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J Am Chem Soc. 2008 Aug 13;130(32):10456-7. doi: 10.1021/ja8024214. Epub 2008 Jul 22.

On-chip fuel cell: micro direct methanol fuel cell of an air-breathing, membraneless, and monolithic design.

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  • 1Department of Applied Chemistry, Waseda University, Tokyo 169-8555, Japan.


This paper proposes a novel design for a microfuel cell as an on-chip power source and demonstrates its fabrication and operation to prove the concept. Its simple design is important from the viewpoints of fabrication (e.g., replication), integration, and compatibility with other microdevices. In testing, the prototype cell was able to generate electric power (maximum: ca. 1.4 microW) on methanol without pumps under both neutral and acidic conditions. As for the size, the electrode part of the cell (two cathodes and one anode) is 400 microns in width and 6 mm in length. The evaluation demonstrated that the proposed design is a promising on-chip power source for miniature devices.

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