Atsumitec Co Ltd showed a motorbike equipped with the "Synergy Cell," which is made by combining thermoelectric conversion elements and a fuel cell, and the "Exhaust Gas Power Generation System," which is made by using the Synergy Cell.
The motorbike was exhibited at Innovation Japan 2013, which took place from Aug 29 to 30, 2013, in Tokyo. It can generate power of up to 200W, improving mileage by 2-3%, Atsumitec said. It was developed with help from a support program of Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST).
The Synergy Cell consists of an SOFC (solid oxide fuel cell) tube and oxide-based thermoelectric conversion elements. Specifically, the high-temperature parts of n- and p-type thermoelectric conversion elements are attached on the SOFC tube. And the motorbike came with about 300 cells.
Both remaining materials, heat used for power generation
Atsumitec combined the SOFC and thermoelectric conversion element, considering that they will produce a synergy effect at the time of using exhaust gas. Specifically, the SOFC generates power by using remaining hydrogen and carbon hydride in exhaust gas. Moreover, the temperature of motorbike's exhaust gas is as high as 650°C, which is within the operating temperature range of SOFC.
On the other hand, the thermoelectric conversion element generates power by using not only the heat of exhaust gas but also the heat generated by the reaction in the SOFC (150°C). Even when exhaust gas is stopped and the SOFC is not functioning, the element generates power by using remaining heat. Therefore, power can be continuously supplied, Atsumitec said.