  • Patent number: 8663856
    Abstract: A fuel cell stack is provided having a plurality of unit cells stacked in a horizontal direction. Each unit cell includes an electrolyte membrane having two surfaces and a peripheral edge, electrodes provided on both surfaces of the electrolyte membrane, frame-shaped members provided on both surfaces of the electrolyte membrane adjacent to the respective electrodes and adjacent the peripheral edge of the electrolyte membrane, separators provided on the electrodes and the frame-shaped members and having a reactant gas passage for supplying a reactant gas to each of the electrodes, and a manifold formed in the stacking direction in fluid communication with the reactant gas passage. The manifold includes a horizontal edge portion in fluid communication with the reactant gas passage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2014
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Fumio Kagami, Motoharu Obika
  • Publication number: 20130157158
    Abstract: Provided is a fuel cell system including: a wetness detecting section for detecting a wetness of a fuel cell stack; a target SR setting section for setting a target SR of the fuel cell stack based on the wetness; a smallest SR setting section for setting, based on a load, a smallest SR necessary to prevent flooding of the fuel cell stack; and an SR control section for performing control so that an actual SR becomes temporarily larger than the smallest SR when the target SR is smaller than the smallest SR.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 30, 2011
    Publication date: June 20, 2013
    Inventors: Fumio Kagami, Takahiro Fujii
  • Patent number: 8216733
    Abstract: Voltage rising detection unit detects a voltage rising condition of a fuel cell stack after the supply of reactant gas to the fuel cell stack is started. A control unit determines an internal state of the fuel cell stack on the basis of the detected voltage rising condition of the fuel cell stack, and then decides a subsequent operation of the fuel cell stack in accordance with the determination. This makes it possible to minimize deterioration of the fuel cell stack which is caused by generating power continuously in an unsuitable state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 2004
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2012
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Fumio Kagami, Kazuya Tajiri
  • Publication number: 20110008690
    Abstract: A fuel cell stack is provided having a plurality of unit cells stacked in a horizontal direction. Each unit cell includes an electrolyte membrane having two surfaces and a peripheral edge, electrodes provided on both surfaces of the electrolyte membrane, frame-shaped members provided on both surfaces of the electrolyte membrane adjacent to the respective electrodes and adjacent the peripheral edge of the electrolyte membrane, separators provided on the electrodes and the frame-shaped members and having a reactant gas passage for supplying a reactant gas to each of the electrodes, and a manifold formed in the stacking direction in fluid communication with the reactant gas passage. The manifold includes a horizontal edge portion in fluid communication with the reactant gas passage.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 20, 2009
    Publication date: January 13, 2011
    Applicant: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD
    Inventors: Fumio Kagami, Motoharu Obika
  • Publication number: 20090110987
    Abstract: A startup control device of a fuel cell system includes a fuel cell stack having a plurality of fuel cells stacked together, each of the fuel cells having a membrane electrode assembly including an electrolyte membrane interposed between a cathode electrode and an anode electrode. The device further includes a gas supply unit configured to supply a gas to the fuel cell stack and a controller configured to control the gas supply unit based on a parameter value related to the occurrence of flooding of the fuel cell stack. During startup of the fuel cell stack, the gas is supplied to the fuel cell stack at a first supply pressure for a time period determined based on the parameter value, and after the time period has expired, gas is supplied to the fuel cell stack at a second supply pressure, the second supply pressure being less than the first supply pressure.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 14, 2008
    Publication date: April 30, 2009
    Applicant: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio KAGAMI
  • Publication number: 20080145714
    Abstract: A fuel cell system (S1, S2, S3, S4, S5) includes a fuel cell (1) supplied with fuel and oxidizer to generate electric power, a heating mechanism (6, 31, 32) executing a heating to the fuel cell, a temperature detector (7) detecting a temperature of the fuel cell, and a controller (5) operative to calculate a temperature drop speed of the fuel cell, during a period in which the temperature of the fuel cell is lowering, using the temperature of the fuel cell detected by the temperature detector to control the heating mechanism such that the temperature crop speed is kept equal to or less than a given speed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 8, 2005
    Publication date: June 19, 2008
    Inventor: Fumio Kagami
  • Publication number: 20070184314
    Abstract: A fuel cell system and a method of operating a fuel cell system are disclosed wherein an external electric source (4) is provided to apply current to a fuel cell (1), comprised of a polymer electrolyte membrane-electrode catalyst complex having a polymer electrolyte membrane (21) sandwiched between a fuel electrode (24A) and an oxidant electrode (24B) and separators (26, 28) formed with flow channels (27, 29) to supply fuel and oxidant to the polymer electrolyte membrane-electrode catalyst complex, and operative to change a direction in which current is applied to the fuel cell (1).
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 8, 2004
    Publication date: August 9, 2007
    Applicant: NISSAN MOTOR CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Fumio Kagami
  • Publication number: 20070042235
    Abstract: Voltage rising detection unit detects a voltage rising condition of a fuel cell stack after the supply of reactant gas to the fuel cell stack is started. A control unit determines an internal state of the fuel cell stack on the basis of the detected voltage rising condition of the fuel cell stack, and then decides a subsequent operation of the fuel cell stack in accordance with the determination. This makes it possible to minimize deterioration of the fuel cell stack which is caused by generating power continuously in an unsuitable state.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 15, 2004
    Publication date: February 22, 2007
    Inventors: Fumio Kagami, Kazuya Tajiri
  • Publication number: 20050202293
    Abstract: A fuel cell conditioning system and related method are disclosed to condition a fuel cell stack 2 to be ready for use. The fuel cell stack 2 is associated with a cell temperature control device 3, 15 such that a temperature of the fuel cell stack 2 is raised to a normal operating temperature upon which humidified fuel and oxidizer gas are supplied for a given time interval to the fuel cell 2 to generate electric power for that time period. After stopping the generation of electric power, supplying dry air and fuel to the fuel cell stack 2 causes residual moisture to be purged from the fuel cell stack 2. After purging, a temperature of the fuel cell stack 2 is lowered to a value below a freezing point to cause moisture to condense in a solid polymer membrane to contain water. Further, temperature-rise, electric power generation, dry purging and temperature-drop are repeatedly executed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 23, 2005
    Publication date: September 15, 2005
    Inventors: Fumio Kagami, Naoya Matsuoka, Ryoichi Shimoi