Patents by Inventor Richard Langan

Richard Langan 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: 10259705
    Abstract: A packaged fuel unit and a refillable hydrogen generator that uses the fuel unit to produce hydrogen gas are disclosed. The fuel unit includes a reactant that can undergo a thermal decomposition reaction that produces hydrogen gas when heated to at least a minimum initiation temperature. The reactant is contained within a package that includes a poor thermal conductor with one or more thermal conductor sections for conducting heat from outside the package to the reactant. The hydrogen generator includes a holder with a cavity in which the fuel unit can be removably disposed and a heating system for heating the fuel unit when disposed therein. The hydrogen generator can be part of a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery that is provided with hydrogen gas from the hydrogen generator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2019
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Chad E. Law, Jason L. Stimits, Mark D. Vandayburg, Gerald A. Zsigo, Thomas J. Kmetich, Craig R. Huddleston, Paul D. Griffith, Jr., Andrew Jasin
  • Patent number: 10258950
    Abstract: A method of making a package for a fuel unit, a fuel unit including the package, and a hydrogen generator including one or more of the fuel units are disclosed. The package includes a package strip made by forming apertures in a nonconductive substrate strip, forming conductor sections in a conductor strip, aligning the substrate and conductor strips, bonding the conductor sections to the substrate strip to cover the apertures, and removing non-bonded portions of the conductor strip. A package enclosing a hydrogen generating reactant is formed by securing a segment of the package strip to itself, to one or more other segments and/or to one or more other package components. One or more conductor sections in the package strip are in thermal contact with one or more quantities of reactant composition so heat can be transferred thermally decompose the reactant composition and generate hydrogen gas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 2014
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2019
    Assignee: INTELLIGENT ENERGY INC.
    Inventors: Thomas J. Kmetich, Chad E. Law, Richard A. Langan
  • Patent number: 10014540
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator is provided for generating hydrogen gas for a fuel cell stack. The hydrogen generator includes a container, and a liquid reactant storage area configured to contain a liquid including a first reactant. The hydrogen generator also includes a reaction area within the container, and a solid containing a second reactant within the reaction area and having a concentration gradient that varies along an axis such as length of the solid. The hydrogen generator further includes a liquid delivery member for delivering the liquid to the solid in the reaction area to generate hydrogen. The concentration gradient controls a reaction rate of the first and second reactants.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 8, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 3, 2018
    Assignee: INTELLIGENT ENERGY INC.
    Inventors: Jason L. Stimits, Guanghong Zheng, Richard A. Langan
  • Patent number: 9695043
    Abstract: Disclosed is a fuel unit for a gas generator such as a hydrogen gas generator that can supply gas to a gas consuming system such as a fuel cell system. The fuel unit includes a housing containing a solid fuel composition and a heat producing material. The fuel composition contains gas releasing solid material that reacts to release gas when heated. The heat producing material reacts exothermically to produce heat. A plurality of quantities of the heat producing material are in thermal communication with corresponding portions of an unsegregated quantity the fuel composition such that, following initiation of a reaction of each quantity of the heat producing material, the quantity of heat producing material will heat the corresponding portion of the unsegregated quantity of the fuel composition, and the corresponding portion of the unsegregated quantity of the fuel composition will react to release a quantity of the gas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2017
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Richard A. Langan, Thomas J. Kmetich, Gerald A. Zsigo
  • Patent number: 9660279
    Abstract: Disclosed are a fuel unit for a hydrogen generator and methods for producing the fuel unit and the hydrogen generator. A fuel sheet (50) is made by disposing a plurality of fuel pellets (50A-50J) containing a hydrogen-containing material on a substrate (52), and one or more fuel sheets are formed into a non-cylindrical fuel sheet assembly my moving (e.g., bending) a portion of the fuel sheet (50) to position pellets adjacent to each other such that adjacent sides of the adjacent pellets lie in essentially parallel planes. A non-cylindrical fuel unit is produced from one or more of the fuel sheet assemblies. Fuel units can be replaceably disposed in a hydrogen generator, and fuel pellets can be selectively heated to produce hydrogen gas as needed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 23, 2017
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Craig Huddleston, Thomas Kmetich, Richard Langan, Chad Law, Michael Stallard, Jason Stimits, Mark Vandayburg
  • Patent number: 9543604
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator and a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery and the hydrogen generator. The hydrogen generator includes a cartridge, a housing with a cavity to removably contain the cartridge, and an initiation system. The cartridge includes a casing; a plurality of pellets including a hydrogen containing material; a plurality of solid heat transfer members in contact with but not penetrating the casing; a hydrogen outlet in the casing; and a hydrogen flow path from each pellet to the hydrogen outlet. A plurality of heating elements is disposed inside the housing. When the cartridge is in the cavity, each heating element is disposed so heat can be conducted from the heating element and through the casing and corresponding heat transfer member to initiate the release of hydrogen gas. The initiation system can selectively heat one or more pellets to release hydrogen gas as needed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2015
    Date of Patent: January 10, 2017
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Thomas J. Kmetich, Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Olen Vanderleeden
  • Publication number: 20160159647
    Abstract: A packaged fuel unit and a refillable hydrogen generator that uses the fuel unit to produce hydrogen gas are disclosed. The fuel unit includes a reactant that can undergo a thermal decomposition reaction that produces hydrogen gas when heated to at least a minimum initiation temperature. The reactant is contained within a package that includes a poor thermal conductor with one or more thermal conductor sections for conducting heat from outside the package to the reactant. The hydrogen generator includes a holder with a cavity in which the fuel unit can be removably disposed and a heating system for heating the fuel unit when disposed therein. The hydrogen generator can be part of a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery that is provided with hydrogen gas from the hydrogen generator.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 17, 2016
    Publication date: June 9, 2016
    Applicant: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Chad E. Law, Jason L. Stimits, Mark D. Vandayburg, Gerald A. Zsigo, Thomas J. Kmetich, Craig R. Huddleston, Paul D. Griffith, JR., Andrew Jasin
  • Publication number: 20160104907
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator and a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery and the hydrogen generator. The hydrogen generator includes a cartridge, a housing with a cavity to removably contain the cartridge, and an initiation system. The cartridge includes a casing; a plurality of pellets including a hydrogen containing material; a plurality of solid heat transfer members in contact with but not penetrating the casing; a hydrogen outlet in the casing; and a hydrogen flow path from each pellet to the hydrogen outlet. A plurality of heating elements is disposed inside the housing. When the cartridge is in the cavity, each heating element is disposed so heat can be conducted from the heating element and through the casing and corresponding heat transfer member to initiate the release of hydrogen gas. The initiation system can selectively heat one or more pellets to release hydrogen gas as needed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 18, 2015
    Publication date: April 14, 2016
    Applicant: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Thomas J. Kmetich, Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Olen Vanderleeden
  • Patent number: 9295958
    Abstract: A packaged fuel unit and a refillable hydrogen generator that uses the fuel unit to produce hydrogen gas are disclosed. The fuel unit includes a reactant that can undergo a thermal decomposition reaction that produces hydrogen gas when heated to at least a minimum initiation temperature. The reactant is contained within a package that includes a poor thermal conductor with one or more thermal conductor sections for conducting heat from outside the package to the reactant. The hydrogen generator includes a holder with a cavity in which the fuel unit can be removably disposed and a heating system for heating the fuel unit when disposed therein. The hydrogen generator can be part of a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery that is provided with hydrogen gas from the hydrogen generator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 17, 2013
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2016
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Chad E. Law, Jason L. Stimits, Mark D. Vandayburg, Gerald A. Zsigo, Thomas J. Kmetich, Craig R. Huddleston, Paul D. Griffith, Jr., Andrew Jasin
  • Patent number: 9231264
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator and a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery and the hydrogen generator. The hydrogen generator includes a cartridge, a housing with a cavity to removably contain the cartridge, and an initiation system. The cartridge includes a casing; a plurality of pellets including a hydrogen containing material; a plurality of solid heat transfer members in contact with but not penetrating the casing; a hydrogen outlet in the casing; and a hydrogen flow path from each pellet to the hydrogen outlet. A plurality of heating elements is disposed inside the housing. When the cartridge is in the cavity, each heating element is disposed so heat can be conducted from the heating element and through the casing and corresponding heat transfer member to initiate the release of hydrogen gas. The initiation system can selectively heat one or more pellets to release hydrogen gas as needed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 5, 2016
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy, Inc.
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Thomas J. Kmetich, Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Olen Vanderleeden
  • Publication number: 20150244014
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator is provided for generating hydrogen gas for a fuel cell stack. The hydrogen generator includes a container, and a liquid reactant storage area configured to contain a liquid including a first reactant. The hydrogen generator also includes a reaction area within the container, and a solid containing a second reactant within the reaction area and having a concentration gradient that varies along an axis such as length of the solid. The hydrogen generator further includes a liquid delivery member for delivering the liquid to the solid in the reaction area to generate hydrogen. The concentration gradient controls a reaction rate of the first and second reactants.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 8, 2015
    Publication date: August 27, 2015
    Applicant: INTELLIGENT ENERGY INC.
    Inventors: Jason L. Stimits, Guanghong Zheng, Richard A. Langan
  • Publication number: 20150203353
    Abstract: Disclosed is a fuel unit for a gas generator such as a hydrogen gas generator that can supply gas to a gas consuming system such as a fuel cell system. The fuel unit includes a housing containing a solid fuel composition and a heat producing material. The fuel composition contains gas releasing solid material that reacts to release gas when heated. The heat producing material reacts exothermically to produce heat. A plurality of quantities of the heat producing material are in thermal communication with corresponding portions of an unsegregated quantity the fuel composition such that, following initiation of a reaction of each quantity of the heat producing material, the quantity of heat producing material will heat the corresponding portion of the unsegregated quantity of the fuel composition, and the corresponding portion of the unsegregated quantity of the fuel composition will react to release a quantity of the gas.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 1, 2015
    Publication date: July 23, 2015
    Applicant: INTELLIGENT ENERGY INC.
    Inventors: Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Richard A. Langan, Thomas J. Kmetich, Gerald A. Zsigo
  • Patent number: 9056768
    Abstract: A fuel cartridge and a hydrogen generator are provided for supplying hydrogen gas to a hydrogen gas device. The fuel cartridge includes a fuel composition disposed in a container and a multi-layer package material, such as a laminate, enclosing the fuel composition therein. The laminate includes a polymer layer distal the fuel composition and a conductor layer proximate the fuel composition and including a preformed portion. The hydrogen generator includes a punch thermally coupled to a heater assembly and is configured to move between a retracted state and a puncture state. When the fuel cartridge is disposed in the hydrogen generating apparatus, the punch is configured to puncture the polymer layer and bring the coined portion into contact with the fuel composition. Heat is applied to a hydrogen containing material in the fuel composition through the punch and preformed portion to release hydrogen gas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 16, 2015
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventor: Richard A. Langan
  • Patent number: 9051183
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator is provided for generating hydrogen gas for a fuel cell stack. The hydrogen generator includes a container, and a liquid reactant storage area configured to contain a liquid including a first reactant. The hydrogen generator also includes a reaction area within the container, and a solid containing a second reactant within the reaction area and having a concentration gradient that varies along an axis such as length of the solid. The hydrogen generator further includes a liquid delivery member for delivering the liquid to the solid in the reaction area to generate hydrogen. The concentration gradient controls a reaction rate of the first and second reactants.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 9, 2015
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Jason L. Stimits, Guanghong Zheng, Richard A. Langan
  • Publication number: 20150089796
    Abstract: A method of making a package for a fuel unit, a fuel unit including the package, and a hydrogen generator including one or more of the fuel units are disclosed. The package includes a package strip made by forming apertures in a nonconductive substrate strip, forming conductor sections in a conductor strip, aligning the substrate and conductor strips, bonding the conductor sections to the substrate strip to cover the apertures, and removing non-bonded portions of the conductor strip. A package enclosing a hydrogen generating reactant is formed by securing a segment of the package strip to itself, to one or more other segments and/or to one or more other package components. One or more conductor sections in the package strip are in thermal contact with one or more quantities of reactant composition so heat can be transferred thermally decompose the reactant composition and generate hydrogen gas.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 8, 2014
    Publication date: April 2, 2015
    Inventors: Thomas J. Kmetich, Chad E. Law, Richard A. Langan
  • Publication number: 20150072256
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator and a fuel cell system including the hydrogen generator are disclosed. The hydrogen generator includes a reactant that undergoes a thermal decomposition reaction to produce hydrogen when heated. A laser is used to initiate the reaction. The reactant is contained in a reactant composition in a user-replaceable disc-shaped fuel unit. The reactant composition can be segregated into individual quantities. The fuel unit and the laser beam are periodically realigned by incrementally rotating the fuel unit and/or incrementally redirect the laser beam.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 13, 2014
    Publication date: March 12, 2015
    Inventors: Jean-Francois Audebert, Olen R. Vanderleden, Richard A. Langan, Chad E. Law, Thomas J. Kmetich, Craig R. Huddleston, Jason L. Stimits, Gerald Zsigo, Kevin P. Murray
  • Publication number: 20150023846
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator and a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery and the hydrogen generator. The hydrogen generator includes a cartridge, a housing with a cavity to removably contain the cartridge, and an initiation system. The cartridge includes a casing; a plurality of pellets including a hydrogen containing material; a plurality of solid heat transfer members in contact with but not penetrating the casing; a hydrogen outlet in the casing; and a hydrogen flow path from each pellet to the hydrogen outlet. A plurality of heating elements is disposed inside the housing. When the cartridge is in the cavity, each heating element is disposed so heat can be conducted from the heating element and through the casing and corresponding heat transfer member to initiate the release of hydrogen gas. The initiation system can selectively heat one or more pellets to release hydrogen gas as needed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 3, 2014
    Publication date: January 22, 2015
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Thomas J. Kmetich, Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Olen Vanderleeden
  • Publication number: 20140377677
    Abstract: Disclosed are a fuel unit for a hydrogen generator and methods for producing the fuel unit and the hydrogen generator. A fuel sheet (50) is made by disposing a plurality of fuel pellets (50A-50J) containing a hydrogen-containing material on a substrate (52), and one or more fuel sheets are formed into a non-cylindrical fuel sheet assembly my moving (e.g., bending) a portion of the fuel sheet (50) to position pellets adjacent to each other such that adjacent sides of the adjacent pellets lie in essentially parallel planes. A non-cylindrical fuel unit is produced from one or more of the fuel sheet assemblies. Fuel units can be replaceably disposed in a hydrogen generator, and fuel pellets can be selectively heated to produce hydrogen gas as needed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 5, 2014
    Publication date: December 25, 2014
    Inventors: Craig Huddleston, Thomas Kmetich, Richard Langan, Chad Law, Michael Stallard, Jason Stimits, Mark Vandayburg
  • Patent number: 8916305
    Abstract: Methods for generating hydrogen gas and power and related systems, including a hydrogen generator and a fuel cell system. The hydrogen generator includes a cartridge, a housing with a cavity to removably contain the cartridge, and an initiation system. The cartridge includes a casing; a plurality of pellets including a hydrogen containing material; a plurality of solid heat transfer members in contact with but not penetrating the casing; a hydrogen outlet in the casing; and a hydrogen flow path from each pellet to the hydrogen outlet. A plurality of heating elements is disposed inside the housing. Each heating element is disposed so heat can be conducted from the heating element through the casing to corresponding heat transfer member to initiate the release of hydrogen gas. The initiation system can selectively heat one or more pellets. Hydrogen gas can be provided to a fuel cell battery to generate power.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2014
    Assignee: Intelligent Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Thomas J. Kmetich, Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Olen Vanderleeden
  • Publication number: 20140295304
    Abstract: A hydrogen generator and a fuel cell system including a fuel cell battery and the hydrogen generator. The hydrogen generator includes a cartridge, a housing with a cavity to removably contain the cartridge, and an initiation system. The cartridge includes a casing; a plurality of pellets including a hydrogen containing material; a plurality of solid heat transfer members in contact with but not penetrating the casing; a hydrogen outlet in the casing; and a hydrogen flow path from each pellet to the hydrogen outlet. A plurality of heating elements is disposed inside the housing. When the cartridge is in the cavity, each heating element is disposed so heat can be conducted from the heating element and through the casing and corresponding heat transfer member to initiate the release of hydrogen gas. The initiation system can selectively heat one or more pellets to release hydrogen gas as needed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 11, 2014
    Publication date: October 2, 2014
    Inventors: Richard A. Langan, Jason L. Stimits, Chad E. Law, Russell H. Barton, Thomas J. Kmetich, Allison M. Fisher, Guanghong Zheng, Olen Vanderleeden