Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Corporation - Alternative Energy
Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Corporation develops and manufactures disposable methanol fuel cartridges that provide the energy source for fuel cell powered notebook computers, mobile phones, military equipment and other applications being developed by electronics OEMs, such as Samsung and Toshiba, and other companies.
Fuel cells are electrochemical devices that efficiently and cleanly convert a fuel, such as methanol, into electricity without burning. The fuel cell is permanently built into a notebook computer in the space where the battery is now. A small disposable fuel cartridge is inserted into the computer which provides the fuel for the fuel cell.
The advantages of a fuel cell are longer-lasting power compared to a rechargeable battery, instantaneous recharging by simply replacing the disposable fuel cartridge, non-toxic disposal, and light weight. As a result, methanol fuel cells are being developed by many companies as a new, clean alternative power source for portable electronic devices. Fuel cells offer freedom from the electrical grid which is important for many business and professional applications.
Fuel cell powered notebook computers and mobile phones are projected to use approximately 100 disposable fuel cartridges during their workable lives and represent a recurring and potentially very large revenue stream. It has been projected that up to 22% of notebook computers and 2.5% of mobile phones will be powered by fuel cells in the future, which would result in demand for more than three billion cartridges per year.
Methanol fuel cells and fuel cartridges are efficient, clean and safe and have been approved to be carried on airplanes by the US Department of Transportation and The International Civil Aviation Organization. These approvals are expected to encourage faster and more widespread adoption of fuel cells for portable electronic devices.
Patented Clean Energy Technology
DMFCC has licensed an extensive portfolio of direct methanol fuel cell patents from Pasadena-based California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and the University of Southern California (USC). Caltech manages NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) where the direct methanol fuel cell was invented in collaboration with professors at USC. The 65 issued and 33 pending patents cover direct liquid hydrocarbon fuel cells (including direct methanol fuel cells), electrode construction, membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs), fuel cell systems, methanol sensors and filters, water recovery, monopolar geometry, and electrolysis of methanol to form hydrogen. Access to these patents is needed for companies making, using or selling direct methanol fuel cells.
DMFCC also has several patent applications pending on disposable fuel cartridges, their valves and connectors to fuel cells.
Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Corporation and its partners are working to develop the worldwide infrastructure to manufacture, fill and distribute disposable methanol fuel cartridges. This global capability is needed to support widespread adoption of fuel cell powered devices. DMFCC’s cartridge manufacturing partners are experienced and trusted suppliers to a wide range of industries including electronics OEMs.
Through its patent portfolio, DMFCC also offers patent protection for OEMs and manufacturers of direct methanol and other liquid hydrocarbon fuel cells. DMFCC will partner with fuel cell and electronics manufacturers worldwide to bring their fuel cell products to market within cost-effective parameters. DMFCC develops custom-designed cartridges for partners’ varying applications while ensuring the finished products meet technical and safety requirements and are available at an attractive price.
DMFCC is partnered with Samsung and other companies engaged in fuel cell development and applications. To support the ongoing needs of our customers—including commercial introduction of liquid fuel cells as an economical and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional batteries—DMFCC is forming a worldwide supply infrastructure of cartridge manufacturing, methanol filling and distribution.
With state of the art proprietary products, a global network of manufacturing partners, and a comprehensive suite of fundamental fuel cell patents, DMFCC has a mechanism in place to commercialize this exciting new technology. Since the cartridges are a disposable consumable item, they are analogous to razor blades and printer cartridges and, as such, represent a significant ongoing recurring revenue stream. According to Frost & Sullivan, the market for commercial fuel cells for portable electronics devices is expected to reach more than $600 million by 2013.