International conference features Kettering profs

Aug 29, 2008

Kettering researchers shared their research into proton exchange membrane and Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Laboratory at a fuel cell conference in Denver.

Several Kettering University faculty members and post-doctorate researchers participated in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ Sixth International Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology Conference in mid-June.

The conference, held in Denver, Colo., June 16-18, provided a forum for the exchange of information about cutting-edge technology in the fuel cell field, including material and fabrication processes, fuel processing and storage, cell, stack and system modeling. Engineers from Korea, Japan, England, Portugal, Switzerland and other parts of the globe attended as representatives from academic, industry and government laboratories.

The conference addressed a number of critical subjects, including transportation systems, stationary systems and specialized systems for wireless technology, micro-miniature devices and hydrogen recovery. In addition, the event featured working displays of high-temperature and low-temperature fuel cells, and selected contributors presented more than 100 technical papers.

Dr. Etim Ubong, associate professor of Mechanical Engineering (ME), served as one of the regional co-chairs/organizers of this event and chaired three sessions. Susanta K. Das and Panini Kolavennu, post-doctorate researchers in ME, Dr. Gianfranco Di Giuseppe, assistant professor of ME, and Dr. K. Joel Berry, head of the ME Dept., co-presented papers with colleagues from other organizations for the conference sessions noted below.

  • Experimental Performance Evaluation of a High Temperature PEM Fuel Cell at Different Temperatures: Etim Ubong, Susanta K. Das, K.J. Berry and Antonio Reis.
  • Experimental Evaluation of Co-Poisoning of an Air-Breathing High Temperature PEM Fuel Cell Stack: Susanta K. Das, Antonio Reis, Etim Ubong and K.J. Berry.
  • CFD Analysis of a Two-Phase Flow Model For a Low Temperature Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell: Susanta K. Das and K.J. Berry
  • On-Board Hydrogen for High Temperature PEM Fuel Cell Stack by Methane and Methanol Steam Reforming: Panini Kolavennu, Sustana K. Das and K.J. Berry.
  • A Modeling Study of the Effect of Cathode Delamination on SOFC Performance: Gianfranco DiGiuseppe and Gladys Morin Licon.

According to Ubong, Kettering University faculty and researchers continue to conduct computational and experimental research into fuel cells as well as publish papers and chair sessions at major conferences. “Ketteringis building a reputation for fuel cell research and we’ve had success publishing and presenting our work at conferences throughout the world,” he said, adding that one difference between Kettering and other institutions is that faculty members often author work that is co-authored by current undergraduate and graduate students. Kettering was the only institution that presented papers at this conference focusing on proton exchange membrane (PEM). In addition, the University is one of only three institutions of higher education with a comprehensive Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) Laboratory.

Ubong will also chair a fuel cell session organized by the Electrical Manufacturing & Coil Winding (EMCWA) Conference Nov. 21-23. Kettering faculty and students will present two papers at this conference and Ubong said that students in his MECH-526: Fuel Cell & Science Engineering course are the main authors on these works. The EMCWA has to date contributed more than $67,000 in scholarship support to Kettering over the past 15 years.

Ubong is also an executive member of the ASME International Fuel Cell conference organization, which is responsible for organization of future fuel cell conferences in Europe and the U.S. Sponsors of June conference in Denver included the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Kettering University and the National Fuel Cell Research Center at the University of California—Irvine, among others.

To learn more about fuel cell studies at Kettering, visit

Written by Gary J. Erwin