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PNNL rolls out its clean energy tech at ARPA-E
Date:2/22/2013

nto our cars. Natural gas must be compressed into a pressurized fuel tank to increase its energy density. PNNL engineer Kevin Simmons and his team are developing special, lightweight fuel tanks that make better use of the limited space available in vehicles. PNNL's fuel tank design uses a unique manufacturing method called superplastic forming. The method involves welding together metal sheets at specific points and blowing air in between the sheets to expand them, forming internal chambers like an air mattress. The expanded metal tank will conform to more of a vehicle's space than traditional cylinder tanks. It also helps the cars weigh less, which makes them more fuel-efficient. The PNNL tank is expected to cost $1,500 to make and pack 12 megajoules of energy per kilogram, about twice the energy density of today's metal compressed natural gas tanks. Lincoln Composites is a partner in the project.

Rare earth-free magnet makes electric motors cheaper with more abundant materials
Booth 1114

From wind turbines to electric vehicle motors, magnets play an essential role in a variety of today's electronic devices. But there's a limited supply of the rare earth minerals that are traditionally used in these magnets. In particular, dysprosium is added to increase a magnet's operating temperature, which is high in motors. But dysprosium has been named a critical material with unstable availability. PNNL materials scientist Jun Cui and his team are developing a manganese-based nano-composite magnet that doesn't contain dysprosium or any other rare earth mineral. The new magnet can operate at 200 degrees Celsius. The team's immediate goal is to make a permanent magnet with 10 MGOe, or megagauss-oersteds, a measurement of magnetic energy. With additional funding, the team will work to develop a 20-MGOe magnet, which would be more useful for a broader set of commercial applications. Project partners include PNNL, the universities of Maryland and Tex
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Contact: Franny White
franny.white@pnnl.gov
509-375-6904
DOE/Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

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