Deteriorating urban air-quality, growing dependence on insecure energy sources, and global warming are forcing the re-examination of conventional energy conversion systems throughout the world. Although new combustion technologies emit far less toxic pollutants comprising hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides, carbon mono-oxide and particulates than in the past, the increasing energy demand is resulting in growing insistence to reduce pollution. At present, motor vehicles account for about one-half of the total hydrocarbon and nitrogen oxide pollution which combine to form ground-level ozone, commonly known as smog, that chokes many of the major urban centers of the world. However, the pollution level is also significantly influenced by stationary energy generation plants. This has brought in emission legislation all over the world, particularly in the light of the Kyoto Protocol, requiring the introduction of new energy conversion technologies and zero-emission vehicles. Among the various available electrochemical energy conversion systems fuel cell technology represents one of the most viable candidate solution to these drawbacks.
Fuel cells deliver energy at high efficiency by consuming electroactive chemicals that are supplied on-demand to the cell as in a conventional thermal combustion system.
The International Symposium “Fuel Cells: Materials and Technology Challenges”, through the contribution of experiences coming from several different disciplines, will focus major advances in materials science, processing and device manufacturing of the different fuel cell categories.
Original papers are solicited on all types of fuel cells. Of particular interest are recent developments of advanced fuel cell materials, novel fuel cell stack designs, emerging fuel cell technology, and optimization and breakthroughs in performance. Reviews of the state-of-the-art fuel cell performance for specific applications, including consumer devices, electric vehicles, and distributed energy systems, may also be submitted.
Contributions are invited in the following and related areas: