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The use of Nanocellular Carbon Aerogel-Like Material in PEM Fuel Cells

Nanocellular carbons (NCCs) are a new class of carbon aerogel-like solids. They are synthetic, lightweight foams made by the sol-gel method in which the solid matrix and pore spaces have nanometer-scale dimensions. They are characterized by low density, continuous porosity, high surface area, and fine cell/pore sizes along with good electrical conductivity and high capacitance.

Customized to Meet Your Needs

It is important to note that, as described, we have complete control over the production variables that control the mophology of the NCC/carbon composite. We recommend that the standard sheet be used as a starting point. If higher or lower densities of NCC, lower % of macro porosity, thicker or thinner material is desired to change the chemical, physical or electrical properties or desired water management, let us know and we can produce sheets to meet most needs. The carbon fibers provide for both structural integrity and high electrical conductivity, as can be seen from the data below.

NCC/Carbon paper electrodes are flexible and possesses enough strength for easy handling. Standard size sheets of 3.5" x 10" x 0.010" are available from stock. Larger sizes are available.


Using an SEM, the general nanostructure morphology of the NCC can be described as exteremely small interconnected colloidal-like particles that suround pore space in a "pearl necklace" structure. The size of the particle and pore space is a function of the density and polymerization chemistry used during the sol-gel process. Low density NCC with densities around 0.25 g/cm3 have the largest cell/pore sizes particle diameters up to 100 nanometers and pores that are at least 500 nanometers. Higher density materials with densities of > 0.8 nanometers have particle/pore sizes of less than 1000 Å.


Property Nanocellular Carbon NCC/Carbon Paper
Density - g/cm3 0.8 0.8
Surface Area m2/g 400 400
Average Pore - Size nm 0.7 60 nm
Electrical Resistivity (mohm-cm3) 10-40 10-40
Capacitance (F/g) 30 15-19

Information on How to Order & Price List

To order aerogels for evaluation, use the link below to get to our order form. The form includes current pricing.

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Update 07.26.00
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