Multi-fuel scaled-down autothermal pure H2 generator: Design and proof of concept

Michael Shoham Patrascu*, Moshe Sheintuch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


This article presents experimental results of an autothermal scaled-down system for H2 production. Pure atmospheric pressure H2, separated in situ by Pd-Ag membranes, is produced by steam reforming (SR) of methane, ethanol, or glycerol. Oxidizing the SR effluents in a separate compartment supplies the heat. The oxidation feed is axially distributed to avoid hotspots. The 1.3 L system, comprises 100 cm2 of membrane area, and generates H2 flow rate equivalent to 0.15 kW at an efficiency of ∼25%. This process leads to comparable performance when different fuels are used. A mathematical model, validated by the measurements, predicts that increasing the membrane area relative to the outer surface area will substantially increase the efficiency and power output. This design serves as proof of concept for on-board pure H2 generators, with flexible fuel sources, and holds a great promise to reduce the need for special H2 transport and storage technologies for portable or stationary applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2112-2125
Number of pages14
JournalAICHE Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Autothermal reforming
  • Biofuels
  • Hydrogen production
  • Membrane reactors
  • Steam reforming


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