Hydrogen-Oxygen Fuel Cell (Bacon Cell)
The Hydrogen-Oxygen Fuel Cell was designed and first demonstrated publicly by Bacon in the year 1959. It was used as a primary source of electrical energy in the Apollo space program. The cell consists of two porous carbon electrodes impregnated with a suitable catalyst such as Pt, Ag, CoO, etc. The space between the two electrodes is filled with a concentrated solution of KOH or NaOH which serves as an electrolyte. 2H2 gas and O2 gas are bubbled into the electrolyte through the porous carbon electrodes. Thus the overall reaction involves the combination of hydrogen gas and oxygen gas to form water. The cell runs continuously until the reactant's supply is exhausted. This type of cell operates efficiently in the temperature range 343 K to 413 K and provides a potential of about 0.9 V.