Title:
Solid-State Hydrogen Storage Device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A solid-state hydrogen storage device includes a steel cylinder accommodating a ceramic sintered body that has fine open spaces therein for storing hydrogen, a housing, which houses the steel cylinder, and a fire-retarding stuffing material stuffed in the housing around the steel cylinder for protection.



Inventors:
Peng, Chen-chien (Toufen Township, TW)
Application Number:
12/122903
Publication Date:
08/06/2009
Filing Date:
05/19/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D85/00
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Primary Examiner:
ALLEN, JEFFREY R
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Jackson Intellectual Property Group PLLC (Shipman, VA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A solid-state hydrogen storage device comprising: a steel cylinder, said steel cylinder comprising gas inlet pipe extending from a first end thereof for connection to a hydrogen supply source, a first control switch installed in said gas inlet pipe for controlling input of hydrogen into said steel cylinder, a gas outlet pipe extending from a second end thereof, and a second control switch installed in said gas outlet pipe for controlling output of hydrogen out of said steel cylinder through said gas outlet pipe; wherein: the solid-state hydrogen storage device further comprises: a ceramic sintered body accommodated in said steel cylinder, said ceramic sintered body having fine open spaces therein for storing hydrogen; a housing, which houses said steel cylinder, and a stuffing material stuffed in said housing around said steel cylinder.

2. The solid-state hydrogen storage device as claimed in claim 1, wherein said housing is made out of a metal selected from one of the materials including stainless steel, aluminum, aluminum alloy and iron.

3. The solid-state hydrogen storage device as claimed in claim 1, wherein said stuffing material is a fire retardant material.

4. The solid-state hydrogen storage device as claimed in claim 1, wherein said housing has two through holes through which said gas inlet pipe and said gas outlet pipe of said steel cylinder extend out of said housing.

5. The solid-state hydrogen storage device as claimed in claim 1, wherein said housing has two through holes through which said first control switch and said second control switch of said steel cylinder extend out of said housing.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

The present invention is a continuation-in-part of U.S. Ser. No. 12/068,004, entitled SOLID-STATE HYDROGRAN SUPPLY SYSTEM FOR VEHICLE.

BACKGROUND AND SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to hydrogen storage arrangement and more particularly, to a solid-state hydrogen storage device, which uses a sintered ceramic body in a steel cylinder for storing hydrogen in a stable status, lowering hydrogen storage cost and assuring high safety.

2. Description of the Related Art

There are known techniques to have hydrogen be stored in a pressure container in a compressed manner. A pressure container of this design requires much installation space. Its storage and delivery are complicated. Further, because hydrogen has a low burning point and is highly inflammable, the storage of hydrogen must consider the factor of safeness. US2006/0144238 A1 discloses a hydrogen storage device that has a hydrogen-storing alloy set in a beehive structure for storing hydrogen. This design still has drawbacks as follows:

1. The hydrogen storage capacity of the hydrogen-storing alloy is limited, and in consequent, the hydrogen storage cost is high.

2. During hydrogen suction and releasing actions of the hydrogen-storing alloy, micro powder particles are produced and accumulated in the bottom side inside the container. When a certain amount of micro powder particles are accumulated in the bottom side inside the container, the container tends to deform or damage due to uneven distribution of pressure, affecting safeness.

3. During fabrication, it requires much time and labor to have the hydrogen-storing alloy be installed in the beehive structure.

SUMMARY OP THE INVENTION

The present invention has been accomplished under the circumstances in view. It is therefore the main object of the present invention to provide a solid-state hydrogen storage device, which has high storage capacity to reduce hydrogen storage cost It is another n object of the present invention to provide a solid-state hydrogen storage device, which assures hydrogen storage stability and safety.

To achieve these and other objects of the present invention, the solid-state hydrogen storage device comprises a steel cylinder, a sintered ceramic body accommodated in the steel cylinder and having fin open spaces therein for storing hydrogen in a stable status, a housing, which houses the steel cylinder, and a fire-retarding stuffing material stuffed in die housing around the steel cylinder for protection.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

FIG. 1 is a plain view of a solid-state hydrogen storage device in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 2 is an end view of the solid-state hydrogen storage device in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 3 is an exploded view in an enlarged scale of the solid-state hydrogen storage device in accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 4 is an elevational assembly view of FIG. 3.

FIG. 5 is a longitudinal sectional side view of FIG. 4.

FIG. 6 illustrates the steel cylinder embedded in stuffing material inside a metal housing according to the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring to FIGS. 1-5, a solid-state hydrogen storage device in accordance with the present invention is shown comprising a steel cylinder 1.

The steel cylinder 1 comprises a cylinder body 11, which accommodates a cylindrical ceramic sintered body 2. The cylindrical ceramic sintered body 2 has fine open spaces 20 therein (see FIGS. 3 and 5). The steel cylinder 1 further comprises a first end cover 12 and a second end cover 13 respectively covered on the two opposite ends of the cylinder body 11 and fixedly secured thereto by welding, a gas inlet pipe 511 extended from the first end cover 12 for connection to a hydrogen supply source (not shown), a first control switch 51 installed in the gas inlet pipe 511 for controlling the supply of hydrogen from the hydrogen supply source into the cylindrical ceramic sintered body 2 in the cylinder body 11 of the steel cylinder 1, a gas outlet pipe 521 extended from the second end cover 13, a second control switch 52 installed in the gas outlet pipe 521 for controlling output of hydrogen out of the cylinder body 11 of the steel cylinder 1 through the gas outlet pipe 521, and a pressure gage 512 installed in the first control switch 51 for measuring the inside pressure of the cylinder body 11.

By means of the aforesaid arrangement, hydrogen is stored in the fine and irregularly distributed open spaces 20 in the ceramic sintered body 2 inside the steel cylinder 1 steadily. This storage arrangement is highly safe, and capable for storing a big amount of hydrogen. When the steel cylinder 1 is empty, the gas inlet pipe 511 is connected to a hydrogen supply source, and the first control switch 51 is switched on to let hydrogen go from the hydrogen supply source into the cylinder body 11 for storage. Further, a safety valve (not shown) may be installed in the gas inlet pipe 511 to assure hydrogen storage safety of the steel cylinder 1.

Further, fine wire gauzes 14 are mounted in the steel cylinder 1 between the first end cap 12 and one end of the ceramic sintered body 2 to prevent escape of ceramic particles. The mesh of the wire gauzes 14 is smaller than the particle size of the ceramic particles.

Further, at least one wire gauze 15 is mounted in the steel cylinder 1 between the second end cap 13 and the other end of the ceramic sintered body 2 to prevent escape of ceramic particles.

Further, the ceramic sintered body 2 can be a single piece ceramic sintered body that has a dimension approximately equal to the inside holding space of the steel cylinder 1. Alternatively, the ceramic sintered body 2 can be formed of multiple ceramic sintered sub-bodies that are arranged together and accommodated in the steel cylinder 1.

Referring to FIG. 6, the solid-state hydrogen storage device further comprises a metal housing 42 mat houses the steel cylinder 1, and a stuffing material 41 stuffed in the metal housing 42 around the steel cylinder 1. The stuffing material 41 is a heat-insulating fire-retarding material, for example, fire retardant sponge. The metal housing 42 can be made out of stainless steel, iron, aluminum, aluminum alloy, or any other suitable metal, comprised of a hollow frame shell 421 and two cover plates 422. The cover plates 422 are respectively covered on and welded to the top and bottom open sides of the hollow frame shell 421. The hollow frame shell 421 has through holes 4211 for the passing of the gas inlet pipe 511 and the gas outlet pipe 521. The cover plates 422 have a respective through hole 4221 through which the control switches 51 and 52 respectively extend to the outside of the metal housing 42.The hollow frame shell 421 further has a hole (not shown) through which the pressure gage 512 extends to the outside of the metal housing 42.

In conclusion, the invention provides a solid-state hydrogen storage device that has the following features and advantages:

1. Hydrogen is stored in the fin open spaces 20 of the ceramic sintered body 2 inside the steel cylinder 1, assuring high stability and safe The high storage capacity of the ceramic sintered body 2 inside the steel cylinder 1 reduces the storage cost Further, the design of the steel cylinder 12 facilitates input of hydrogen into the fine open spaces 20 of the ceramic sintered body 2.

2. The heat-insulating fire-retarding material 41 surrounds the steel cylinder 1 inside the metal housing 42, assuring high safely.

3. The ceramic sintered body 2 can conveniently be loaded in the steel cylinder 1, and therefore the installation of the present invention is simple.

Although a particular embodiment of the invention has been described in detail for purposes of illustration, various modifications and enhancements may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. Accordingly, the invention is not to be limited except as by the appended claims.