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Energy DepQt Co~~ept


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Presented at
International Automotive Congress
January 1]-].'), D6!)
Published by:
SOCIETY OF AUTOMOTIVE ENGiNEERS, INC.

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292
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650051, ... t
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Energy Depot Fuel Production:


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and.Utilization

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• 1
P. G. Grimes
Research Oiv .. Allis;Chalmers Mfg. Co.

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MODERN FIELD ARMIES today face an increasing fuel logis' Inc .. as a subcontractor (oJ.) •. In this study many conceiv-
tics problem. The major portion of the supplies brought to able means to power vehicles indirectly wfth nuclear energy
a theater. of -operations is fuel for vehicles, electric power was c?nsidered ... Numerous...:riteria or guidelines were used
generation. and heating. All studies poim to an even greater in evaluatton and selection of attractiv~ energy depot sys-
increase in fuel' consumption in the future. tems. Such systems have to be mobile, highly efficient,
Use of nuclear energy in the field is a potential solution small in size and weight, and capable of operating essen-
to this pro,blem. However. limitations of size and weight tially independent of supply. The energy depots must be
imposed oy' ptesent nuclear technology prohibit the use of road. air. and sea transportable. Thus, all equipment must
vehicles indiVidually powered with nuclear energy. There- be. contained in modules'. not e~ceeding 30,000 lb in weight
fore.the nuclear energy must be converted to energy forms, and '8.5 x 8.5 x 24'ft in dimensions. Source of raw mate-
that can be used to power individual vehicles. rials for the energy deppt is limited to air and water. Eanh
In this concept, energy output of a mobile nuclear re- as a raw material is eliminated because of variable com-
actor would be processed to storable energy forms readily position. Main'tenance materials must be minimal permit-
transportable to the energy consumers. This energy depot ting extended operation free of outside supply. Energy forms
would be mobile and could accompany the field army in should, be storable tb . permit a supply buildup for use during .
its operation, The concept would allow an extended oper- movement of the energy depot. The conversion of nuclear
ation <Yf field units independent of Outside fuel supplies. energy to "power at the wheels" requires efficiency to mini-
Field commanders would have greater freedom of opera- m ize the depot's size and weight. .
tion. thus prOViding an opportunity to seize and maintain .Using these criteria'. analysis of potential energy depot
the initiative. systems leads to the general selection of syst-ems which con-
ENERGY DHOT fEASIBIUTY STUpY - A feasibility study
of the energy depot concept wa~ und~itaken by Allis-Chal- • Numbers in parentheses designate References at end of
mers Manufacturing Co. with Air Products and Chemicals, raper.

, ABSTRACT-----'------------(7'"""---------------------
ease of transportation. Alternately, liquid. ammOllla can
The Army's fuel 'logistics problem could be'reduced or be produced hom the hydrogen and ~itrogen extracted from
e'liminated by use of nuclelH energy in the fielc;l. In this air through liquefaction of air
concept. nuclear energy is convened to chimical fuels with, These 'iuels can be used most etjiciently in fuel cell s)ls-
locally available raw materials. Hydrogen can be produced· ,terns. Tpe electric powered vehicles in these cases may have
by electrolysis of water with electricity from a nuclear reo p,ctistin<;i·militaryadvantages. The fuels can be used to power
actor system, It can be converted to liqukl hydrogen f o r ' mOtlifi~d combustion engines.
281
P. G. G;RlMES ENE!

v'ert the nut lear energy to chemical fii~ls. These fuels Gan in the energy depot concept. Considerations of physical E
,. be stored. their energy transported in . <fur easily divisible " properties of compounds. energy content of fuels/oxidants, CON
form. and they can be used for heating <and to power I'e· and efficiencies and methods of synthesis. aI1d state -of, the· then
v hicles, art of various powetplants rapidly reduce the list. Of all fuel
Two broad chemical approaches can be employed in the process~ c9,nsidered, only the sodium metal process and the eithc
energy depot concept; the open cycle and thel~losed cycle. methanol/c'austic system survived for further analysis.
In the open cycle process. the chemical fuel ~:synthesized ·In the sodium process, sodium hydroxide' solution at the
from raw materials (ail('llnd water) at the deP6t site. The depot is electrochemica'lly con.verted to metallic sodium,
ftJel is then transported tMihe user, There fuel is oxid ized. water. and oxygen, Sodium a'nd water are',stored and, trans'
energy is extracted. and oxidation products .of the fuel are ported to the using vehicle. They are used .there' to produce
discharged to the atmospheJe. In the closed cycle process. electric power for tlie veHicle dri~e. The ~diu~ is con:.
~ the oxidation products are ~etained at the user. re~~rned to , verted to sodiu'm amaillam in an electrochemical, process
the depot. and reprocessed to fuel. producing electrical energy. Amalgam. water, and air are.
(n the open cycle prqcess, only the elements present.. in then supplied to a sodium amalgam/air fU~1 cell that pro-
air and.l"ater are available to synthesize potential fuels and duces more electrical ene~Y'for the vehicle drive. The
. oxidants. sodium hydroXide solution product is returned 'to the depot
Consideration of the physical properties, the metllqds and for reprocessing. Alter'$ate,ly, the vehicle may return to the
efficiency of synthesis, the energy content, and the usage of depot where electrical energy is fed into the electrochemr'
compounds reduced the potential fuels to' liquid hydrogen cal devices. 'This reverses the process above and produces,
and the hydrogen carrier. ltquid amm'onia. Potential ox!· sodium metal. oxygenand waterfro,rn'the sodium hydrOXide.
dants were reduced to air and liquid oxygen. This process is analogous to the rechargirtg of secondary bat·
The liquid hydrogen synthesis process involves conversion teries. The sodium process is potentially very efficient, but
of nuclear energy to electrical energy. electrolysis of lVater in an early state of development (2-4). Operationalan<l
to hydrogen. follolVed, by liquefaction of hydrogen. Ammo· tactical diaracteriSrics of the system require further anal-
nia is prepared by reaction of thE" hydrogen with nitrogen ysis before a system selection.
, produced by liquefaction and fractIonal distillation of air, In the methanol/caustic system. sodium bicarbonate at
Both processes are basically techniques of densificalion of the depot is reduced with hydrogen to methanol and 'sodium
hydrogen for storage and transport. hydroXide. These are carried to the uSilig vehicle, Metha·
'Radiolyti'c 'decomposition .of water and other chemo· nol is used in a methanol/air fuel cell and to produce el~c'
nuclear synthesis processes Were found to be of 101V effi· trical energy' for the vehicle drive, The oxidation products
ciency. and the synthesis product purification process com- are returned to the depot as sodium bicarbonate solution,
plicatedfuel production. Direct thermal deQQfnposition of The total weight of the vehicle drive based upon the state,·
water requires reaction temperatures too l1igh for an anrac- "of·the~art of methanol cells eliminated this system in initial
tile process. Indirect thermal decompositioD of water using studies. Rf;cent advances in methanol utilization efficiency
intermediate reaction steps with thermally regenerable may make this system attractive following further ~Aalysis.
chemicals does not appear to offer a highly efficient erocess"".. Ener~~ fuels need to be used lVith high efficiency
for hydrogen productlon. 'c.,,: to utilJc ,the nuclear energy most effectively, The feasl'
In the closed cycle processes. almost any chemical oxi- , "'-:PililY analysis showed that hydrogen and ammonia could be
Jation reduction process has potential as an energy carner used mOSl efficiently in fuel cells iO produce power at the
user .

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Fig, 1 . Artist concept of liquid hydrogen energy depot
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ENERGY DEPOT FUEL PRODUCTION AND UTILIZA TlO~ 283

ENERGY DEPOT FUEL PRODUCTION AND UTILiZATION study was to define more clearly the characteristics (weight,
CONCEPTUAL DESIGN - Allis-Chalmers with Air Products volume, ptocesses, and performance) of 'the depots and ,
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then undertook a conceptual design study of energy depot vehicles designed for these two fl,lels. A fuel-cell-powered
fuel production plants, and fuel cell powered vehicles using armored personnel carrier, based on the~113. was selected
eith~r liquid hydrogen or ammonia (5), The object of tltis for tlie vehicular study.

-- - -- -- - -- - - - - - -- - - - --,
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EV4PORATOR
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RAW'
WATER
PUMP wY
TURBINE r
EXHAUIT I
' -_ _J BLOWOOWN 7\0 F I
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PURE
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rELECTROL'TIIS PLANT - i;YDROGEH uauLF;-cT;'D; P~A;T - - - - --l


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,RADIATOR
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HyDROGEN
I:l:EGENERATIVE
HE"" H, ~XP"'NDfR
EXCHANGER

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\11 V A.LVES Hi RECVC:.. E
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FRO" \TORAOE
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Fig, 3 ' Liquid hydrogen process f!0\./ diagram


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Other studies have shown the feasibility of mobile nuclear
reactor electrk power plants. For this analysis. a·system
~able of producing 3000 kw of electrical energy was as-
sumM,
F~r purp">oses of this study. the conc~ptual d~gns were
k
ment 1I01.,.s the water
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;urificllti~n'
P.

therm I energy from the turbine exhaust (Fig. 2),' However,


the greater significance of this arrangement is that it re-
9. GRlMES

plant to use the waste

quires only a short length of eiectrical cable to ~onnect the


turbine alternator to the electrolysis plant. Since this plant
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priected to the late 1960's state- 9l:the-art representing utilizes about 80"/0 of the electrical power, a significant re-
prototype energy d'epots and "ehielt,s as designed after com- duction in'the weight of electrical cabletoeeded by the ..
pletion of an extensive development program. However. energy dlipot is al1~ed, This electrolysis module also con'
the selected conceptual designs are based upon firm engi- tains thE;' circuit bmakers for the total plant. R'aw 'water ~
neering principles. supplied to ~he p.!lrification plant 'on the electrolysi.ule /
Much of the data used to deve'lop these conceptual de- by a pump located' outside the reactor exclusio., radius. A \
signs was made available to th~ project from the company small high pressure hose is used to ttanspon the gaseous
and governmertt sponsored research in our Research Labora- hydrogen from the electrolysis plant to the liquefaction
tory. The electrolysis system '''as developed exclusively plant, .
from company spon'sored research. The fuel cell systems The ~ydrogen'liqUefaction~ant is contained on two
. . . described ",ere developed through our o"'n programs and modules located adjacent to ea other outside the exclu-
contracts sponsored by NAS A, the Air Force. and the Army. sion radius. All COld"eqUipment~in.;'two insulated cold'
boxes on the hydrogen liquefier cold equipmem module.
LIQUID HYDROGEN FUEL PRODUCTION This module also contains the expaSlders for r'he hydrogen
,. rtcycle a\ld nitrogen refrigeration loop. The two major
FACILIT,Y DESCRIPTION - An artist concept of a liquid compressors, the hydrogen recycle and nitrogen recyclecom-
hydrogen energy depot 'is"shown in Fig. 1. It consists of four pressor, are mounted on the hydrogen liquefier compressor
modules. exclusive of the reactor system. 'During QBeration -fl'lodule,
the electrolysis module -- containjng the ",ater purifica- The control module .. containing the centralized control
tion plant. the water electrolysis plant. and reclifiers - - is panel for the overall energy depot. is adjacent to the two
located adjacent to the nuclear powerplant. This arrange- liquefaction plant modules. Space is provided on this mod-

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,e-ctaie", and
(;I'"cvil b.colcen

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c<Jr~ "20
't~1Uge-~.

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.,..;yed bed de Ionizer

spoo: ~ f~, \,C),;rtq wost" "'("01


h:ilpI '.1\>"'\0 tm""p-:.rl

Fig. 4 - Electrolysis module


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DUCTION AND UTILIZATION \ 285


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ule for depot maintenance operations,·supplies. and for car- e~imi;;ated the need for feed compressors for that ~ystem
rying the cables and hose during transit. which resulted in a weight saving for the lotal fuel produc-
PROCESS DESCRIPtION - The process system flow tion plant. In addition, operation of the electrolysis plant
diagram for the liquid hydrogen en'ergy' depot shown in at high pressure eliminates the inefficierrciesof the mechan-
fig. 3. can be described in terms of the· water PJijfica- ical and cycle losses of tlle"hyd[(~gen fe-ed 'compressor and "
tion plant,' electrolysis plant, and hydrogen liquefaction ,increases the product ourput. The theore'ical increase in
plant. ", . power. 1.a6 kw ~r / lb Hir required f eri\ting t!).e elec-
Watet P·urific3tion - A wflter purification plant is required
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trolysis cells at 1840 psia, over at required for cells oper-
to make the raw water suitable for \!.se in the ele~olysis
ating at ~tmospheric pressur w<ts lised (o(.this desig~ st~y ...
plant. Contaminants in the water would remain in the elec-
It is proJ.ected that the high pressure electrolysis process w.ill
trolysis cells. The raw water (+- 6 gpm) is heated in an at-
require 19.86 kw hr lIb H produced.
mospheric pressure boiler by the exhaust gas of the reactor \ ·.2. '-.-,
gas turbine. One half'to one third of the raw water is - The eiectrolysis module is illustrated in Fig. 4. Electro"
evaporated, and the remainder ,continually drained from lysis cell modules connected ~lectrically in series parallel
the boiler to reduce scale formation on the heat-transfer are assen'lbledin multicell groups fitted into pressute tanks.
surfaces. . These modules (Fig. 5) are ·arranged in-four grOlf'ps of six
ElectrolysisPIant - In this 'study it was found desirable each. Eachgroup has a rated input of 700 v.
to operate the electrolysis celli above the pressures required Gas outlets from each electrolysis module are connected
f?r the feed stream of the hydrogen liquefaction plant. This \0 one of the foUl collection manifolds. which conduct the
....

F
(

02 scrubber . H scrubber
2
/.
8 ft 4

trap

electrolysis
KOH-0
multi-cell modules 2
separator

Fig. 5 - Electrolysis cell module stack

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P. G. GRIMES

1,1 ,--------,-------,----T-----,--~-_,
fluids to the centrally located 'gas-electrolyte collection and p
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se'paration eguipm~nt, serving all four circuits. Remotely e
operable valves-provide for isolation of any of -the four il
1.0 ........- - - - J
f-...---i----i~--_+--- tl
independent circuits. Pressure throughout the ~m is regu-
lated by an arrangement of control valves at the outlets o~
the electrolysis plant. ' d
, .e f-----+-j~---!-~ Individual electrolysiS cells' are of the series bipol.... 'n
d'esign. Major components of each' celfcbrtsist 'of a hy- e
.. drogen electrode, an oxygen electrode. matrix am:! elec- E
ff 1.6 H·-~_1---_l~J_-__+----+---_! trolyte and an eleetrode holder or bipolar _plat. Elec- a
1
trolyte is circulated through the cells to prOVide make- c
up water, remove 'gas, and control temperature. S'
,_ ~if£___:~....,,==----!---_+---_+_
Fig. 6 illustrates electrolysis cell VOltage characteristics p
obtained by Allis-Chalmers \~ith cells utilizing fuel cell P
bipolar plate construction, Extrapolation of toda{s state- a
of-the-art indicates that electrolysis cells can most probably n
be. developed that operate at 1.535 v per cell and 400.
. Z ':.~,

.0 L.._ _--l. - L_ _---:"--_ _--' --'


amp / ft current density at atmospheric pressure. (This i~
o 200 JOO -00 soo equivalent to a power requirement of .+8.5 f<w hr/I,b HZ'
c,,};r~ ... I.~~"l'tV. amp 'r:~. I
produced.)
Fig. G - Electrolys~s cell VOltage amperage characteristics Circular bipolar plate geometry permits maximum utili-
(atmospheric pressure) \ . zation .of a cylindrical pressure vessel (Fig. 7), The pro-
F

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unit A

KOH

~ I~ctrico I
connection

electrically
isolated
pressure sea I
...
ElECTi0tYSfS CHL MODULE joint

Fig. 7 Electrolysis cell module

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ENERGY DEPOT FUEL PRODUCTION AND UTll..lZ.A TION 287 28,

posed design is based on the use of porous sintered metaf designed to take the pressure differential between the cell COl

electrodes. Catalyst~ are. deposited on the electrodes t~~ operating pressure and the atmosphere. -Bellows pressurize ads
in the decomposition of water by lowering electrode pot~ the inside of the vessel (outside of the electrolysis cells) to me
tial. the pressure level inside 'the cells with 'a nonelectrical! y pre
In order to mlmmlze internal resistance, the <:ell is conductive liquid'. This design eliminates pressure, differ- en(
designed with a thin KOH. filled asbestos membrane. This entials at each of the individual cell junC1:ions. ane
. membrane safely withstands thl< max~mum pressure .differ- .', Each electrolysis module cont~in9 fWO units (A and B in ch,
enti.l1s allowed in the projected pressure cOntrol system. Fig. 7) of elec,trolysis cells operating ~lec~rically in paral- nOI
Each cell is sealed with a-rings' T1;lis seal separates the gas lel. Each unit contains 70 cells in series; The "pressure- pre
and electrolyte from the pressurizing liquid fill outside the seal" type of closureJor the pressu~e vessel was selected over eff
cells. The presSure drop acros;.'these seals is negligible. the more conventiot1l~ bolted flange to reduce weight and car
since the liquid fill of the electrolysis module h ~eld at a overall diameter. be
pressure only slightly less than tha.t of the hydrogen gas. The LIQUEFACTION PLANT - Hydrogen at about 1500 psi is dur
. pressure of the liquio exceeds the internal cell pressure only delivered to the hydrogen Iiquefacti'on plant. A rttodified eXt
at shutdown and then only by the head of the liquid in the h.igh pressure Claude liquefaction cycle (Fig. 3) was selected del
module. for the system because of Its efficiency (6). hig
The electrolysis cells are in pressure tanks (see Fig. 7), A hydrogen liquefier is a specia.1ized combination of

11'
of
Table 1 - Characteristics ·of the Energy Dep<¥s
reo
Liquid Liquid Liquid Liquid hy'
Characteri1ics Hydrogen Ammonia Characteristics Hydrogen Ammonia
LI(
Fuel ProduG:tion Effi- Electrolysis (d-c).
ciency"'. "/0 68.0 67,1 k\t Ihr lib H 19,86 19.93
2
, Production Rate Hydrogen liquefaction, is
Fuel, Ib/hr 114 710 kwllr/lb H 4.60 is
. 2
Equivalent heat! Nitrogen generation, ag
Btu/he 6,960,.000 6.870.000 lh
hrlu/lb N 0.40
Pure water, Ibfhr 1050 1136 2
Hydrogen, Ib fhr 117 126
Ammonia synthesis .. ge
Nitrogen, lb Ihr 589 '
kwhr/lb NH 0.12 m
3
In
Power Requirements Module Weights ge
Water purification Electrolysis, lb 27.000 29,000 on
plant. kwe 7 8 H liquefac:iOn\ cold
2
Electrol ysis piant: 28,000 'Iy
equipment, Ib\
(a-c), kwe 8 9 HZ liquefaction, com- Ill-
(d -c), kwe 2320 2523 en
Liquefaction plant, , pressors. '1b . . 29.000. an
Control, Ib ;, 25,100 25,300 tll
kwe 525
Nitrogen generator Ammonia .. \ 30,000 ti,
plant. kwe 235 Totals 84,300 cc
Ammonia synthesis dr
plant, kwe 85 Module Dimensions an
Transmissian and dis- Electrolysis, ft 22 " 8.5 " 8.5 24 ' 8,5 '8.5 ar
trthl!C10n losses. kwe 4,5 40 H liquefaction,
2
Rectifica tion losses. gr
cold .equip .. ft 24 " 8.5 " 8.5
kwe 95 100 es
H liquefaction,
2 <.Ji
Total Electrical Power.
compressors, ft 24 x 8.5 I 8.5 at
kwe 3000 3000
Control, ft 20 )( 8.5 I 8.5 20 I 8.5 " 8,5 di
Thermal energy to Ammonia. ft 24 I 8.5 I 8.5 ri(
water purificati(Jn III
plant, In.ct 390 420 "'Based on higher heating values of fuels. pI
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P. G. GRIMES

compressors. heat exchangers; expansion vahes and engines. for the resultant gains in the ·process. Operatfon of the elec'
adsorbers. piping. and other standard types of process equi'P- trolysis process at the 2000 psi delivery press\lre requires a
ment. A transportable hydrogen liquefier could be built with pr<?jected ettergy input of 19.93 kw hr lib H 'produced, or
present technology. but such a system would not meet the
2
1.43 kw ~r I Ib H apove operation requirements'of the cells
energy depot criteria. Commercial compressors. expanders. 2
and heat exchangers Ivould impose severe limitations on the at atmospheric pH;ssure.
characreristics of the plant. It is proj~cted that lightweight. NITROGEN GENERATION -Nitrogen for the production
nonhydwcarbon lubricated double adlng. reciprocating com- of the ammonia is provided by 'th~iquefactionand frac .J''''
pressors operating at 850-1600 ft/min and 4000 rpm with an tional distillation of air (Fig. ,8). An advanced design. four.
efficiency of 75% can be used. Advanced design. nonbydro- stage. 36,000 rpm, centrifugal air compressor was used 'in
carbon lubri~ated, expanders wi'th efficiencies of 90"!0 would the des' vers ~ing by 5fY1/o lias used for fast start up and
be used. These ~lt'panders .l'iould be operated at h.alf speed operation·at.extre e altitude G:onditions. A radial inflow
during start up. Advanced concept high surface area !leat • turbine operating a 61,009 rpm and approximatel.y 8qa,to ef·
exchange~.,vill be incorporated in the liquefaction plant. ficiency \Vas used for the expamion engine.' Main heat ex-
design. Anticipated pmver requirements for liquefying the changers are envisioned to be of the aJuminum plate - and-
high pre~ure 'stream of hy?ro~en'ar~ 4.6 kw hr lIb liquid H fin~type for maximum heat transfer capacity per unit of
2
This liquid hydrogen fuel depot is expected to produce volume and weighJ. The distillati,on column \Vill utilize
114 Ib of liquid hydrogen ger hour from an electrical inplit either bubble-cap or sieve trays. It is estimated .that an A
of 3000 kw plus some thermal ene~y recovered from the energy input of 0.4 k\V hr Ivill be needed to produce 99.993'10
reactor turbine exhaust heat. Characteristics of the liquid N . The \Varm start up time of the plant \Vould be about
2 .
hydrogen fuel production plant are given in Table 1. 12 hr.
A¥!f1OWIA SX!'JTHESIS - Ammonia is synthesized by the
LIQUID A~H...l0NIA FUEL PRODUCTION reaction ~/:~?klij'ometric mixture of nitrogen and hydrogen
over cataly;ts .
FI\CILITY DESCRIPTION - The ammonia production unit , .
is similar to the liquid hydrogen unit except here hydrogen
is mixed \Vith nitroge~ and converted to ammonia for stor-
age' and handling. The ammonia en~rgy depot occupiesonly ."";' .;,
three modules exclusive of tbe nuclear po\Verplant. Arrange- This, eqU.il~b.rium reaction for the formation of ammonia
,ment of the modules is simila,·to that for the liquid hydro- is favored ~Y.higl! pressure. 10\V temperature: and'low con-
gen depot shOlvn in Fig. 2 \Vitb the exception that the t\Vo centration of ammonia in the feed strea·m. The ~hematic
modules of the liquefaction plant are replaced by a ~ingl'e • 'for the synthesis cycle is shown in the I.:)w~r' portion of
module adjacent to the control module. Both the nitrogen Fig. 8: The synthesis reaction is hig!lly exothermic. It is
generator plant and the ammonia synthesis plant are mounted en~isioned that the ~hemical reactor \Vifi'.!~·dooled by \Vater
on this single module. f1o\Ving through coils in the synthesis reacfi)r. The super-
The projections for the size and \Veight t>f the electro- heated steam so formed is passed, .thr01!gh a' convention~l-
'lysis module in this system are based upon extrapolations of type steam turbine -generator to recover a portion of the
the \Veights and sioZes developed under the liqu'id hydrogen heat of reac'tion as electrical energy.
energy depot design. PrOduction of ammonia from hydrogen A pivotal item in any ammonia plant is the' synthesis
and air requires less input energy per pound of hydrogen than catalyst. The energy. weight, and 'volume of the plant a're
that needed for liquefaction of this hydrogen. The produc- largely determined by the ability of the catalyst'to effect
tion rate for \Va,ter purification and electrolysis plants are the synthesis reaction. Available catalysts are relatively
correspontlingly about 8"70 larger than that for the liquid hy- crude materials .\Vhich ..though stuaied intensively. have 110t
drogen plant. Because of the larger production rate. the size been apprecjably improved. Cost of the ava,i lable materials
and \Veights of the \Vater purification and electrolysis system is so 10\V that significant del' opment programs have not
are larger than in the liquid hydrogen system. b en commercIAlly justified. It is projected that an ad-
... , 'W
PROCESS DESCRIPTION· The process system flo\V di<~::::~~ -~!Ui~em~1mI'!1&lcan e developed \Vhich is more
gram for the ammonia system is sI-0wn in Fig. 8 The proc- active than the best clirre ·als.
ess f>ow for the production of hydrogen is identical to that Typical process conditions for commercial low pressure
d.Jscu~sed before. The electrolysis plant is designed to oper~ plants are 500 C and 300 atm. Under these conditioos. the
ate at 2000 psi pressure. This permits hydrogen to be' mixed reactor effluent contains .abOll! 2fYI/o ammonia and represents
directly \Vith the nitrogen at this pressure in a stoichiomet- a 75"/0 approach td equilibrium. Chatacteristics of th~ -ell-
ric ratio prior to the final stage of compression required by ergy depot Mant. have been estima'ted on the basis of a' cat-
the ammonia snythesis process. Design o( the electrolysis alyst \Vhich pl'1:5d"uces 35"/0 ammotha in tue effluent stream
plant for operation at the 5000 psi required by the. ammonia (770/0 of equilibfium) ar 400 C and -at 350 atm. The flow
synthesis process was discarded as being excessively difficult rate of gases recycled back to the r~<1ctor is apprOXimately
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ENERGY DEPOT FU?L 'PRODUCTION AND UTll..IZA TION


if,t.
equal to the feed gas. rate;. therefore, the conversion separa-
'/
fore. It is ~sti{TIated th'\t-an ~nergy input ·ofO.12 kw hrJlb
289

from tlu
tion circufl operates whp- a gas flOl~ rate approximatelypou- NH 3 will Ife needed for the arumoni.a syn~hesi.s plant. .... the liqui
ble the feed gas rate. It is anticipated that this combina- . 1.
tion of conditions 'wtll yield a substantial weightAnd'volume . nle '~~m~riii1-fuel dep~ti~expe<%ed to 710·1b prod'u~e FUEL
savings for the overall plant. Compressors in the ammonia of anhydrous .1-Q"lmonia per ho~r fromilie 3000 kw·output of system~

syntResis plant will be .of the advanced type discussed be- th~uclear PO\ . rplant p.lus some the~lTIalenergy recovered sumed il
-. , . ~ "
ciency i
~
,
- ---~-;----~-.-...,
. J f-
'electric;
'-:, dire~~.!y'
'.' '.. ,- I rion 0'(
"!t' stUdies;
f ,
.•... electrol
R~W
W~HR
" \;(4/ ,"i.' electrQI
PUWP ,..,,;~. I
j
on the (
r. .:; ..L mally rl
I in,pH ar

(r<,iySis
I
; .. Elt}cJ
I
from ai,
.,I ((h;'ction'
1
\ .
.' \ Impr
.r
I ~rea~IY
(. ~3ted i
I concept
- -' ~ - - - -;- - - I ~;o~iA LiliUEF;eT~HPLA~.T':'T::- -, -: - - ...:., . . '\. t echrt,iql
G~sEOUS H2 I
~IR I ~ .
I FEED r LIQUID
I I
I AND [)]
I
I I
I I The
I I sisl of B
I I a small.
I
I o~fo The
hydroge
J I I The vel
1,1 I an in,uJ
I I I
During
I I I
depot f(
I I J
to the l
I I I
I of hydn
I I
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ...1I I I and ret!
I ternal v
r·-----~-------....J
I
I FEED COWPRE ssOR
I
I J transfer
(Jeca
I. genic l(
I PURIFIER L....i><H-':r---.1 I
I to the f
I ing star
I I
I losses d
I
dro,gen
I CRUDE 0) I
will n01
I ~~Q~~~~:'JE -IUBCOOLFP I
the prir
I HEAT OCH~"GEP I
REACTOR of the.t
I I
., I
vaporiz
surface~
I' I the inc(
I I'
L __ _ _ _ •...J the fuel
Fig: 8 - Liquid ammonia process flov... diaya_ The
6.

, .......
'j

,- ..

--. ~.
.,

P. G. GRIMES
<>-j> 0';
.~

...
from the r actor turbine eXHaust heat.. Characteristics' of . a large reinforced plastic ammonia storage ¥essel mounted
the liqu~d a Imonia fuel production plant are given in Table on an 8 ton GOER. al1d a smaller vessel moullted on the u~er
,
1. ~ vehicle. Soth v~sselsst(J~e the: liquilt 'lmmonia umtb·. ~res­
,,
FUEL PROD TION SYSTEM 1y10DIFIC ATIONS - In the. 'sure a.t ambient temperature. A small ~ump is pr.ovide9 !O -. . , .
.systems discussed ;'about 800/0 of the electric Rower is con- rriove ~he.liquid ammonia from 'the prit:nary vess~to .the '.
sumed in t'he produ tion of hydrogen. 'Nle major ineffi- user .vehicle through a fleXible hose. "The ves~eWare not
ciency in t11e system is the c6'llVersfon of nuclear heat to ven~ed except during emergency conditJons.gt~quse.itis .
electricity. if thermal nergy could Be used directl or in- y unn~cessary to vent gas in any onhe filling ot·tt~!lsfer dpelC'
direqiy in the productiort.of hydrogen. overall, fuel produc- ations. the efficiency of,.ammonia lriinsCer.1s expected to. 'Be .
tion . ol a depOt maybe. increased. Recent preli minary nearl y J 000/0. The system alsO' has tHe. adVailtage that' the: .
studies 'indicate that the u!~· of tlwrr~itl energy to operate ammonia may"be, stored indefinitely in the pressurized tat'lks. ,
,. ..
~

electrolysis cells at elevateu temperatures:,may'reduce the ,,,ithout loss.. The charaetc:rigtic~;Of fuel stWAge and distr,i.- " ,J
electrolysis cell' voltage~bY'-about.~, third. Feasibility studies bution units are gi~en in. Table 2.
on tbe dual pH concept have indica"teq that the use of ther- , .
mally r~generated acid and base to maintain ad1ff~ience ENERGY DEPOT FUEL UTILIZA nON
in'pH.at the electr~lysi.s cell ele,cr.:p~es ,~ill lowe~ ~he.rlec-
trolym cell v,oltage by abdut'a half.· . \ An integral part: of·tHe energy depo't ,concept is the: utili.-
Elootrochetnic'al' technique"sof p(epa~ation of lJ.itrogen ial' nergy depot fuels. The efficienex IJf fuel utiliza-
frcHTI air may. lower the po,~er requirements for nitrogen pro- tion' reflect uRon the size and nu~ber of eneigy depots
:-d~ction by half. . . ' 1. • I : ' , .'.

Improvements in techriology and new processes ..may•.


.
., .•
needec;l to support particu'Jar units .•- IdeallY, the most e,(fi-
cient powerplants should. be use.d. . ' "
Hydrogen and ammonia have been used l~ power internal
~~a.tlY enha~ce the. fuel pr.oduC~iO? yieluso~er those pro-
f .. '(')ted in the conoept\\al design stucft· Thl! ene;gy depot • combustion eRgin~s (7~10): Ho~"ever. present vehicle pow-
( concept does not depend upon the d~velopmen"t of tlteie 3 erpl\nts ,,,ould requlre modjfica.tioll to use these fuels. The
\ _ . techn,iqu!-,s but ~lf~y ,,,ill
greatly aid tpe progralf1. fuel utilization effici:i1cy. co~ld approath that of gasoline~'
, ~, \

~ .' , ..... Hydrogen and the hydrogen carrier) ammonia,' are ~ideal
LIQUID-HYDROGEN AND AMMONIA STORAGE fuels fcrt fuel calls and high ftIel.effIciencies can tie abc
AND DISTRIBUTION UNITS
.. t'!!'ined .. Theoretically. e"1ectrical power equivalent to the
free energy of the tuel o'l<ldation reaction can be prod~ced
The storage and distiil1ution unit~ for liquid hydrogen con- in the fuel cell. F;el cens are not carnot cycle limited. I
sist of a large storage vessel mounted on an 8 tOn.GOER .. and Practical factors such.as electr6de polarization internal reo'
a smaller .vessel mounted on the user vehicle. s'i3tance and' aUXiliary power demand lower the net outpUl.
The GbER is exJ5ected to carry about 3200 gal of liquid ~ m()'~l'a~ nature of fuel cell systems atrows}lte v~hic1e o
hydrogen in a vacuum insulated cryogenic storagev . L "';i),~l~~reat fle'xiliility: High fuel efficiency. silent oper-:..
The vessel receives and discharges liqqidhydrog~h. .... "'&.<Y. " t!f • '. , ~.
an in,ulated transfer hose through qUick'disconn;d~. . ! '0 '. ." .'
During filling. any vapqriz,ed.hydrogen is returned;i>~ihe'';' ...;~. _...;:,- >G:1I ..""" . . 6. . ,
depot for reliquefaction. Discharge of the ljl[uid hydrogen _~.. Table 2 • ChatactM,tics of the Fuel Storage
to the user vehicle is effected by vaporizing a small amount .,. ,.., and Distributio.n Unit ". .,.
of hydrogen in a pressure-'raising coil (external radiator)
and returr~ing it to the storage vessel" This raises 'the in- :~~.. ' Liquid Liquid
temal vessel pressure and forces liquid hydrogen through the -aW' Characteristic Hydrogen Ammonia
tr ansfer system. ,5'1
Because liquid hydrogen can onl y be stored under cryo- Transfer efficiency'. % . 93 100
genic temperature and because there will b<c heat leakage CapaCity of 8-ton GOER.
to the fuel. there will be. some unavoidable lo~ of flrel dur·",
- ~ I ~ ~
gal 3200
ing storage and distribution. During normal conditions. no D~ot production hours. o."!-.'
~ .
losses during storag~re expected 'since the amount of hy: to fill. hr
dro"gen vaporized by heat "leakage ,,,ill
be so s~all that it St~rage temperature of
,,,ill not pe vented. However, the transfer of hyddlgen from fluid. F -423 am\)lept.
. the primary to ~he secondary vessel requires the cool. down S{p~age pressure (normal)

of the. transfer hose. valves. and piping. Tms ~esults in of fluid. psia 14.7 c,
vaporization of theJlrst liquid hydrogen contacting the warm Method of delivery from
surfaces and as this gas mu~t be veflted to make room for , GO{R PR co'il pump
the fnccming hydrogen liquid. ther~ is ~loss. Efficiency of Meth6d of delivery from . ,,;:
user vehicl~ tank ~ electric heaner":
the fuel transfer is expected to be about 93"10. .
The ammonia ~orage and distribliti?n units consist of '. ... pump.

1>,.,

.. \ '
' ..
." , "
/()'

••
II

ENERGY DEPOT FUEL PROj)UCTlON AND UTILIZATION 291 292


,.,
.
I,; .••

ation, and design nexibility are obtainable with fuel cell developed ~aydiffer from those projE:cted , but it is exp~te~. air f
powerpl'lnts and pOint toward a greater usage of fuef' cells tha,t ''lith reasonable rcse<llch and ;developtTIl~nt, the size,. ' at 0
in futur~ vehicles. and are a prime application in the en~rgy weight, and perform'ance goals afe attainable, Fig, 9 shows. a
p
depot systems. . . the predicted performance rel.ated to .[l~sultli o'f tests pet.-. ., equi
."i
Future fuel cell powered m,i}itary' vehicle ''Ill require; formed ona fuel cell module built. in, an Allis-Chalmers lO:n
a new design. Present designs will probabljl not be rerro- development program: The predictioil.was also 'guided by ma~
fi tteel. However, in order to eSt'ablish tlie feasiJ:>ility of the results of research and development,Oh hydrpgeti~oxyg~n .... mol'
. application of fuel cell power to mrftary v~hicles. an ar-
1\1:10
assemblies for aeros(ace appliciJ,'tioQ ... d.1nl
mored personnel carrier (APC) based upon the M113 was . , A ptllmary consideration in 'designing a v~hiC1e power )

selected for study: Two fuel cellpm'lered vehicle drive sys- assembly 'is its ''Ieigh(' In applyilJg fU~I.celli to a vehicle, moi
tems ~ere inv~'stigated for this v~hicle: hydrogen/air and it is possible to project an operating design point so that the The
,. diss~ciated ammonia/air.-- For ~mparison, the use of hy- fuel cel! assembly will be vety efflci~nt; th~t' is, operate at hau
drogen, ammonia, and gasoline' in the Af'C' was also investi-
low curreJlt.density (amp / ft 2) aflQ at high terminal voltage
gated,
(see Fig. 9). The total electGOde .are.a for the-cells is large.
and their w~ight'is great. r'he amount of fuelconsumed r~r
FUEL CELL ASSEM~L,IES
a given mission ''Iould then be s·mall. If the design pOint is
The ,fuel cell assemb-lies studied were hydrogen/air chosen at a very high current ~ensity, then the voltage out-
ut of each cell is reduced, and t/1e number of cells musr
and dissOciated ammonia / air. The hydrogen / air fuel c ePl l · ...' .
assembly w~ the ce~terl~ign. All of the fuel cell be increased to obtain the desired output voitage. The
sy~tems consume hydrogen ias the fuel and oxygen froni air weighl1 of a module fd'r a given pm'/er level de~reases up. to
as the oxidant.. Direct use of a(tlmonia ·as a {uel in low tem- the point where the increased weight resulting from the
perature cells hai not presentLV'l'roved successful. and it number of cells required. overcomes the weight saving
m~st be dissociated intl'? hydrogen an~hrogen for use. In because of the reduction in platearea. I'Ibwever, this occurs
2 .
the cases where the fuel and exidant contain nitrogen, the at a very high amp! ft operating pOint for the projected
nitrogen remains inactiv'e illld. sE;!,ves only to dilute tlie con: performance cllrves. As this operating point increases fot a
,s~mabIe gas., As a resl!l,h the projected performance of the gfven perf~rmance curve. ef.ficiency faBs. Consequently.
'bydrogen/air and the d'ifsociated ammonia fuel cell are the, uel 'consumption rate, and the water au<! heat to be
lower than hydrogen/oxygen systems. ' -'-"-removed all 1 hese ~ffects result' in a system
'Hydrogen consuining fuel cellS can be classified as solid gro\'Ith. requiring more fuel and larger ~apacity auxiliarie$.
\ electrolyte; liquid 'l!lectrolyte', ~r capillary-held electrolyte If the performance, curve, ,require>! power level, and mis-
.J type. This,study. d_~als with th~ caRil~ary memb;ane ~uel sion time are known, it is possible to find apoint of mini-
ceil long under developtoent "It' .Allis:Chalmers.· Test,s and mum assembly w'eight: Thus, the selection of the amp/
an~lysis·h'l~?..prp'\;ed that this type of fud cell is feasible 2 " - '
and well suhe.d'Ot~.usein a mi{!Jaiy vehicle. This fuel cell ft design point requires a balancing of the results of mathe-
is an electrochemical converter thAt produces electrical en- mati,cal'analysis with a knowledgeand'Undetstanding of the
ergy, water, and. heat from a conr\nuDts supply of hydrogen natu're Qf fuel cell development p~ojected tdhhe late 1960's.
and oxygen (air), The basic system h~s"been described in- With alltl}eS: f~~t~rs in mind, the design pointof 300 amp/f?
oetal! in other, reports (11-13).' at 0.825 v was selected for continuous dUlyof the hydrogen/
HYDRoGEN-AIR FUEL CELL ASSEMBLY -='Earty in the
"e....
study it was necessary to designate a power output for the '.' r - - - , - - - , - - , - - - , - - , - - - , - - ' - - - , - - - ,
... ! ' I
hydrogen/air fuel cell as,sembly which would appro£imately '.0 ...... , W.

(
satisfy the power requirements for the vehicle dri.ve unit on , o.\. '-..... i :1
the APC. This was necessary to determine the.weights.sizes
'0,' "
," ~".:~
,,,."u
.
"l<
a d othet characteristics of rhe fuel cell a~sembly and its Ih>,c'"~:>h',_~:~
0,'
" ' I "
co p ts. A gross power output <Jf 160 kw in continuous
service w s selected as the total power Output of rhe' fuer ". lOC

~semb . The auxiliaries for the fuel cell assembly require' 1


~~
j '" /. "".,1
w of power, This assembl y can produce ISO kw (net)' ~,. 200

in a 15 minute overioad condition. '


Hydrogen/air fuel cell assembly designs were projected
'0<
to be'achievable in the late 1960's. on the basis of perform-
at)ce char\c'teristj'Cs. available in 1963. AClU~1 assemblies
.0
'Ill JOO AOO ~soo • 600
(""...,,,""';...,.." ....11/'" •
70<
""
"The hydrogen/oxygen system for vehicles was analyzed Fig. 9 - ~rojected performance C:urves for hy'drogen/air fuel
and found to be vf7:JY similar to the hydrogen! air system. cells '

(,
0#'
'.'

.. ' ENEi
p. G. GRIMES

2 pera
air fuel cell. A 15 minu'te overload point of 400 amplft nected through a common manifold to the condenser. Pres- rem,
'a to. 758 was used. sure within tltis condenser is automatically maintaihe.d by elec
~c Process' Equipment - Arrangement of the fuel cell p'rocess the vacuum fan; thus, ·the. migration of moisture stOps at a throl
'~qui~mNlt is shO\>'n in Fig. 10. The fuel cells are~rranged particular concentration of electrolyte when the correspblid- liqui
In modules consisting. of 91 cells each. Sixteen modules Ing vapor ?tessure matches the pressure maintained in the radl
~ake up the vehicle drive unit and ar~ connected by com- condenser. Condensed moisture is 'returned to the alr puri· a ci
mon manifolds to the cooling circUIt; she hydrogen and oxi- fier to humidify the incoming air. An air purifier condi- con,
d:Jnt ~upplies. and the moisture removal condenser. tions the air entering the cells removing dust, carbon dio~­ plel
About 7Cf'/o of the w.ater is removed through the static ide. and the like. and humidifying of air to a vapor pressure 1
moisture control system on the hydrogen side of the cell. corresponding to·.minimum desired vapor pressure in the fuel am
The r~.aining 300/. of the moisture is removed Ivi th the ex- Ci!lls. '90f~
haust air. Moistureremo~l,cavities of all cellS ate con:: The fuel cell motlules are maintained a( a constant tem- poW
fore
, I duel

ead
r,",,~_L_..., due,
mOl
I '<J \erondory I
I. I 12 ,

I
I;Qu;d
. hydrogen
"0"'9' I
""
purifier
two
I,- u".;' oJI and
~"
par

comprenor hyd
3 a
purif:ed
oir

A1
sel
dis
eel
ou~

dit
th.

fuel celh thE


,...--- , dre
I ttl(
I
I cl'>_oling
d-c power I liQuid

I
r
I"

r-----
I

~'--.,..._
IL
..
_ A!

mec.hon;col
power
in
fa
veh:c Ie
different io r
cc

Flg~ 10 - Hydrogen/air fuel cell vehicle drive ~nil


ENE'RGY DEPOT FUEL PRODUCTION A;~D UTILIl.A TJON 291

perature of 180 F. Heat is dissipated' both through moisture The dissociated ammonia-ai1 cell is not expected to c{
removal from the cells and tllJOugh a cs>oling circuit. An reach the performance of [he hydrogen/ air cell because of d\
electrically nonconductive. cooling liquid is ~culat-ed the effect of nitrogen dilution on the hydrogen electrode. ni
through the electrode holders in each fuel cell and the hot The curve in Fig. 11 sh0lts the performance estimated th
liquid is routed through a c!'mmon header to the cooLant for this fuel cell projected to lated960·s. This projection su
radiator. The cooled liquid then goes to {he sump tank and assumes considerable development on both the fuel cell and
a circulating pump forces it through the moisture removal the ammonia dissociator to minimtze the amount of and Ib
condenser 'and into the fuel cell modules to make a com- effects of nondissociated ammonia. Rated current uensity oi
plete circuil. -2 .
was selected at 225 amp/ft at 0.825 ,v p~r c~ll. Ovetload
The fuel cells are arranged in modules of 91 cells to give 2 .
" a module veltage of 75 v at the continuous load design was selected at 300 amplft at 0.758 v pex cell.
"'.point. Electrode area was selected to produce 10 kw of
powci per module. Current through each module is there' AMMONIA DISSOCIATOR
fore 133 amp. Under overload conditions each module pro-
duces 178 amp at 69 v (12.3 kw). An ammonia dissociator was conceptually designed to
The modules are arranged in four groups of four modules produce up to 20 ~.of usable hydrogen per hOUt for tlle fuel ;1
each. Each group of modules is connected in series to pro- ... ~

duce 300 v. The groups of modules are arrangeu so that


modules 1-4 are in parallel with modules 5-8; modules 9,
Tahle 4. - Hydrogen' Air Fuel-Cell Assembly
12 are parallel wim medules 13-16. Switches enable those
Operating Characteristics
two parallel groups ro provide an output VOltage of 600 V
and 266 amp when in series, or 300 v and 532 amp when in " -
Continuous 15 min
parallel. Duty Overload
The major design and operating characteristics for the Fi
hydrogen/ air fuel cell assembly are summarized in -Tables Gross power. kw 160 196 m
3 and 4. AUXiliary power, kw - • 12 16
Net power. kw 148 180
DISSOCIATED AMMONIA/ AIR FUEL CELL ASSEMBLY
Assembly voltage (parallel). v 300 ~ 276
A gross power output of 160 kw in contim,.Ious service was
Assembly voltage (series), v 600 552
selec ted as the total power output of the fuel cells for the
Assembly amperage
dissociated. ammonia fuel cell assembly study.' This.fuel
(p'arallel). amp 532 712
cell assembly has a .net power Output of 147 kw in continu'
Assemblyamperape
ous service and 179 kw (net) in the 15 minute overload con-
(series). amp 266 356
dition. The fuel cell'assembly Studied is 40/0 more powerful
Module power. kw 10.0 12.3 ~_
than required by the APC.
Modqle VOltage. v 75 69
The dissociated ammonia fuel cell assembly d.iffen from
Module amperage. af(lp 133 178
the hydrogen/air assembly in two major respects. The hy-
Cell power, kw o 110 0.1.35
• d~ogen .fuel is qiluted Witl1«t~og~n ~nd a modification of Cell voltage. v . 0.825
'--
0758
the mOisture removal gf IS req1ltred . -
..~
Cell amperage. amp 133 178
1· . . 2
Cell current density. amp/ft . 300 400
Table 3 - Operating temperature. F 180
. Ie. Fuel {:ell Assembly,
,.M ajor -Design Assembly weight/net.power

ratio Ib/\w' 21.4 17.6


·Size and Weight
As¥:mbly volume/net power
3 .
Module weight. Ib • 101 ratio ft /kw 0.310 0.255
Fuel consumption, lb H /net'
Module volume. ft3 0.827 2
kwhr 0.108 0.118
Number of modules 16
F'uel consumpti0n, Ib H /hr 16.0 21.~'t·.,
Assembly weight. Ip·· 316Q . 2
3 Purified air requirements.
Assembly volume, ft - 45.9
, Ib air/hr 790 1050
Air purification chemicals
-lncludes 16 modules plus auxiliary equipment consist- ., 36
Ib/hr 2.7
ing of radiator. filter: air compressor. condenser. vacuum ."" '-,.

fan. circulating pump, water pl11lJp. plumbing and ducting -Includes power fo¥ compressor,. .cooling fan. vacuum
controls, fluids. and air purifier. fan, circulating pump. water pump. and electrical control.

,: ,. • ~. - ". - , . - ¥' -
P. G. GRIMES
El

cell assembly. For tris case. the ammonia dissociator pro- Theoretically. 113.3 lb/hr of dissociated ammonia is
fl
duces 26.5 Ib/hr of hydrogen in the form of 3:1 hydrogen- necessary to supply the fuel cell with 20 Ib/hr of hydrogen.
T
nitrogen mixture. This mixture is'produced by catalytic To make the process self-sustaining, about 6.5 lb/hr of hy-
thermal dissociation of ammonia at i700 F and 50 psig pres- drogen are burned in the reactor to supply the energy for the
di
sure. Equipment required was eSI'imated to weigh about 1025 diss6ciati~n process. Included in this figure are possible ra-
T
3 diation.diffusi<m losses, and so on.' Therefore, a total of
lb and occupy about 12.5 ft A schematiC .rep;esentation
150.1 lb /hr of ammonia is supplied to the reactor.
of the unit appears in Fig. 12. ft A palladium / silver foil hydrogen diffuser used after the E
' r " - - - - .. -.---~ dissoCiator cou'ld supply pure 'hydrogen 'to the fuel cells. This
\~ould al1o\~ the projection of hydrogen/air fuel cell sys-
. tern. The palladium/silver diffuser was disallowed because
of its volume and be«ause it requires the dissociator to be
0''''''''''-'·- . . ,- -"""rl--,-~=-­ _~---<4.00"'"
'operated at high pressures.
":;7l.__ ...
«
? PROCESS EQUIPMENT - Arrangement.of the fuel cell
~-_··----_·~---------1lOO J:
I
(,. process equipment is shO\~n in Fig. 13. The an angement is
>
: ,') ~I-' - - _~ .... - ----.I ~
similar to that for th~ hydrogen/ air fuel cell assembly wilh
, z
~ respect to the temperature control equipment and the ~ply
--""r--,,--~ 200 !:
.,?)!- ..
'" ~__.... __.1 Ii'
~
of purified air to the oxygen electrode. The fuel supply
equipment differs in that il hydrogen/nrtrogen mixt:Ure from
dissociated ammonia is fed to the fuel cell hydrogen elec-
. tr?des. About 750/0 of the hydrogen in this mixture is used
.'
by the fuel cell to produce electrical power. The remain'
., 200 100 400 300
C.Jf:l'~E",T O£",!>:T ~. "M_r:>/~T' ing hydrogen is b'urned to provide the heat for the dissoci-
,- Fig. 11 - Projected peTform~ncecurves for diss,dated am- a tat"

IS~
mania, air fuel cells Electrical ar-rangements for the dissociated ~mmoniaL air
oir
exhaust BOF
gases 1900 l'
1700 F

{'-

preheater reactor preheoter It.

No.1 No.2

NH3 ...jf f
90 F I N2' H2
mlxt.ure
7f.:IJ F
N - H
2 2
mixture
800 F
Lr-----------.~300~F~---<..
N 2- H2 heat exchanger
700 F .-L.
water
c-onden~er

I I I I I 11'1 I

finned air cooler


300F
humidifier
150 F
fuel cells
c:r-r80 F
.
·
I I I I I I I 1 coal-
oir
1
Fig. 12 - Ammonia dissociator process flow diagram
ENERGY DEPOT FUEL PRODUCTION AND CTlLIl.A TION 29.)

fuel cells are id~nt'lcai"to that for the hydrogen/ ailr cells. current and there will be no losses due to conversion to al-
This system'~ auxiliaries consume about 1 kw more power. terna te current.
'. The major .design and operating characteristics for the , . 2. The doc drive assembly elimina~es the need for a-c
dissociated ammonia fuel cell assembly are summariZed in conversion equipment with its associated control. .
Tables 5 and 6, 3. A simple one-step switching of the fuel c'eU!'anks
from series to parallel operation will change the output from
Nt
low speed, high torque to high speed. low tQrqlle using full
ELECTRlC DRlVE ASSEMBI.Y M
~!: fuel cell output in both ranges.
4. -The short ri~e overload capabijIty of the d·c motor M
A detailed analysis was made of the electric drive as- is greatly superior to a'c motor. Nt
sembly for the M1l3 (5). A d-c type motor was selected 5. Its abil-i.ty to ;"eaken ilS field and deliver constant As
. for the fuel cell powered vehic Ie. The advantages of the horsepo\"er.with constant voltage and amperage input over
d -c drive assembly are: As
a wide speed range (trading torque for speed) closely niatch
1. It is more efficient since fuel cells produce direct norrnal traction requirements.

l-- 5ECONDARY
AMMONIA
5TORAGE
..,
,
I
I
I
AMMONIA
DI5S0CIATOR
AIR
PURIFIER

I UNIT I
L -l

COMPRESSOR
Gr
H2
Au
AND PURIFIED
N2 AIR Ne
AIR As
As'
As

. COOLING M<
FUEL LIQUID M<

,.. CELL5
M<
(:e
I Ce
I Ce
D-C POWER I (:e
I
I

,..---- As!

Fu(

r D-C FUI
L...,_ 5HUNT
MOTOR Pur

MECHANICAL
Air
POWER

VEHICLE
DIFFERENTIAL Fig. 13 • Dissociated ammonia/air fuel cell vehicle drive fan
u~r ~
P. G. GRIMES


Table 5 - Dissociated Ammonia Fuel-Cell !Assembl y.
Only disadvantages of the doc drive assembly are that the
motor is Slightly larger and heavier than its a-c.counter-
Major Design
part, and the d·c motor requires a commutator.
The design analysis indicated that a single shwlt....ound
Size and Weight
doc motor was suitable for the drive'of the APC based on
MU3. At low s1'eeds up to 9 mph. the low voltage highcur-
Number of cells per module 91
rent par~llel circuit OUtput of the fuel cells is applied to the
Module \~eight. Ib 134 .
armature of the shunt \olound motor. This prOVides high
3
Module volume. ft 1.09 torque tQ..the motor eliminating the need !or mechanical
Number of modules 16 shifting. At higher speeds. the fuel cells are s'olitched to the
.-\ssembly<weight.lb- 48.00 series' circuit placing high voliage. low current source on

.
3 the armature. Fine control in each r3ng,e is prOvided by
Assetpbly volume.' ft. - 64.1
varying the fleld current which ts excited from a constant
-Includes 16 modules plus auxiliary equipmenr consist- voltage control. '
ing of radiatot. filter. air compressor. con~enscr. \"acuul11
fao. circlliatingpump. water pump.,plumbing and ducting. VEHlCLE AN AL ¥SIS
controls. fluids, air purifier. and ammonia d~sociator.
.f" mathematical vehicle analysis was developed to.pro-
Table 6 - Dissociated Ammonia Fuel-Cell Assembly. vide a means of quiokly e.stimJ'ting the weight. size. and
Operating Characrerisrics power requirements for the APC fuel cell powered vehicle
withou~'Preparing a detailed drafting layout of each vehicle

Continuous 15 min drive unit. This analysis is hasically a weight. volume.


Duty Overload power calculatibn which applies equal averaging to all ve'-
hicle components. Detailed analysis would probably arrive
Gross pO\ver. kw 160 196 at a lower order of change.
The anal ysis considered:
Auxiliary power. kw- 13 17
Net power. kw 14, 179 1. The present horsepower to differe~ial.
t\ssembly voltage (parallel). v 300 276 2. Size and weight of present powerplanl ,'lnd fuel supply
-\ssembly VOltage (series). v 600 552 3. Weight of vehicle per present di'rnensions.

Assembly amperage (parallel).


amp ~32 712
4. The corresponding values for the new vehicles.
This analysis is given in detail in the conceptual design
report (5) .
(
.-\ssembly amperage (senes).
amp 266 356 FUEL CELL-ElkCTRJC MOTOR DRIVE UNITS - \'Jeight-
t--.lodule power. liw 10.0 12.3 to-horsepower ·and volume-to-horsepower ratios for the truee
Module VOltage. \ 75 69 fuel cell-vehicle drive assemblies are sutnmarized in Table
~lodule amperage. amp 133 178 7. In all.cases. horsepower ~efel1.,to the horsepower de Ii v-
Cell power. kw 0.110 0.135 ered ,to the steering differential Df the APC with the vehicle
Cell voltage. v 0.825 0.758 drive units operating at their 15 minule overload rating.
Cell amperage. amp 133 178
2
Cell current density. amp/ft 225 300
Operatmg temperature. F 180
Table 7 - IVeighl-To-Horsepower and Volume-To'
Assembly vleight/ner power -----."
Horsepower Ratios For the APC Powered By a
ratio l&/kw 327 26.8 ~ \
\ Fuel-Cell Drive Unil
Assembly volume/net power
/
'"
3 Dissoc I a ted-
ratw/ft /kw 0.436 0.358 ,/
\ Hydrogen/Air Ammonia/ Air
Fuel consumption. Ib NH /net
3 ~el-ceU Drive Fuel-Cell Drive
kwru 0.816 0894
Fuel consumption. lb N H /ru 120 IF-O 3
3 Component fl /hp
Purified air requirements.. Ib
air /hr 1 790 . 1050 Fuel cell assembly 16.4' 0259 25.0. 0.364
Air purification chemicals flec tric d ri ve
Ib/hr 2.7 36 assembly 11.2 0.069 11.2 0069

-Includes power for compressor. cooling fan. vacuum


Vehicle fuel unit 1.5 0.314 4.5 o 163
fan. cllculating pump. water pump. and electricalcontroJ.. Totals 29.1 0.642 40.7 0.596

,)
E!~ERGY DEPOT FUEL PRODUCTION AND CTILIZA TlON

Fuel cell ,assemblies contain ail auxiliaries including the 541101 with allowance for Ullage. fill, and interconnecting
air purifier and ammonia dissociater where applicable. lines. auxiliaries. and a packaging factor (14).
Values for .the fuel ceil asSemblies assume that the eleCtric Values given in Table 7 were then used to calculate th~
drive assembly is 8&10 efficient. A 10')', increase in the characteristios of the respective armored personnel carriers
weight-to-horsepower ratio for mounting the fuel cell com- assuming that these values remain constant over the range
ponents. and a zci'J, increase in the '~olume' to· horsepower ,of power needed.'4'he performance of these vehlclesshould
ratio were included as a packaging factor. The electric ~e.ectoal"fo tlle production M1l3. ;~inc.e the'components are
drive assembly includes the motor. cooling equipment. and designed at apprOXimately the power,required, this is con'
controls. sidered,a vali<J assumption. The result of the analysis is
fuel rates for the respective fuel cell ass mblies were given in 'fable B.
determined by using the 15 minute overlo rating adjusted INTERNAL COMBUSTION ENGINE DroVE UNITS - It is
to in"lude the losses to the electric driv assembly. A 5.38 apparent that the change in fuel from petroleum to cither
hr opdtanng duration at full power was used to calculate the liquid hydrogen or ammonia -will also innuence the design
capacity of the fuel tank. The weights and volumes of the (or performance) oJ the APC \o{hen these fuels are consumed
fuel containers werc estimated f.rom curves glvcn in APCI· in an interna'! combust\on engine. A brief analysis was made
on the sa me basis as for the fuel cell powered vehic Ie.
Table 9 presents the weight-to-horsepower and volume'
Table 8 - Characteristics of APC Powered By a to-horsepower ratios for the internal combustion engine drive
Fuel-Cell Drive Assembly unit fueled by hydrogen or ammonia. In both cases the fuel
efficiency of the engine was arbitrarily considered equal to
Fuel'Cell Powered that of the gasoline engiJ!e. The engine and (ts auxiliaries
Armored p~el were arbitrariiyassumed to be 10% heavier and larger than
Produc -
Carriers . the gasoline engine. The results of rhis analysis for equal
tion
range vehicles are presented in Table 10. This tablc shows
Model. Dissoci -
that the use of either liquid hydrogen o~ ammonia in the
M1l3 . Hydro- ated Am"
APC will require either a larger and -heavier vehicle. or a
Characteristics Gasoline gen/Air monia/ Air
compromise in the vehicle's rangc_ In particular. the large.
liquid hydrogen tanks result in the largest vehicle studied;
Combat weight to horse-
.the roof is raised 11 in. and the liul1'\s len~thened 5 in. In
power ratio. Ib/hp' 146 146 146
the case of the ammonia fueled internal combustion engine.
Range (full power dura-
the roof must be (aised 5 in. to provide for the increased
tion). hr 5.38 5.38 538
volume of the fuel.' This vehicle is similar to the three fuel
Horsepower to differ-
"'" cell powered vehicles4n outside appearance.
entia. hp 157 182 203
The fuel rates for the internal combustion engine pow,
Vehicle combat weight.
ered vehicles are considerably greater than for the fu,el cell .,
Ib 22.830 26.600 29.600
powered vehicles. This is particu)ar1y true forthe hydrogen'
Fuel.lb 490 99' 828
fueled vehicles. 33.0 Ib/hr versus 18.3 Ib/Iu. respectively.
1&7 165
Fuel. gal
.'··~9· In the' ammonia fueled vehicles, the; fuel. consumption
Fuel container and
rates are 154 Ib/hr for the fuel cell povJe.red vehide ver-
supply unit. Ib ~O 173 83
sus 206 Ib/hr for the internal combustion- engine powered
Fuel container and I
vehicle.
. 3
supplyumt. ft '11 57 30
Powerplant. lb 1810 5020 7350
3
Powerplant. ft 50 60 88 Table 9 - Summary of Weight-To-Horsepower and'
Increase in hull weight. Volume-To'Horsepowe'r Ratios for the APC
Ib 830 890 Powered By an Internal Combustion Engine
Increase in huil
Gasoline .Hydrogen Ammonia
volume. ft3
.Vehicle height. in. 72
56
79
60
80 3 3 3
----
C~mponent Ib/hr ft Ihp Ib/hr ft Ihp Ib/hr f{ I hp
Vehicle width. in. 106 106 106
Vehicle length. iri. 192 192 192
Engine and
fuel rat~. full power 12.8 0.351 12.8 0.3·51
auxiliaries 11.6 0.319
Ib/hr 91.1 )J.8.3 154 2.9 7.3. 0.264
Fuel Unit 3.3 0.069 0.601
Air cleaning chemi-
cals. lb 16.4 Hl.5 'rotal 14.9 0.388 15.7 0.958 20.1 0.615

."
...
,'.

P. G. GRlM&S

The efficiency advantage of the fuel cells over internal energy of the fuel consumed using die higher heating values
combustion engines IS shown in Table 11. These values for each fuel. .",

were computed from the vehicle analysis of the armored The energy depot systems are t:nost easily compared by
penonnel carrier. In all cases they include the a(j)(iliaries. considering them as complete individual systems. ·Table 12.
Th€ drive efficiency IS defined as the horsepower-hours de-. gives the number of horsepower-hours delivered to the ve' ;;c
ll\'eH~d to the vehicle differential divided by the equivalent hicle transmission for each hour of depot operation. and the
system efficiency ..

SUMMARY
Table 10 . Charaderisties of APC Powered By Internal·
Combustion Engine The fuel logistic problem can potentially be alleviated
. by using nuclear energy \n the field. Feasibility studies in'
Fuel Consumed dieate the technical possibility of converting nuclear energy.
air. and water into the chemical· fuels. liquid hydrclgen and
Gaso- Hydro- Am-
. ammonia ~n the field. These fuels can be utilized to power
Cha rac terist ics line· ~ monia
internal combustion engines or more efficiently to power
fuel·cell electric drive. systems. A .conceptual design anal·
Combat weight-to-horse-
ysis of the.fuel production por:ion of the energy depot system
power rallO. lb/hp 146 146 :46
resul~d in Ifghrweight compact. mobile units of high e(fi-
Range (full- power dura·
~iency. The study of armored personnel carriers sho\-.'ed the
tion). hI 5.38 538 5.38
suitability of fuel cell e'lectric motor drive systems for mili-
Horsepower to differential.
tary vehicles. The energy depot system should prove to be
hp 157 liO 168
an exciting concept for th.e army of the future.
Vehicle combat w;-ight. Ib 22,830 24.800 24 .500
Continuing stuQies 'in the areas of hydrogen and ammonia
10ue I. Ib 490 178 1110
production and their utilization in intema I combustion en - .
Fuel. gal 80 300 220
gines and fuel cells should .11101-.' tbe early realization of the
Fuel container and supply
energy depot.
unit. lb 30 314 J J1
Fuel container and supply REFERENCES
'. 3
unlt. ft 11 103 44 1. NY010422, "Modile Energy Depot Feasibility Study
2150
Powerpl,lO!.lb

Powerplant. ft
3 \ 1810

--SO
2180

60 59
Summary Report." Alli'-Chalmers Mfg. Co .. July 12. 1962.
Contract Report AT(30-1)2931.. ,.'
Increase iR hull weight. Ib "\ -1670 620
"
Increase in hu 11
Table 11 . Comparison of Drive Unit Efficiencies
3
volume. ft ........ ~2 42 Efficiencies. Per Cent
Vehicle height. jn. " 72 83 ., 77 Internal Fuel Cell Drive Units
Vehicle 'tidth. in. i06 106 106
Co'mbl1stion Continuous 151Minute
,Vehicle length. in. -192 197 192
Fuel and Oxidant Engine Duty Overload
Fuel rate. full pOl-.'er.
Ib/hr 91.1 33.0 206 Gasoline/air 21.5
Hydrogen/air 21.5 45.6 41.7
• Production model M 113. Ammonia/air. 21.5 38.1 34.8

Table 12 - Comparison of Energy Delivered and "ystem Effic~encies

Horsepower - Hours Deli vered To System Efficiency '1.


Transmission per Hour of Depot Energy Delivered To Transmission "',
,
Operation Elactrieal Energy Delivered To Dep'ot
. .

r Internal Fuel-Cell-Drive Un,it Internal Fuel-Cell- Drive Unj t


Combustion Continuous 15 mi~:. • combustion Continuous 15 min.
-Engine Duty Overload Engine Duty Overload

~ iqmd hydrogen 546 1158 1055 13.6 28.7 26.3


.-\mmonia 579 1026 937 14.4 .25.5 23.3

.'
j

....
ENERGY DEPOT fUEL PRODUCTION tU"D UTll.ll.ATlC1N 299

2. A. B Rosenthal. "Energy Depot Concept "·Paper 9, W. Cornelius. SAf. Meeting. Detroit. 1965. .
650050. SAE Transactions. Vol :4 (J966\.· 10, K. O. ·Lindell. "lnttoducd'on to Nuclear Powered En-
3: APL-1"DR-64-41 "Research and Development on an ergy oep'Jt'C'6ncl!pt." sAt·Meeting. Detroit. 1965.
Ad~nced Laboratory Liquid Metal Regenerative Fuel Cell l " . 11. f. L. p'latner and P. D. Hes~. "Static Moisture Rem.ovill
Allison Div. of General Motors. Contract Report AF '33 (657)- Concept for Hydrogen-Oxygen Capiyary. Fuel Cell." Allis-
11032. Ch:lmers Mfg. Co.; Researcn DiV,.,.5ME!AIChE Heat Trans-
4. K. Miller. Chen). Eng. Prpg .. Vol. 57. (1961).140. fer conference. Bo.ston. luly '11T6.~,\,
5. ACNP 64501 -Energy Depot System Study." Allis· 12. ]. L. Platner. D,P. Ghete"/ahd R. \'/. Opperthauser.
Chalmers Mfg. Co .. February 1964. Contract Report AT (30' "Capillary .Hydrogen -Oxygen Fuel 'Cell Syst.em for Space
1) 3133. Vehicle Ap'plication." AlEE Meeting, Wi\shington. Augus.!
6. D. B. Chelton.]. W. Dean. and]. Macinko. "Methods 1963.
of Hydrogen Liquefaction." N. B. S. Repon 5520. Oct. 14. 13. R.]. Lodzinski. "A 5 'K"" Hydrocarbon Air Fuel Cell
1957. Po,:"er soUrce." AIAA Conference on Aerospace Po\<er Syl-
7. Eo Kroch, -Ammonia. A Fuel for Motor Buses." J. tem~, Philadelphia. 1964.
Inst. Petroleum. (July 1945). 213. 14. ,ACPI 541301 "Energy Depot Cryogcnjc Fuel Storage
8. G. Egloff and M. Alexand·er. "Petroleum Refiner," and Distribution Systems Phase I Conceptual Design" Air Prod-
VoL 23, No.6 (1944), 127. ucts and Chemicals. Inc .. Contract Repon AT (30-1) 3129.

Disc.ulsion of thi; paper appears on page 11 Ii

, "

.
,.

. f
.'
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..

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""

.. -;.- ..'. .. ~
~ .
.,

. ,.

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I

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ir::l, ,,'<. ."\f


DISCU:.~
316 w. CORNELIUS, ET AL A

"~
ie
Discussion of papers 650050 (p. 2~4). :650051 (p. 281), and 650052 (p. 300). ir

'R. J. fLAN}''ERY quire 2rt1o of the a'mmonia's hydrogen to heat the ammonIa pc
American Oil Co: Fracker: . vi
The founh relates· to the projection of the fuel cell per- FI
t -
THIS AUTHOR GENERALLY concurs with the remarks '" ithin formances. The projections presented do not ~eem too op- 1i
the scope of the presentation. Several comments should be timistic. But, for th,e benefit of those more casually ac- CI
made.' quainted with fuel cells. it should be noted that the pJ
The fl rst re la tes to the choice between con.verted - i Iiterna 1- comparison 'iith present s(ate of art should b~ made' for power cI
combustion and fuel-cell 'power units for vehicles. This delisi ties at the required operating efficiency •• not at the CI
choice might be influenced by the attractive posSibility of maximum efficiency. Fig. A summarizes the power den-
a simple conversion kit allowing use of standard hydrocar- sity data of Fig. 9 and 11 of the paper and shows the operat- hi
bon -fuelM engines. However, this convertability may not ing points selected in the design study. The voltage efft- i di
-'.~..
be unique to IC engines in view of other work directed to- dency lines which have been superimposed on the curves 01
ward fuel cell vehlcl~s powered by.steam reformed petrol- reveal tha1--the desiRli. points ato all in the 60 -7a'7o range. it
eum fuels. S·uch vehicles would be .readily converted by The c6rresp~lIiding poimon· the 1963·'state-<t-art curve given_ al
changing to ammonia ct'acking. . .' 2..
.is well below 1 00 w ft • .
." cI
'The second relates to scope. \Vhilethe application de- IT
Finally, in a truly isolated arena, some unexpected ma-
taiied in the paper, vehicles. is one of the most difficult. an rn
terials can become "fuels" in the Mnse that a supply of them
anny requir~s energy for various other purpose~. ranging from
\ . can be used up. For example jn the processes detailed; air
cooking and lighting to commUnications power. Safe ef-
purification and ion exchange water pUrification are re-
ficient burnel'$ for depot fuels will be needed. A variety of ir
quired. Taking the KOH requirements for air. purification
electric powet supplies of capacity or type not possible to be' rJ:
given in the paper, some 30 tons/year of KOH would be re-
prOVided by batteries in the isolated arena will also be needed. Ii
quired for the utilization in fue1 cells of the yearly reactor
In many o.f these cases, the .projected fuel cell. with suit- b
output. Chemical needs for regeneration of the Ion exchange
able power processing auxiliaries, will probably be more Q
bed would depend on available water and on ur'ldisclosed
efficient than cor.responding cotwened engine generator sets . tl
process details, but could be substantiAl and would apply
The third relates to the direct ammonia fuel cell. In s<
whether engines or fuel cells were tised. Use of thennally
the paper, thli approach was discarded for consideration at o·
regenerable treatment chemicals would heip alleviate· a
this time because of lagging teChnical advance. Yet this Ii
problem in this area.
system holds a' potential advantage which warrants at least IT

continued attention to its possible development. This ad- o


vantage is high efficiency on idle. The rate of the ammonia E. B. RIFKIN
cracker cannot be changed rapidly, whereas the fuel con- Ethyl Corp. fI
sumption of the direct cell readily drops ~o a low level on ir
Idle. Important fuel savings can result. In addition, an THIS PAPER)S an important contribution to the literature sl
ambient -temperature. direct ammonia 'cell would not re- on combustion in reciprocating engines as well as a signif- Sl
1,
700 ,---,----,r---,-----,---,---,--...,--,.-..-...,--, a:
st
70
VOl (AOl lFflC'lHCY - '00 90 st
01
tt
pc
al
91
al
rn

10
'. th
cI
bl
f1
01
rr:
100 200 300 '00 SOO 1000
01
ASf Fig. A . Powet density data and operating poims
......
,~

\""

AMMONIA AS AN ENGINE FUEL 31~

'\
icant collection of data on the possible u~ility of ammoni, dry air, moist. air would likely 'impose an..additional penalry,
in the energy depot concept. ' since high hUmidity tends' to substantially narrow the flam-
The authors have clearly pointed out many of the im- mabiliry limits in the amrimnia -air system (3).
portant factors that m~t'be constdered if ammonia is to be To ove.rcome·this flammabiiity limit problem,' the au- . ,,
viewed as a serious contender for use as a military fuel. thors have \!Sed several techniques with substantial success.
From their data. it is obvious that. In contrast with gaso- c SUPercharglnga~ high compression ratios would both bf
line. ammonia suffers from low heat of combustion, diffi- expecteq t.<J bro<l.den fla.mmjb1lity ~l1nits. The ¢tacking of
cult ignitability, and low flame speed. However, these the ammonia prior" to induction is aMtI1er route, which is
problems can be overcome to some extent ,by, use of super- effective partially because of the ~ett)noad flamm-ab1lity
charging, high. compression ratios, ignition system modifi- limits ofhydro~en (4-74--Vol "10). Another pos~ibleroute is .
cations, and partial dissociation of the fuel before lflduction. available, which involve50 the use of limit-broadening ad-
As the authors' data show, ammonia-air mixtures are ditives in the fuel. Such 'an approach is not needed In the I
hard to ignite. Although minimum ignidon energies are case of hydrocarbon~, ~icll their wide flammability limits, •f
difficult to reproduce and to,interpret precisely, some light but could be very>useful in ammonia combUStio~'. Some l f
on the problem is shown by the work of Buckley and Husa, Indication thai flllmmalHllty limits tan be broadened in this
In (1) who showed that the minimum ignition energy for an w.ay is found in the w~rk o()f Egerton and Pawling (4), who
ammonia-air system was 680 millljoulesin a condeoserdis- showed that additive amounw.of f;t;hyl nitrate had a signif-
,~. -
charge. A comparable figure fQr ~ -heptane in air was 0.3 lcant effect ~ raisiJ!g tfie upr>¢: Jimit of flahlmability of
millijoules. This probably explains vhy the ignition system severallighthydroc~rDons.·' " . "~:'''~"~'' .(

modifications described in the paper markedly increased • There is 'also a second-rea~dl(for"a~ti~~at ad-
power output. '~ • ditives 'may improve the .combustion pro~~(;'\mOni~­
Another serious limitation on ammonia-air combustion ;lir· mixtures. This is based on some evidence indicating
involves the flammable' limits, or range of concentrations that the ammonia molecule must dissociate (at least par·
that will sustain a flame. In the' case of hydrocarbons, these tially) into nitrogen and hydrogen before'it wlll bum. As
limits are very broad. Thus, 0' -neptane, for example, wlll the authors point out, a catalyst is requ~ed to make this
bum under ambient conditions in air at any concentration react'ion proceed measurably at' temperatures below 900
between 1.1-6.7 Vols "10 (2). This gives wide latitude to F. This OpellS the poSSibility for an additive to be il)u.o-
the en'gine designer in his' quest for maximum power ;mder duced for the purpose of promoting such dissociation during €
some conditions (rich mixtures) or maximum economy under .co·mpression. An ammonia-soluble metal comppu\ld, de- €
other conditions (l~an mixtures). Further. the stoichiomet- composing in the engine to produce a fine dispersion of. solid e
ric concenrr:atlon occurs at 2.3"10 n-heptane. This allows metal or metal oxide: might be one possible approach. If
more than a factor of 2 in fuel c9ncentration on eithe.r side effective••it could fac'1litate ignitabllity. broaden flam- €

of the stoichiometric composition. .mability limits, and increase,flame speed. If this~proach (

The ammonia-air system is quite different. Here. the were successful techniGally, it might greatly add to the a
flammabiliry limits are 15 and 28 Vol "10 ammonia (I), which practicability of the IT1ilitary use of ammonia; since it would
In itself means that there is· less than a twofold variation pos- substantially reduce the need for major engine modifica- R
sible in' amm'onia concentration for a burnable mixture. The tions.
stoichiometric mixture occurs at 21. 9'70, with only a narrow . 10 ~1,r work with Itydrogen addition, the authors have
latitude allowed on either side of this point. Thlfs, under sho~ Ii~~ this approach is an attiactiv$',one for solution of
ambient conditions, all flammable mixtures mUst be near some of the ammonia combustion problems. ;;rheir res).llts p
stoichiometric. Undoubtedly, higher temperatures and pres- may be somewha; optimistic in relation to practical ap-
Stires will somewhat broaden this range, so that a wider range proache~ since the cracking of ammonia would iiltroolice t

of mixtures can be burned in an engine than indicated by njrrogen as well as hydrogen, and the increased dilution , .~
these figures. An interpretation of some of the eXhalst~om­ would operate to reduce some of the gains shown' when hy - ' .
position data in the authors' 'Pable 2 can be bl!sed o{;nfs drogen is added. From an energy standpoint, the crac'king' ,
approach. Thus,; fuel mixture 2, contairifng ammonia plus of ammonia prior to induction Into the engine has the effect
98. ~ of the theore·tical air, still burns only 68.8"10 of the of increasing the available. energy by nearly 13"10 on a wei.ght 1
ammonia inducted. RecogniZing that some miNture in ho- basis. However, because the dissociation produ~s occupy A
mogeneity probably exists In this system, we can theorize
that the part of the charge in the center of the combustion
.
twice the volume of the ammonia, the energy would de-
'
crease on a volumetric basis by about fP/o. Thus, an addi--
c
chamber is well insulated from the walls, and thus probably tional problem may be encountered in practice where it
burns completely because its temperarure is high and its would be desired to maximize the mass of fuel and air in- tl
flammability l'imits fairly broad. However, the portion ducted intO the cylinder. ~ t}

of the charge near the walls is cooler and has reduced flam c Some time ago, Messrs. Kei:ley, Eelt. and Adams in
mability limits, so that quite likely a 'substantial' portion Ethyl Corporation's Detroit Research.Laboratories briefly ex.. c
of it is outside the combustible range and does not burn. amined 'be engine perforrnanl;e of ammonia In a single cyl- n
In addition to the flammability problem encountered In . inder Waukesha engine with variable c.ompression ratio n

"
, ,
~:..
-, - 0<;:<
,
.,' 4, "

.. ' ' . ,'*

. , '

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\'-~ '-..,,"
: : .. 'I', . "

31,' ,w, Co'~NEJ..IUS:


" . . \.
,ET ~L
'!~ • '.. ~<l ~ ; ..

and ren:lOvable dome head, • They maitained intake air did-'l$t i~v~ti~ate tlte ef~ects ?f d~~iatjO~,ofa~mon1a.
temperature at 130 F. )ac,ket temperatu\e at 230 F. com- and W~ ext41ded our.w9rk to, compression-ignition ~ng1nes.
press£on ratio at S,5. ' and 'manifold pressure essentially ~' We agr~ compr~rely with .the r~sults 'the authors preseilt; •
..
atmospherid'. Spark. energy ,supplied by the eJ1gine's Bendix. We wobld lii<e to offer a few 6&~l'Y atlon's on 'the perfonnan«e •
CR 4-1 magneto, was 'about 80 millijoules. Even at the 10\0{ of compression-ignition engines oPerated on ammonia.
,spee<l of 600 rpm, they encounter;ed poor combustion, as' The Armed Forc~~ titVlf1to'ry'inci~es'!",high fritction of
indicatesl by a brake thermal effiCiency of 13.75"10. TIlis vehicles \Vith compression-igflition englIfus and they, as well
compares with a ... alue of 22.2% for isooctane containing 3 as spatk.Jigniti?n. must be accommodated.in the en:ergy d~-'
ml TEL/gal under the san1l' condit{pns. ' \'l.hen two spar'\< pOt conc~pt. We were able to opetltea erR cetane method
plugs ':were fired simultaneoilsly, the value for ammonia iIi- , .eodg1.ne on pme ari1l1~onia a?~,.amn1bnia wi,th sever~l adcli- ,
crease4 to 18.50/0. By tbe addition,al technique of increas- , ,tive~. ,Ammonia.o(or ammonill pIllS ad'ditives) was injected
ing tJn{ com'pression ratio to .12.65. the brake thennal ef- in-conventional fatMon. although it 'ias n~essati to ad ~ ,
.: ...
ficiency w,\s raised to 21'70. ~n general, their c,ondusiol1s vance'inject!<;ln timi.rig greatly and to use a:p~unge~_and bush.
from' this work support those,of the authors.'" ing assembly tn the injection pump larger ,in diSplacement'
Through their Study. the authors have shown that there than the one nonnally used in the ,cetane method eng1ne .•;,
would be no incentive to use ammoni,a as a fuel in the ci- The engine was started on kerosene, and then switched to
~ilian market as long '<is hydrocarbon~ are 'available, ;ammonia., TIle engine. would not restart' on pure a~onia
Even in the military context; much further work JJeeds , at_35:;J. {;omp~ession ratio with normal coolant aoo 'inlet air
to be done to clearly define the-po!entiality of the gyerall tem~ratures. ' However, we were able to -attain igni~ion
concept. The prescnt' wGrk is an ellcellent beginning on the and regular combUstion by raising coolant temperature
usefUlness of ammonia in gasoline engines, Additional wotk to 370F and !l{rtem,p:etatur~ to 270"F.~ower 'putput ''J
needs to be, done on dies~l-cycle eng'Wes and on multi fuel at these conditions w'as slightly less than that obtained att<
~~gines. These engines ,will encounter other problems. ,due normal conditions with kerosene. We did not analyze the
to the proba1;lle low cetane number o( ammonia and the dif- exhaust, •but it had a very str~rg odor ofaininonla. Our .
ficulty of keeping a stratified Gharge within (he flammabil- investigation 6fl'a:dditives, was limited to 'of.l1y a few chQices ,
'.
ity limits, Detailed comiderationrreeds to be given to the ~eYeial were effective; they permitted ignition and' reiul~1t
economics of the entire concept; including ROt' on.1y the ·en- combusti<;>n to be attained with somewhat lower compression'
ergy depot aspectS, bUh also the complex task of modifying' ratio and coolant ~nd air te!I)pe~atures.· , , ,
engines:without renderi!lg them so cumbersome as to be in- Fro!Tl'these r&nlts and ideas,they generaJ:ed, l"ebelieve
effectiv_elf-~iR(l!!y, the overall' ~valuation,of the syStem in th~t with some engLne modifications~and with proper asldi·
tenns ~fk5'n:petit1v-e:sost-effectiveness ••in n;lation to pres- tive treatment, it may be posslb'1e to mak.e compression-' ",'
ent me}hods of wartime fuel ~upply. will probably' be , ignition engk...s operate satis'factorily on ammonia-based
the factor that determines whether it ever becomes a re- fuel. The .alternate. 6f course,- is to convert all compres-
a Ii t)' , • " sion-ignition: engines to spark ignition. More work is nee-
,'essary to det,enn~e which would be-Ithe best solution.
REFERENCIOS

1. Buckley and Husa, Chern. Eng. Prog .58, 81 (1962). P. S. MYERS AND b. A: UYHjARJ\
2. Lewis and von Elbe, "Combusti,on. Flames and Ex'~ University o.f Wisconsin • . ;;
plosions. - New York. 1951.
3. Perry, ·Chemical Engineers' Handbook: -,Third' Edi- THE ENERO;Y. DEPOT concept ha; been ofcJn~!derable 1n- ,
t
tion. p. 1587. , ' terest to the discUssors. In 1962 the dl$cussors and otherco-.ll,
4, Egerton and Powling, Proe. Roy, Soc. A 193. 172;"~ workers p~ilent~ a pape] emilie<! "Portable Power Ftq,m
190 (1949). NohportableEnergf Squrces.':,. This paper -was. presented, _
at -the National SAE p'ower-pl~~' me~qng in' Philadelphia • .'
and published in the 1963 SAE Ttans';ctions. THe basicpfu-
T. O. WAGNER pose of this p~per was to'set! what sOI!Jtions .niight;be found
American Oil Co. to the problem of providing an·~nergy supply suitable for
, portable"PQ\i.'et. plants when o~: pt~sent petroleum supplies
}.IES;SRS' CORNELll'S, Hl'ELLMANTEL AND MITCHELL have y.rere exhausted. While this is II sJightly dif.f~re~t problem,
conducted a very sensible and, logical program to explo~e than the one under disctiSsion taday. there' are many simi,-
the Suitability of ammonia as an engine fuel. We comme,nL lari'ties and the eonclusions are remarkably si~ila;. "
.~ "
them for their work, ',. ' Inasmuch, as two different grou~ consi<iering two ,dif - '. \ "
. • to'
"
During 1963, C. J. Domkeanq 1 at thE; Amtr,ican Oil fe rent , but ~e'lated. fn-oblems reached" iUmilat'conclusions.
Company Laboratories investigated the perlonnance of am- it would appear ~at theSe conclUsiOns were fundamemal and
monia in engines. The approach and sc;:ope of our work Was sh~ui'd be emphasized. The first of thesecop;lf~on cond'lu-
much like that of the General,tylotors ~ork except that we' sions is"ihat, barring- tine~~c.te!l .. bre~kthI6ughs .. c)1err:t:ical- -.-0.

-~'" '~-,(' ,,'\0

'. ~ "'. , \

\
.' .


.\

(
(
~.

". .4
AMMONIA AS AN ENGINE FUEL
.. 319

storage of energy is thl} only practical engineering technique. mixture have been significantly less if hydrClgen and nitroge)1
AU other possible techniques are all too bUlky, either be- rather than just hydrogen had be?n added? "Woula it have .
. cause of high shielding requirements or beca~e of .the large not been just as easy. -experimentar'ly. to h~v~ aaded hy.·(
bulk of the energy storage material and system. drQgen aijd nitrogen in the proper proportionS?; . • '.. ~
The second common conclusion i~ tllat only 'ij1aterials . The di~ussors would also like to...rai,se t~ Buestion of"
avallable on a large scale,. that 15-; .··~.,.ater ilrtd air. can ~ whethesr or not the thermal inertia oUBe d1~sociator. which·
considered for production of fuel becau~e of, th~ large quan- decompos'es the amTn:onia' to prodUGe:the hidrogen, would ..
tities of mat«Ial involved. The implication here. is that be a complicating factQr in the d~slgn of tire engine~dis.
1
sodator system? Focex,ample, ifthe engine y.'ere operating
• .'.r . . t • •

hydrogeas going to be the basle means for stormg the en\:


ergy ori~ally obtained. from nuclear or sopie other sta- at low load with consequent 10W~(S~oci~tortetnperatures ..
tionary power source. . . and the thronie were suddenly opened, ~equiring increased
" The third common c0n<;lusion' is that it will be necessary ,quantities of ammonia to be disSOCi..at~ .. ,.~..WOUld the disso-
to store the fuel in the liquid fonn or its equivalent".· Hy-' clator,Pe' 'able to supply these increas "; ntities?
drogen cari. of course, be combined with other compounds . · I t is als9 interesting to note in Fl.&._· . Q.f the Corne li us
such as nitrogen ·to form easily llquifiable fuels. If this pro- haper thar 3"/0 hydrogen addition does hot p~uce any sig-
cedurtcis followed. oile of the .essential reqt).irements is tha.t niflcant improvement over"" 'Z'/o except at the very highest
the resulting Juel be stable both chemically and with respect speed of 4000 rpm, Can the authors give apy explanation
tp shook. ' of this "leveling off" with inoceased hydrogrn addition?
n'
. ' "The fourth conclusion is that it was undesirable to manu-
facture a fuel containing oxygen inasmuch as oxygen is read- MORTON S. SILBERSTEIN
,.
J lly available in" ~e air free of charge.' ' United Nuclear Corp.
t,
-~ . It is interesUng to note that the papers by Mr.. Rosenthal .
and Mr. Grimes, as .well as oUr eatlier paper., reached these THE PAPERS PRESENTED in this session on the. Energy Depot
.

c<>mmon conclusions. It should be clear that these conclu- (;oncept deal primarily with the productio)1 fU~1 in the field
. ions are applicable when c'onsipering,portable' power plants. and the utilization of'tllis fuel to power atmy Vehicles. In
Differell1 conclusions might be- reached when conside.ring all o(th~ concepts. discussed. an inhe'rem ~art of the energy
sta'tionary power plants. , . depot is a mobile nuclea.r power plam which generates the
, :it is Pointed out in the papers that the numberofpotentiai electric power required as input for the fuel pltlduction pro-
fuels containing hydrogen and other readily availJible com- cess. I would like to offer some brief remarks about the nu-
pounc!.s, 'are very limited. As the paper by Cornelius and clear power generating porti~tl of~e energy depot.
~ co authors points out, the fuel finally chosen. ammonia, • This power 's6urce is being developed uAder the Military .'
l1a~ certain'combustion problems.' These. combustion prob'- .compact Reactor (MeR) program, for which Allison Divi- , . of'

lems seem to arise primarily because of the low energy con -.. sion, Ge~etal Motors Corporittion is the prime contractor.
tent per cubic fool' of mixture, In this respect the beh"llv ior United Nuclear Corporation, whom I represent, has the re-
of the amm~mia -air mixture reminds one of the lean mix- spol1Sibiliry as subcontractor t·o. All~on for design and .devel-
ture! of conventi0nal fuels which also haye comparatively opment of the nuclear reactor portion of the MCR.
..0. low heating values per £~bic foot pf mixture . Thus, h is One of the <\fcompl1shments of this e~rt has been the,
. . very interesting to irote', with the exception of..nu;:p,ulence. desig'n of an MGR'un1t for a'n electric output in 'the same
all· of the steps taken to improve comblistion perfotmance -3000 kw range for .\"hfch the Allison and Allis -Chalmers en
'of ammonia as an eng,ine fuel increased the energy conr;m er&y dePft conceptual designs"were e.valua'ted.
per cubic foot of m~ture at the time of spark, that is. in- . To m~t the size,{rJtl weightrequire~ept's of mobility,
creased compression ratio. turbocharging. and so forth. the MCR i'5 packaged in modules Glompapb)e to those de-
The thought of improving combustion by enrichihg the scribed for the various energy depot fl,lel" proceSsing units.
ammonia -air. mixture with hydrogen is intriguing 'and io- These pac;kages are trailer or truck mounted for operation
genibus. We do have some questions, however. regarding. in the field. and are transportal1l.e overland on thei~ trailers
,.the way in which this was 'accomplished, particUlarly, in or alternatively by air' or sea. '
view of the comments just made. ~egarding'the low heating T~e nuclear reactor, surraundd by its bio~cal shwld,
~alue per cubic foot o(the ammonia -air .mi~ture.' II we which must meet extreme low ~ight requirlr[leAts com-
interpret properly the experiments conducted b~{ Cornelius pared with ordinary reactor shi.~lds, is tne ba~ic source of·
and his :alisociates. the tests were run by ad.ding hydrogen themal energ)', Its heat is transferred to ;l liqUid metal .
only io 'the ammol1i~ -ait rif!Xtll9Y' The dissoci~tion of am'-' coolant, which ultimately tie.ats air in a.heat exchanger.
monia, however; will p'roduce both hy.tlrogen and nitrogen. The heated air 'drivesan open Brayton cy'clegas turbine en-
Is' it proposed to sepa"tate the hydr~g~nand hitr~en, dis- gine, which drives an alternator whosaelectri<;. output is the '1
·carding the nitrogen and .adding the' hydrogen to. the am- power source for the fuel manufacturing' units. Auxiliary
1
monia "air mixl;Ure? It not, should not .the experimertts have ele~ti'ieal' equipment and controls for the ,nuclea-r planr are
.... been run with the addition of both hydrog~n and nitrogen, to housed in separate units connec!ft<d i~'the reatter and engine
~ the ammonia-air mixture? Would the ~eating value of the by electrfc cabling. . 0

/
.....
.
320 w. CORNELIUS, ET AL

The energy depot constitutes an extremely attraqlve and 1. The picture shows a finished' portion of the Ledo Road.
logical application for nuclear power. " This is an example Grades in this area were as higI1 as 14 to 111'/0, There was'
of where the demand for long time operation without addi- one short stretch at 2ffJ/o.
tional fuel supplies is uniquely sUflllled by a nUclear energy J, This Is a Korean river with ,a bridge out. ,
source. .,', K, Korea - just back of the combat lirte, "This dirt road
!vir. Rosenthal's paPe~ pointed out the weight attractive- with up to 12"/0 gr~des was the only line of communication,
ness o,f the energy depot in comparison with the continued es
A pipeline came within 15 mi1 »)f this rpad,
L. Typical Korean terrain.":' .,0., ,~\
'
supply of gasoline fuel. and' the cost studies that have now
Deen initiated. There are, of cOUl'Se, uses .of the nuclear M, This photograph was taken in Korea and shows fuel
powered energy depot where il1dependence.from exremaf storage for' thetem stove~, Kerosene wJs used. What do
suppli~S is an "ass~twhiCh c~nl'lot be measute.d ~n dollars, for we d.o when we use ammonia? ,-

(S£f
f instance, the holding of a key spot which wQliltl. otherwise
be lost. Nevertheless, it is of some interest to note, t~'at
N. Here are 6 in. pipelines and a pumping station in
Korea. These 6 in. lines with a pumping station every.I6.til
miles would handle 3300 gal/hr, Tbey would refuel 10 '
although the cost of uranium fuel and its associated plant
are generally considered to be "high under military circum- new M-60 tanks per hour, The newer welded 6 in. and
stances, the cost of delIVered gasoline can also be surprls- 8 in. pipelines operating at higher pressure~ will handle sev-
ingly high. eral times as much fuel. •
A simplified analysis of several special wartime situa- There is every reason to be1.leve that South Viemam (and
tions shows that the predominant cost of supplying a major the territories north and west of South Viemam) has equally
defense position is oft!n that of the replacement value of diffiCUlt terrain. Certainly, my recent visit,to Thailand
aircraft al;d ships lost in bringing in the supplies. On this would confirm this. ' ..
,basis, considering such instances as Tobruk and Malta in The problems I visualize can be summarized"by the fol"
World War n (for which the necessary statistics are described loWing comments: .
by. \V1nston.Churchi,V in his books), delivered gasoline is Apparently, these Mobile Energy Depot modules weigh
found t? cost $50-$80/ga1. In different circumsta~ces, about 30,000 lb and a complete unit about 100,000 lb. It,
then, gasoline may range in value from the $.30 or so, per takes a plane nearly the size of the 707 to carry 3D, 000
gal: available at the local filling station up to numbers hun- pounds. There are not many military air strips [n the area
dre"d.;. of times as great under front line fighting conditions,
, .
E J. GAY
ConsUlting Engineer

THE MOBILE ENERGY depot modules present"~evepl lQgl,~~kal


problems, which I tOink,might 'be illustrated by Figs.' B-N,
B, This is China on the old Burma -China Roa'd between
Kunming and Chungking, This~I13f the road is called
the "Ladder.· It has no guard rails and steep grades, with
a 1/4 in of slime. When raining the Goer just wouldn'r go!
Only a 6 x 6 or , x 8 'would do the job. "
C, This is another view of the old ~urma.China Road '.'
D, The photograph shows typical te'rrain between E:hina"'"
an~ .northeast India, We flew petroleum products over this
area 'until the pipelines were built.
, E. Tllis is up front on ~he Ledo Road near Myitkyina; you
"needed, snowshoes here. ~ .. .
. F The Ledo Road where a temporary wooden bridge with
a load limit of 4 to 5.tons and a 4 in. pipeline on each side
was built,
G, Two of the 4 in, pipelines - .jhead of the finished
road, Tl'iese 4 in, coupled pipeline.s handled 1500 ga,lihr/
line. We shipped aViation gas - motot gasoline and diesel
fuel via these lines. There was a pumping station every 8
. mil.es. One of these lines could refuel seven of the old M-4
tanks/hr .
H. A portion of theLedo R.oad that was near completion
an.d included a Bail~y bridge and mules! Fig, B. - Burma -China road

/
AMMONIA AS AN ENGINE fUEL 321 322

where we might engage in combat that will take the 707.


A 16-ton Goer weighing 39,000 Ib without a payload will
be needed to carry the 30, 000 Ib modules. The 8-ton Goer'
suggested for transporting the hydrogen or ammonia weighs
28,200 Ib without a payload. These two vehicles will also
need aircraft of large payload capacity..
In wartime, energy is needed for many things besides mov-
-ing vehicles. Cooking and s.pace heating are two major
Jtems. FifT4' per cent of the fuel sypply for Korea, during
t~e winter months, was for space heiting,
At no time dUring World War n or the Korean War was
there an acute shortage of fuel. There were some close calls
however I - The.re was fuel in Sicily before there was food.
General Paton r<in away from his fuel supply. When told to
collect his -5-gal gasoline cans, he replied he was not a gar-
bage collector. He was a great general, but not good at
logistics. . I • •
-(~,.,
We blew up the rail tank cars and fuel dumps at G,lfsa \c •
in Nonh Africa when we thought-we were going to lose the :~"'4
town. We had to refuel and regather our equipment after

Fig. C - Burma -China road


q

Fig. D - Typical terrain in C~na and northeast


India "
W, CORNEUUS. ET AL

.~ .

Fig. F - Ledo'road showing 4 in pipelines

fig. G - 4 in, pipelines

fig, H - Ledo road under 'construction


AMMONIA AS AN ENGINE F'UEL 323

Fig. I . Finished portion of the Ledo ro~d

.....

Fig. ] • Korean river

." Fig. L· TYPlca"\orean terrain

Fig. K • Korea· ill.st back of the combat line


.J24 W. CORNELIUS. ET AL AM
~ .

the kickjng around we gOt at Kasserine Pass. \Ve<lid the refueUng the Anny's perfonnance specifiGatio/lS for vehicles LT.
at night from conventional 5. 000 gal tractor-nailers (with no require that -they operate satisfactorily from + 115 F to Un!
Iigh ts) diIectly inta vehicles and into 5 -gal cans. -25 F without the use of starting aids othet than mani-
<
fold heaters or gli)w plugs. From -z5,F to .. 65 F, start- .AS
ing and he;lting aids may be used.' Fuel temperatures of ami
+ 145 F have been measured in the desert. There is no
lng
con
reas~n . to believe that the storage vessels (or Ilydrogen
stltl
and/or ammonia would not be exposed to the u.me tem-
peratures. to I
Ene
Our M -60 tank is capable of a 24 hr battlefield day with- .em
OUI refueling. Newer concepts talk' of a 36-hr battlefield a p
day. To achieve this with al11monia. would require 2.8 wht
times dle volume of fuel. which would make an impossible
sized tank; or would reduce the battlefield day by the same trel
amount, for example, from 24 he t6 8.6 hr. ren
ma
For many years, our top military command has failed to
ove
recognize tile need for maximum effort in studying the pro-
and
tection .0Cour sup lines by sea in time of war. Preoccu-
effl
pation with the issile may have been the· cause . I am
glad to note f m receit published data that antisubmarine
ah
Fig. 1>.1 - Korea - fuel storage for the tem stoves warfare pIa 109 is now being emphaslzed I ter
Del
ha,
a n
linl
bee
lie'
an

fur
car
Til<
are
a g
abJ
yOl
CO!
ce'l
of

COl
cor
me
eXI
in~

of
SU]
we
in!
Fig. N - Korea - 6 in. pipelines and a pumping station pe
Iir
air
ins
lei

AMMONIA AS AN ENGINE FUEL .V2t3


325

LT. COL, KERMIT O. LINDELL about the basic problem, let me illustrate it in 11 different ges!
United Stat,es Army manner. You have, on one band. 'the tremendous energy • onl:
density available in a nuclear reactor; and. dn the otherhand, and
.AS A RESULT of the discussions presented, I would like to . a la~, growing requirement for energy 'to operate vehicles, Mol
ampltfy and perhaps clarify a few of the points presented diu- aircraft and other equipment. How do you convert t1~e en·
ing the session. First of al1. the cost -effectiveness of the ergy of the reactor into a for,m which will be usable as.fuel av
concept has not been evaluated. The Stanford Research In- by vehicles and aircraft? If. at the same time, you can eli- dis!
stitute has just recently heenawarded a gbVemment contract minate the.~equirement for an extensive. 'distrjbution system am
to perform an operational analysis of the Nuclear Powered and relatively fixed 'and vUlnerabl,e fuef supply depots, a des
Energy Depot concept to include an evaluation of the cost- maj~r mlUtary advantage may accrue. This is.the basic f~
effec tiveness. As the study is just getting underway, even problem and the NUclear Powered En¢l'gy Depot yonce'pt df- soc
a preliminary estimate is' not available at this time. as to fers one possible means of solving th~sproo'len1. Direct trans· fue
whether or not the concept is econ?micany attractive. mission of electrical energy. without wires; offers, perhaps. pal
The cost -effectiveness of a con~ept sucl1 as this is ex - another mearls of sol~ing the 6asfC problem, re2
tremely difficult to evaluate, With respect to Mr. Gay's \ .
remarks concerning the Ledo Road. some 300. planes and, AUTHOR'S CLOSURE TO DISCUSSION, Iii;

many lives were lost during World War II delivering supplie's by W. CORNELIUS cu
over "The Hump" into China. If a concept may save lives dn
and equipment, how do you factor this element into a cost- THE DIsCUSSION OF Dr. R. Flannery raises several signifi- ml
effectiveness analysis? Is a life worth ten thousand dqllars, .cant points. Some of these are yovercd in greate.r detail in fie
a hundred thousand dollars, or a million dollars? As a mat- Mr, Rosenthal's paper (p. 2 7 4 ) . ' to
ter of fact, I might suggest tha(lf a Nuclear Powered Energy. • The majoruseoffuelinthe Army isin vehicll!s;thismore ftc
Depot had been available during World War n, it may not ·diffi~J.I1t 'c~5e was treated fU$J. Energy depot hi'els can be irs
have been necessary to construct the Ledo Road to provide .... used in modified space- heaters and to power tl~ equivalent we
a means of supplying troOps in China: a substitute fdr~g~lSO­ of motor·g~neratorS~ts 0 •
tic

line, the major item of supply involved, probably '2~ld have' Direct consumption of ammonia in a fuel ce:ll\fould be bl
been manufactured in . China,. This type of operation,
...
I he- a'mOre. ideal solution if adequate performance could be' ob-
lieve; is an excel1ent exampleof an actual s,i~ation,where ~ained. Rand D should be directed toward this end. More it
ill
an Energy Depot could have been profitably ~ll)ploYJd' recen.t stu~ies ha,ve indicated that 25¢ fWVJ.~ ..... r.)Urn'.~'.
Jon i~ .
Also. it is extremely difficult to forecasr ~he nature of t~e dlssoclator may be a conservatwe eJ1fJl~~Qr . IItl- ge
future warfare, nuclear warfare, World Wa,r,n .and Korea llzatlon. • '.• ' :\., ." tIl
, I . ..~

can no longer be considered as valid historica1 examples 0 The, stare of the an of fuel cells has adVanced rapidly, tt
The exac.l nature of the conditions on a nuclear battlefield Fuer eel) people today talk of the pOSSibi~ of bUilding fuel e'
ilre stil1 a matter of speculation, To quote•. il) substance, cell modules withi~ Ii factor of 2 of the p,roj~cte-d fuel cell c<
w
a general officer I heard speak several years ago; "You prob- modules .
The air pllification chemiCal requirements''Were prQ.iected te
ably won't know what tyJ>l< of tactics you will employ until'
you become actively engaged in a nuclear war 0" It is re- '~e maximl;lm theoretical requirements to ;femove all of
It
cognized, however, that the Army must s~ek advanced..con- the acidic gases from three times the air requirements of the
cepts of supply to supplement or replace the present concepts cell. Continued experimental stuc!ies hpye indicated that
of logistical operations 0 • marked reductions can be made and air purification chemi-
Secondly, I would like to point out that the Energy Depot cals would be a small requirem~nt iIi tlte .fut.'/~e, .
concept is not, at this stage in the development, fixed in
concrete If there is a means of producing, in Quanti ty" a
0 AUTHORS' CLOSURE T.O DISCUSSION'.
more suitable fuel under the same constraints, we would be by L. W', HUEL~\AANTEL, AND H. R. MITCHELL
extremely interested; for an example, a process for produc-
ing methanol. THE AUTHORS W~H to express their appreciation for the·
Thirdly, let me reiterate thar during the evolutionary phase complimentary ana constructive temarks regarding the paper
of development, it is intended that ammonia be used as a by the several discussors. The prepared discusSions have aided
supplement to norm!l petroleum supplies Not all ulJ1.ts., in clarifying cenain imponam aspects of the energy depot
0

would necessarily be eqUipped with vehicles capable oTbum- concept.


.. ' ..
ing ammonia, The capabiliry to use ammonia as well as With regard to Dr Rifkirr's cOn')ments, we agree that it
0

petroleum products in vehicles and Army' aircraft would be would be worthwhile t9 investigate the use of fuel additives
limited to designated units apd/or special situations suth as other than hydrogen to promote the combusllon of ammonia',
airhead operations or deep penetrations. In these particul\lr In our investigation. we used only hydrogen to conform with
instances, it might l>\': 'extre~ely difficult to fu"pl'ly ~tro­ the initial ground rules that al1 fuel constituents be producl!d
leum fuels utilizing present distribution procedures 0 from readily available materials. It might prove to be more
In conclusion, to insure that there is no misunderstanding 'feasible to use an ammonia-soluble metal compound as sug-
..
.. '
...
126 W. CORNELIUS. ET AL

gcsted by Dr. Rifkin ramer than hydrogen if the additlO!l of paper that satisfactory fUll throttle engine powllt may be de-
only a small amount of the compound tv the fuel is required veloped solely by supercharging 'without any recourse 'to "y-
and, the provi~ion of this compo\Hl(j ,does not invalidate the drogen addition, In addition to this q~S~iohable thermal
\\obi Ie Energy Depot c'oncepr. interia of a dissociator, the po~sib1lity exists that the engine
I
le ,};" Mcr~ase in energy.content of the fue I charge on exhaust temperature may flot be high enough at low engine
a volu, ehic basis as mentioned by Dr, Rifl<in caused by dle part load conditions to insure adetlua[e',h.ydr6gen emission
di»oci tion of the ammonia is incurre.d only if all of the from a thermally heated dissicia1oi;· It was for this reason
ilIa is dissociated. Ho¥eve~: in' order to proviCle the that an electrically ),e~te.d tf~f'r(lissoCiat~rwas inv"csli-
desire 2.~'-:' by weight concentrati~n qf liydrogen in the gated by the authors..':i;?!?-:' ~. __ " '. ;,'
t!e 1 .1ixlUre, only about 12. S"''' of the ammonia .,.'TIust be dis - The question raisedp/;~·'~;·:i., ~r~~ri'd' Uyeliara' regarding
;o<:late.d. and hence theqec rease iJJ energy content of the tlie general ··levelini';'~·'~J!.o:werwith increasing
fuel is only about 1.71". This decrease is small)."hen.com~ hyarogen addition abov ;;~~:pikined by oomparlng
pared 10 the Iarge increase in combustion effid!'-ncy that is th!'- r!'-lati;e energy cont\~ms of H~ic~ome~ic ammonia air
realized "hen hydrogen is added to the ~mmol1!a. • and ,hydrogen air mixtures on an .equ.d.volume basis. ,The
. h'e a;rree
"
with Dr. Rifkin thai~here is presentlv'no
J
iiicen i heating value of . the hydrogen air mixtpre IS only about 4'10
live to use ammonia as a fuel for com'fnercial vehicles. Ihe ,greater than thai of the ammonia' air tihxrure. Therdore,
current cost of prodUcing ammonia woul6 ha\'e t(1 be ,,, rP.d~ced only a relfo~ively small increase in power can be expected I
."
drastically, to make it competitive il~ cost with -qasoli,l'e. As as t1e } cOl)centration of hydrogen in an ammonia -air ml x-
mentioned in the paper, an engine ;,.ould have iO be"modi- . ture. is inc.reased above rhe amount required as a combustion
fied and certain auxiliarY
'J
s"stems
]
and ~ontrols would' have promoter for ammonia. \\Ie found also lhat lhe spark advance
to be incorpOTated. A~y ,ignifiean! emission of ammonia ,requi~d forniaximum engine power differed appreciably
from the engine tailpipe could not be tolerated bec~~se ~f for immonia air mixttires and 'the investigated ammonia hy-
its t.rritating odor, ~ega~ding the military use ot thiS fJl;¢J. drJgen air mixtu~es. We conjectured that some loslofpower
we agree '''it,h Dr, Rifkin that il much J1)ore thorough E!:valua-' d:'eu':red In trying to. compromise these incompanble spark
tion of the entire conceft ·~"iJl.be reqtlired ~e~ore its n~asi -Ii:' 'dvan~e require~~nts.
b! li ty c an be ascertained. '
Drs, ~lyers and Uyeha;ra rais~d the questioiJ as to ·,,.hether11 . .
Mr ,\v'!;gner's comment~ ~garding his investigatIon of
it would have be~n nlOrc a ppro'prl ate. dUring our'eligfne' tes~,~ ',.,,/nmonla as'a fuel for compreSS1~n Igl1!tlOn englllesarc ap-
ing program to have added z mixture of nitrogen and hYd~',.,.~.l?rJate smce our work was confmed to spark Igl1ltlOI1 en-
gen to the ammonia r~ther than hydrogen 'alone 'ro simuf~;~iJles, \\I,!- concu~ with him that the cOl11buSion. of amrofnia
, the ammonia dissociation products, We considered doing ,:."" I~ a comp,sslOn IgllltlOn ;ngll1e should also be Illvestlgated.
this when we Initiated our hyd~ogen addition studies. How-, since' a lar.g~ [lUmber of mi litaty vehicles are powered pres-
ever oi!Ycalcul.ltlons indicated that the decrease In energy ently by dIesel engInes..
cont~nt of the,fuel mix.ture due 10' this a~ilion,n ni trogen In summary, we wish ~o emphasize thaI the work desc ribed
would 'amount'to only about 1.7"/", Also. wedid not wish in our paper was performed during a relatively shon period
to further complicate the'f~el supply syste\T1 by adding a of time. Engine testing was started in March of 1963 and
third ga3 s u p p l y , ' -1 was concluded in January of 1964. Basic ammonia dissocla-
of
Regarding the thermal il'fert{a th~ diss'~iator. we be - tion studies were conducted through the summer of 1964.
iieve that a full scale dissociator will have to be constructed ngine tests were performed only at steady state operating
and tested on an engine in order to determine the magni- 'onditions whi using manual controls. No transient en-
tude of this problem. We appreciate that some lag in ~n- ine'conditl; were inveHigated. In view of the construc-
gine acceleration will result -through the use of a dissociator. ive criti sm of the paper by the several dlscussors as well
This may be compensated panrally by the fact'that less hy - as OUI W1l thoughts on the matter. we believe lhat addi-
9rogen (as a percent of the totill fuel supplied) is reqUired tion srudies are needed to prOVide a more exhaustive eval-
when operating at fUll thrOttle with a supercharg~r than whe', tion of ammonia as a fuel for mtlit~ry vehicles powered
run:;ing at part load. In fact, w.e have mentioned in our by spark -ignited engines.

©sociery of A lltomotive E~gineers. Inc;, 1966 "


Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 12·14987 Printed in U. S . A