Kobe Steel Develops Titanium Separator for Fuel Cell

Kobe Steel announced on Wednesday the firm developed new titanium material adoptable to separator of fuel cell. The development, titanium foil coated by carbon based material, realized almost double conductivity compared with conventional stainless steel separator which is widely used for fuel cell. Kobe Steel plans to commercialize the original titanium material along with the market growth of fuel cell.

Fuel cell is consisted of many cell layers to react hydrogen and oxygen. Separator is tucked between cells. Major separator materials are corrosion-resistant metals and carbon. One fuel cell sometimes requires several hundred separators.

Kobe Steel coated highly corrosion-resistant titanium foil with low-cost carbon based material. Contact resistance, which suggests good conductivity of material by low value, was 3-4 milliohms per square centimeter, almost half of stainless separator.

Light weight and high strength of titanium contributes to downsizing and weight saving of fuel cell. Titanium can also lengthen fuel cell life since titanium doesn’t elute iron ion which is said to damage fuel cell.