Big Players Push Ahead For Fuel Cell Powered Portables

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Big Players Push Ahead For Fuel Cell Powered Portables

In the quest for long-term seperation from AC outlets, many large manufacturers and companies are racing to create a practical alternative to axe the battery for powering portable devices. Fuel cell technology has been all the rage over the last year or so as the chosen means to do just that – replace the battery. With batteries there are several disadvantages besides limited power away from an AC outlet. These include weight, charge times, limited charge cycles and disposal of potentially hazardous materials.

Samsung, Sharp and Toshiba have all launched projects to push fuel cell technology ahead. Additionally IBM and Sanyo have recently worked together to produce a prototype fuel cell to power ThinkPad notebooks/Tablets. It is exciting to see the fuel cell battery alternative finally start to emerge from fiction to fact. Several other big players have jumped aboard as well.

A current ThinkPad model docked on a Sanyo fuel cell.

Recently, Fuel Cell Works posted a great piece on the current state of fuel cell development for use in portable computers and electronics. Additionally, the article goes into great detail in regards to “cell types” and the latest industry advancements.


Got Power?-Fuel Cells Offer a Solution

Publication Date:16-July-2005
10:29 AM US Eastern Timezone 
Source:Jennifer Gangi
As the world goes wireless, with smaller devices providing more functions, power density and weight are the real challenges. Fuel cells offer a solution, as companies join the race to bring the first products to the market.

The world has gone wireless, and as laptops, cellular phones, PDAs, and other consumer electronic devices get smaller and offer more functions, battery size, power density and weight are becoming a real challenge. As with everything, consumers expect more “bang for their buck,” no matter how small the product; so companies have to seek out possible solutions to solve these problems.

Fuel cells for portable power and rechargeable battery replacement are a very promising solution to these problems and more and more companies are joining in the race to bring the first products to the market.

A fuel cell is an electrochemical device that takes advantage of the natural attraction that hydrogen has for oxygen. In structure, a fuel cell is much like a battery: it has two electrodes separated by an electrolyte. But in use it is very different from a battery. It will not “run down” and never needs recharging. A fuel cell will provide useful electricity and heat as long as hydrogen fuel is supplied. Fuel cells are reliable, efficient and clean…

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