HYDROGEN SENSOR WITH HIGHEST SENSITIVITY AND SELECTIVITY BASED ON MICRO-ELECTRO-MECHANICAL SENSOR STRUCTURES
In a continuation of the HyProS this HYPOS project is researching a new sensor concept. The volume expansion of Pd during hydrogen storage is to be tested as a measuring principle. The research work at HyProS has already shown that hydrogen sensors based on physical switching of Pd or Pd alloys can in principle detect hydrogen concentrations between 0.01 vol% and 100 vol% without cross-sensitivities, especially to methane. This makes these sensors particularly suitable for applications in which gas mixtures with more than two gases and changing hydrogen concentrations near and within the explosion limits of hydrogen are given. The new principle of the MEMS sensors is to be developed within the project at TRL 5. A further development to TRL8 is aimed at.
The existing gas infrastructure represents an enormous potential for the transport and storage of hydrogen. The chemical composition of natural gas and thus its combustion properties will be subject to greater spatial and temporal fluctuations in the future. For various production processes constant and controllable operating conditions are required to a high degree in order to ensure optimal product quality and energetic efficiency with low pollutant emissions at the same time. With the project results an important contribution to the rededication of natural gas networks as a form of energy transformation and storage can be established in an economically viable way. MEMS sensors can be manufactured using the methods of microsystems technology (Si technology, microelectronics), so that novel MEMS hydrogen sensors have high potentials in terms of miniaturisation and energy consumption and can be manufactured more cost-effectively.
Test wafer with pressure sensor; Credits: CiS Forschungsinstitut für Mikrosensorik GmbH