Tanaka Precious Metals will be showcasing a number of its hydrogen fuel cell and electrolyzer technologies at FC EXPO 2016—12th International Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Expo,” at Tokyo Big Sight in March. Among the technologies on display will be its first-ever exhibit of electrode catalysts for polymer electrolyte electrolysis cells (PEECs).
These electrode catalysts are used as the anodes (oxygen-generation poles) in water electrolysis systems. The company says it has succeeded with catalyst surface control, and is currently mass producing the catalysts.
Other hydrogen and fuel-cell items Tanaka will display include:
Electrode catalysts for fuel cells (platinum catalysts, platinum/ruthenium catalysts and platinum/cobalt catalysts).
Palladium alloy hydrogen permeable films. Palladium allows the permeation of hydrogen gas, enabling the removal of impure gases.
Exhaust gas purifying catalysts for the treatment of impure gases resulting from the hydrogen purification process. Metal honeycomb catalysts that support precious metal catalysts are used in order to enable low-temperature combustion.
PROX catalysts. These catalysts use oxygen to selectively remove the carbon monoxide from reforming gas used in fuel cells. They feature high activity at a wide range of temperatures, from low to high, and even at a high space velocity, thanks to the high dispersion of precious metals that enables reduced precious metal loadings.
With general release of fuel cell vehicles, fiscal 2015 is forecast to be the biggest year ever for shipments of fuel cell electrode catalysts. At this exhibition, Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo will exhibit and show off all the fuel cell-related precious metal materials it has been developing and manufacturing over many years. Tanaka has exhibited at FC EXPO every year since it was first held.
The precious metals technology acquired over 130 years by Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo since its establishment in 1885 is utilized in the development of fuel cell electrode catalysts, which began in 1985.
With demand for residential-use fuel cells and the launch of fuel cell vehicles in recent years, Tanaka invested about ¥1 billion (US$8.8 million) in 2013 to build a dedicated plant, within its Kanagawa Prefecture plant, for the development and manufacture of fuel cell catalysts. It is developing systems for the stable supply of fuel cell catalysts in the expectation of even greater demand going forward.