A portable direct methanol fuel cell power station for long-term internet of things applications

Chung Jen Chou, Shyh Biau Jiang, Tse Liang Yeh, Li Duan Tsai, Ku Yen Kang, Ching Jung Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


With regard to the best electro-chemical efficiency of an active direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC), the stacks and their balance of plant (BOP) are complex to build and operate. The yield of making the large-scale stacks is difficult to improve. Therefore, a portable power station made of multiple simpler planar type stack modules with only appropriate semi-active BOPs was developed. A planar stack and its miniature BOP components are integrated into a semi-active DMFC stack module for easy production, assembly, and operation. An improved energy management system is designed to control multiple DMFC stack modules in parallel to enhance its power-generation capacity and stability so that the portability, environmental tolerance, and long-term durability become comparable to that of the active systems. A prototype of the power station was tested for 3600 h in an actual outdoor environment through winter and summer. Its performance and maintenance events are analyzed to validate its stability and durability. Throughout the test, it maintained the daily average of 3.3Wpower generation with peak output driving capability of 12Wsuitable for Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3547
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 2020


  • Direct methanol fuel cell
  • Energy management system
  • In-field test
  • Internet of Things
  • Long-term
  • Multi stacks
  • Portable power


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