Burning issue

Fisher, Richard
January 2005
Engineer (00137758);1/14/2005, Vol. 293 Issue 7666, p14
The article reports that tiny fiber-optic temperature sensors inside fuel cells could stop burnout failure and allow designers to improve power efficiency, according to inventors in the U.S. Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have developed miniature diagnostic sensors that sit inside fuel cells as they function and monitor hot spots. These sensors work in all types of fuel cell, including low-temperature proton-exchange membrane fuel cells used in vehicles and also solid-oxide cells for power plants at over 1,000'C, the team claimed. Stephen Allison of ORNL's Engineering Science and Technology division said these sensors have a temperature response time of one-tenth of a second.


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