Stationary Fuel Cells: How do They Work?

April 2nd, 2011

Stationary fuel cells cause smaller emissions than other alternative energy sources to gasoline. Stationary fuel cells are made up of an electrolyte and two electrodes. The function of the electrolyte determines which type the fuel cell is. These cells release electrical energy by converting energy from a fuel. Electricity is caused when the fuel and oxidant each move over an electrode.
The stationary fuel cells are at least twice as powerful as combustion in driving vehicles. A fuel such as hydrogen or hydrocarbon is brought into the anode of the fuel cell. The oxidant enters through a cathode to enter the fuel cell. After a fuel atom splits into an electron and a proton, the proton enters into the electrolyte. The electrolyte will stay in the cell while the electron and proton will come together with the oxidant and fuel.
The processes in stationary fuel cells work very differently than gasoline in releasing energy. To stay active, a stationary fuel cell needs fuel to be continually added. In this electrochemical cell the energy is not stored. Stationary fuel cells can help the environment because of how they work. Stationary fuel cells provide a significantly cleaner and more efficient energy source.

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