Patents by Inventor Hidenobu Wakita

Hidenobu Wakita 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).

  • Publication number: 20200343567
    Abstract: An electrochemical hydrogen compressor includes: a cell including a proton conductive electrolyte membrane having a pair of principal surfaces, a cathode disposed on a first one of the principal surfaces of the electrolyte membrane, and an anode disposed on a second one of the principal surfaces of the electrolyte membrane; a voltage applicator that applies a voltage between the anode and the cathode; a dew point adjuster that adjusts a dew point of a hydrogen-containing gas to be supplied to the anode; and a controller that, when the temperature of the cell increases, controls the dew point adjuster to increase the dew point of the hydrogen-containing gas.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 14, 2020
    Publication date: October 29, 2020
    Inventors: HIDENOBU WAKITA, YUUICHI YAKUMARU, KUNIHIRO UKAI
  • Patent number: 10811712
    Abstract: A hydrogen supply system includes an electrochemical hydrogen pump which includes: an electrolyte membrane; an anode provided on a first surface of the electrolyte membrane; a cathode provided on a second surface of the electrolyte membrane opposite to the first surface; and a current adjuster adjusting a current amount flowing between the anode and the cathode, and which performs a hydrogen supply operation by allowing a current to flow between the anode and the cathode using the current adjuster so as to boost the pressure of hydrogen which is supplied to an anode side at a cathode side and to supply the pressure-boosted hydrogen to a hydrogen demander; and a dew point adjuster adjusting a dew point of a mixed gas in which a hydrogen-containing gas which is discharged from the anode side and a hydrogen-containing gas which is supplied from an outside are mixed together.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 20, 2020
    Assignee: PANASONIC INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Osamu Sakai, Kunihiro Ukai, Hidenobu Wakita
  • Patent number: 10756376
    Abstract: A hydrogen supply system includes: an electrochemical hydrogen pump including an electrolyte membrane, an anode and a cathode provided to a first and second main surfaces of the electrolyte membrane, respectively, an anode flow path and cathode flow path through which hydrogen flows, and a voltage applicator applying a voltage between the anode and cathode, pressurizing and sending hydrogen supplied to the anode via the anode flow path to the cathode by applying a voltage by the voltage applicator, and supplying the pressurized hydrogen in the cathode flow path to a hydrogen reservoir; a pressure adjuster adjusting a cathode flow path pressure; and a controller controlling the pressure adjuster and making the cathode flow path pressure higher than an anode flow path pressure before starting a hydrogen pressurization action for pressurizing and supplying hydrogen supplied to the anode flow path to the cathode flow path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 2019
    Date of Patent: August 25, 2020
    Assignee: PANASONIC INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Hidenobu Wakita, Kunihiro Ukai, Osamu Sakai, Yoichiro Tsuji
  • Patent number: 10661221
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a proton-conducting electrolyte membrane, an anode, a cathode, a first flow path which is disposed on the anode and through which an anode fluid containing hydrogen as a constituent element flows, a second flow path which is disposed on the cathode and through which hydrogen flows, a voltage applicator, a detector which detects a hydrogen cross leak amount passing through the membrane, where the detector detects the hydrogen cross leak amount from, a natural potential of one electrode of the cathode and the anode after forming a state where hydrogen is present at the one electrode and hydrogen is not present at the other electrode of the cathode and the anode, or a current flowing between the anode and the cathode when the voltage is applied from the voltage applicator in a state where the first flow path and the second flow path are both sealed off.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 26, 2020
    Assignee: PANASONIC INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Hidenobu Wakita, Yasuhiko Itoh, Yusuke Fujita
  • Patent number: 10625198
    Abstract: A desulfurization apparatus according to the present invention includes: a first desulfurizer filled with a first desulfurization agent that removes a first sulfur compound from a hydrocarbon fuel; and a second desulfurizer filled with a second desulfurization agent that removes a second sulfur compound from the hydrocarbon fuel, the second desulfurizer being provided downstream of the first desulfurizer in a flow direction of the hydrocarbon fuel. The second desulfurization agent is constituted by a porous coordination polymer having a polymeric structure that is a combination of copper ions and organic ligands. A sulfur compound adsorption ability of the second desulfurization agent to adsorb the second sulfur compound is different from a sulfur compound adsorption ability of the first desulfurization agent to adsorb the first sulfur compound. A temperature of the second desulfurization agent is kept to 100° C. or lower.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 2019
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2020
    Assignees: PANASONIC CORPORATION, KYOTO UNIVERSITY
    Inventors: Masashi Morita, Jin Zhang, Hidenobu Wakita, Yoichiro Tsuji, Susumu Kitagawa, Masakazu Higuchi
  • Publication number: 20200023306
    Abstract: An electrochemical hydrogen pump includes an electrolyte membrane, an anode catalyst layer, a cathode catalyst layer, an anode gas diffusion layer, a cathode gas diffusion layer, an anode separator, a cathode separator, a first end plate and a second end plate that are disposed on the respective ends of at least one hydrogen pump unit in which the electrolyte membrane, the catalyst layers, the gas diffusion layers, and the separators are stacked on each other, a fastener that fastens the end plates and at least one hydrogen pump unit, and a voltage applier. The electrochemical hydrogen pump transfers hydrogen from the anode catalyst layer to the cathode catalyst layer and pressurizes hydrogen when the voltage applier applies the voltage. The cathode gas diffusion layer includes a water-repellent carbon fiber layer in a main surface thereof that is on a side of the cathode catalyst layer, and is compressed by the fastener.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 5, 2019
    Publication date: January 23, 2020
    Inventors: KUNIHIRO UKAI, TAKAYUKI NAKAUE, HIDENOBU WAKITA
  • Publication number: 20190383283
    Abstract: An electrochemical hydrogen pump includes at least one hydrogen pump unit including an electrolyte membrane, an anode on one main surface of the electrolyte membrane, a cathode on the other main surface of the electrolyte membrane, an anode separator on the anode, and a cathode separator on the cathode, the at least one hydrogen pump unit transferring, to the cathode, hydrogen supplied to the anode and pressurizing the hydrogen, a first fixing member for preventing movement of the cathode separator in a direction in which the cathode separator is stacked, a first end plate on the anode separator at one end in the stacking direction, a second end plate on the cathode separator at the other end in the stacking direction, and a first gas flow channel through which hydrogen in the cathode is supplied to a first space between the second end plate and the cathode separator.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 21, 2019
    Publication date: December 19, 2019
    Inventors: KUNIHIRO UKAI, NORIHIKO KAWABATA, OSAMU SAKAI, HIDENOBU WAKITA, JIN ZHANG, YUKIMUNE KANI
  • Publication number: 20190368483
    Abstract: A hydrogen supply system includes: an electrochemical hydrogen pump including a proton-conductive electrolyte membrane, an anode provided to a first and second main surfaces of the proton-conductive electrolyte membrane, respectively, an anode flow path and cathode flow path through which hydrogen flows, and a voltage applicator applying a voltage between the anode and cathode, pressurizing and sending hydrogen supplied to the anode to the cathode by applying a voltage by the voltage applicator, and supplying the pressurized hydrogen in the cathode flow path to a hydrogen reservoir; a humidity adjuster adjusting humidity of at least one of the anode and cathode flow paths; and a controller controlling the humidity adjuster to increase the humidity of at least one of the anode and cathode flow paths in supplying hydrogen with relative humidity of less than 100% to the anode flow path and driving the electrochemical hydrogen pump.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 2, 2019
    Publication date: December 5, 2019
    Inventors: HIDENOBU WAKITA, KUNIHIRO UKAI, OSAMU SAKAI
  • Publication number: 20190363386
    Abstract: A hydrogen supply system includes: an electrochemical hydrogen pump including an electrolyte membrane, an anode and a cathode provided to a first and second main surfaces of the electrolyte membrane, respectively, an anode flow path and cathode flow path through which hydrogen flows, and a voltage applicator applying a voltage between the anode and cathode, pressurizing and sending hydrogen supplied to the anode via the anode flow path to the cathode by applying a voltage by the voltage applicator, and supplying the pressurized hydrogen in the cathode flow path to a hydrogen reservoir; a pressure adjuster adjusting a cathode flow path pressure; and a controller controlling the pressure adjuster and making the cathode flow path pressure higher than an anode flow path pressure before starting a hydrogen pressurization action for pressurizing and supplying hydrogen supplied to the anode flow path to the cathode flow path.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 8, 2019
    Publication date: November 28, 2019
    Inventors: HIDENOBU WAKITA, KUNIHIRO UKAI, OSAMU SAKAI, YOICHIRO TSUJI
  • Publication number: 20190316603
    Abstract: An electrochemical hydrogen pump includes: a cell including a proton conductive electrolyte membrane having a first main surface and a second main surface, a cathode disposed on the first main surface of the proton conductive electrolyte membrane, and an anode disposed on the second main surface of the proton conductive electrolyte membrane; a voltage applier that applies a voltage between the anode and the cathode; a cooler that cools the cell; and a controller that controls the cooler to increase an amount of cooling per unit time of the cell when a pressure of a cathode gas flow path on the cathode increases.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 19, 2019
    Publication date: October 17, 2019
    Inventors: JIN ZHANG, HIDENOBU WAKITA, ATSUO OKAICHI
  • Publication number: 20190240612
    Abstract: A desulfurization apparatus according to the present invention includes: a first desulfurizer filled with a first desulfurization agent that removes a first sulfur compound from a hydrocarbon fuel; and a second desulfurizer filled with a second desulfurization agent that removes a second sulfur compound from the hydrocarbon fuel, the second desulfurizer being provided downstream of the first desulfurizer in a flow direction of the hydrocarbon fuel. The second desulfurization agent is constituted by a porous coordination polymer having a polymeric structure that is a combination of copper ions and organic ligands. A sulfur compound adsorption ability of the second desulfurization agent to adsorb the second sulfur compound is different from a sulfur compound adsorption ability of the first desulfurization agent to adsorb the first sulfur compound. A temperature of the second desulfurization agent is kept to 100° C. or lower.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 17, 2019
    Publication date: August 8, 2019
    Inventors: Masashi MORITA, Jin ZHANG, Hidenobu WAKITA, Yoichiro TSUJI, Susumu KITAGAWA, Masakazu HIGUCHI
  • Patent number: 10364149
    Abstract: A hydrogen generation system including: a reformer generating hydrogen-containing gas using a raw material and reforming water; a combustor combusting hydrogen-containing gas and air and generating exhaust gas; a first channel passing cooling water; a condenser generating condensed water by heat exchange between exhaust gas and cooling water; a tank storing condensed water as cooling water; a pump supplying cooling water from the tank to the condenser; a second channel branching at a branch between the pump and condenser in the first channel, and passing some cooling water to the reformer as reforming water; a heater provided downstream of the branch, and heating the first channel; a temperature detector detecting the temperature of the first channel; and a controller, in an activation operation mode, determining whether the second channel is filled with reforming water, based on the temperature detected by the temperature detector after the heater has operated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 30, 2019
    Assignee: Panasonic Intellectual Property Management Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Jin Zhang, Shigenori Onuma, Hidenobu Wakita, Yoichiro Tsuji, Akinori Yukimasa, Hiromi Kita, Masashi Morita
  • Publication number: 20190190050
    Abstract: A solid oxide fuel cell system includes at least a solid oxide fuel cell that generates, through an electrochemical reaction, electric power from anode gas and cathode gas containing oxygen, a combustor that burns anode off-gas and cathode off-gas both discharged from the solid oxide fuel cell, and that produces exhaust gas, a purifier that is heated by heat of the exhaust gas produced by the combustor, and that includes a purification catalyst to remove substances to be cleaned up, those substances being contained in the exhaust gas, and a controller. The controller raises the temperature of the purifier to 300° C. or higher for a predetermined time.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 19, 2019
    Publication date: June 20, 2019
    Inventors: Masashi MORITA, Jin ZHANG, Takehiko ISE, Hidenobu WAKITA
  • Publication number: 20190173114
    Abstract: A hydrogen supply system includes an electrochemical hydrogen pump which includes: an electrolyte membrane; an anode provided on a first surface of the electrolyte membrane; a cathode provided on a second surface of the electrolyte membrane opposite to the first surface; and a current adjuster adjusting a current amount flowing between the anode and the cathode, and which performs a hydrogen supply operation by allowing a current to flow between the anode and the cathode using the current adjuster so as to boost the pressure of hydrogen which is supplied to an anode side at a cathode side and to supply the pressure-boosted hydrogen to a hydrogen demander; and a dew point adjuster adjusting a dew point of a mixed gas in which a hydrogen-containing gas which is discharged from the anode side and a hydrogen-containing gas which is supplied from an outside are mixed together.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 21, 2018
    Publication date: June 6, 2019
    Inventors: OSAMU SAKAI, KUNIHIRO UKAI, HIDENOBU WAKITA
  • Patent number: 10301179
    Abstract: An apparatus includes: an electrolyte membrane; a cathode catalyst layer provided to one main surface of the electrolyte membrane; an anode catalyst layer provided to the other main surface of the electrolyte membrane; a cathode gas diffusion layer provided on a main surface of the cathode catalyst layer not facing the electrolyte membrane; a separator including a recess through which cathode gas flows; an anode gas diffusion layer provided on a main surface of the anode catalyst layer not facing the electrolyte membrane; a voltage applicator applying a voltage between the cathode catalyst layer and the anode catalyst layer; and a fastener fastening a laminated body. The cathode gas diffusion layer is accommodated in the recess, projects from the recess in a thickness direction before fastening of the laminated body, and includes an elastic member between side surfaces of the cathode gas diffusion layer and of the recess.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2019
    Assignee: PANASONIC INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Osamu Sakai, Kunihiro Ukai, Hidenobu Wakita, Yukimune Kani, Yuuichi Yakumaru, Takashi Sotoku
  • Publication number: 20190088964
    Abstract: A hydrogen purifier includes an electrolyte membrane including a proton conductive polymer, an anode having an anode catalyst layer disposed on one side of the electrolyte membrane, a cathode having a cathode catalyst layer disposed on the other side of the electrolyte membrane, a separator which has a fluid channel and through which carbon monoxide, hydrogen and oxygen are supplied to the anode, and a power supply that energizes the anode and the cathode, the anode catalyst layer including Pt, the cathode catalyst layer including Pt and Ru.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 16, 2018
    Publication date: March 21, 2019
    Inventors: Hidenobu WAKITA, Yasuhiko ITOH, Atsuo OKAICHI, Osamu SAKAI
  • Patent number: 10202696
    Abstract: Provided is an electromechanical hydrogen pump, including: (i) an electrolyte membrane; (ii) an anode electrode layer and an anode diffusion layer that are provided at one side of the electrolyte membrane; (iii) a cathode electrode layer and a cathode diffusion layer that are provided at the other side of the electrolyte membrane; (iv) an anode seal that has openings each surrounding the anode diffusion layer; (v) a cathode seal that has openings each surrounding the cathode diffusion layer; (vi) an anode separator that is placed on an outer side of the anode diffusion layer; and (vii) a cathode separator that is placed on an outer side of the cathode diffusion layer, wherein no spaces are provided between the anode diffusion layer and the anode seal or between the cathode diffusion layer and the cathode seal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 12, 2019
    Assignee: Panasonic Intellectual Property Management Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Norihiko Kawabata, Kazuya Usirokawa, Shinji Yoshino, Hidenobu Wakita
  • Publication number: 20180166713
    Abstract: An apparatus includes a proton-conducting electrolyte membrane, an anode, a cathode, a first flow path which is disposed on the anode and through which an anode fluid containing hydrogen as a constituent element flows, a second flow path which is disposed on the cathode and through which hydrogen flows, a voltage applicator, a detector which detects a hydrogen cross leak amount passing through the membrane, where the detector detects the hydrogen cross leak amount from, a natural potential of one electrode of the cathode and the anode after forming a state where hydrogen is present at the one electrode and hydrogen is not present at the other electrode of the cathode and the anode, or a current flowing between the anode and the cathode when the voltage is applied from the voltage applicator in a state where the first flow path and the second flow path are both sealed off.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 10, 2017
    Publication date: June 14, 2018
    Inventors: HIDENOBU WAKITA, YASUHIKO ITOH, YUSUKE FUJITA
  • Publication number: 20180155193
    Abstract: An apparatus includes: an electrolyte membrane; a cathode catalyst layer provided to one main surface of the electrolyte membrane; an anode catalyst layer provided to the other main surface of the electrolyte membrane; a cathode gas diffusion layer provided on a main surface of the cathode catalyst layer not facing the electrolyte membrane; a separator including a recess through which cathode gas flows; an anode gas diffusion layer provided on a main surface of the anode catalyst layer not facing the electrolyte membrane; a voltage applicator applying a voltage between the cathode catalyst layer and the anode catalyst layer; and a fastener fastening a laminated body. The cathode gas diffusion layer is accommodated in the recess, projects from the recess in a thickness direction before fastening of the laminated body, and includes an elastic member between side surfaces of the cathode gas diffusion layer and of the recess.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 6, 2017
    Publication date: June 7, 2018
    Inventors: OSAMU SAKAI, KUNIHIRO UKAI, HIDENOBU WAKITA, YUKIMUNE KANI, YUUICHI YAKUMARU, TAKASHI SOTOKU
  • Publication number: 20180105418
    Abstract: A hydrogen generation system including: a reformer generating hydrogen-containing gas using a raw material and reforming water; a combustor combusting hydrogen-containing gas and air and generating exhaust gas; a first channel passing cooling water; a condenser generating condensed water by heat exchange between exhaust gas and cooling water; a tank storing condensed water as cooling water; a pump supplying cooling water from the tank to the condenser; a second channel branching at a branch between the pump and condenser in the first channel, and passing some cooling water to the reformer as reforming water; a heater provided downstream of the branch, and heating the first channel; a temperature detector detecting the temperature of the first channel; and a controller, in an activation operation mode, determining whether the second channel is filled with reforming water, based on the temperature detected by the temperature detector after the heater has operated.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 2, 2017
    Publication date: April 19, 2018
    Inventors: JIN ZHANG, SHIGENORI ONUMA, HIDENOBU WAKITA, YOICHIRO TSUJI, AKINORI YUKIMASA, HIROMI KITA, MASASHI MORITA