Motorola Demonstrates Gas-Powered Fuel Cell

October 02, 2001 by Jeff Shepard

Motorola Inc. (Schaumberg, IL) announced that they have successfully demonstrated a methane gas-powered fuel cell, which can provide enough power between chargings for a month of cell phone calls.

The fuel cell is essentially a miniature electrochemical plant that fits into a belt holster. Inside the cell, methane is stored in an area the size of a ballpoint pen's ink holder. A chemical reaction releases oxygen, heat and electricity. The electricity then either powers the phone directly or charges another battery that can then power the phone.

The company has managed to combine each of the working parts (guiding the methane's path and ensuring the electricity is sent to the phone) into a device that measures about 2in x 4in x 0.50in. Motorola did not predict when it will sell the batteries on a wide scale.