AA Fuel Cell





Introduction: AA Fuel Cell

Big thanks to NachoMahma for the wire, without him it wouldn't be possible for this experiment.

This was an experiment to make a AA fuel cell with house hold parts (plus platinum Wire), but it failed. In a performence test it produced an unstead 2 - 1.5 volts for 10 seconds, yet it couldn't even light up a red LED. With that said here's the AA hydrogen fuel cell!

Step 1: Materials

2 cheap AA (not shown)


nut and bolt

platinum wire

a tube that's the size of an AA, I made one from a 5cc syringe


a bit of aluminum


Step 2: Battery Disection

For safty, use gloves for this, and I don't have pictures because I didn't want to get black powder all over my camera.

Take apart both AA's to get the negative caps. The cheaper the battery, the easier it is.

You could only take apart 1 AA and use positive and negative caps, but I found soldering the negative cap was easier.

Step 3: Mark the Tube

Mark the tube with a sharpie either 1/3 the way in or 2/3 the way in, it doesn't matter, it's all relative.

Step 4: The Design

Here's the design of what this is going to look like in the end.

Step 5: Wind Coils

wind coils of platinum around the bolt so you can screw off the bolt. Make the coils a tiny bit shorter than each side.

Step 6: Solder

turn up you soldering iron to maybe around 650F

Make a giant blob of solder on the terminal, insert the coil and wait about 10 seconds for the solder to solidify. Repeat for the shorter coil.

Step 7: Insert the Alluminum Barrier

insert the aluminum barrier on the mark you marked earlier. make it water tight with super glue around the perimeter. this is easier if you put it on your not and bolt and adjust the nut to make it level.

Step 8: Fill With Water

fill one cavity with water (leave some gap, I'd say about 3/4 to 7/8 full), super glue the coil and terminal on, then do the same on the othe rside.

Step 9: To Charge

to charge it hook up the larger cavity to the - and the smaller cavity to the +. Use at least 9 volts. This will create hydrogen and oxygen bubbles, which the platinum can convert back into electricity.



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    Can I use any other metal wire instead of Platinum?
    If so, which metal?

    I'm pretty sure you could do something with vanadium instead of platinum.

    This failed because you used an aluminum barrier. When you 'charged' it, you generated hydrogen and oxygen on the platinum, but the aluminum also underwent a reaction because you must have ion flow to get a circuit. So one side of the aluminum generated oxygen, which did nothing to the aluminum, and the other generated hydrogen which partially destroys the oxide coating. This basically turns your fuel cell into a low grade electrolytic capacitor. The minute you removed the charging potential there is a reverse potential generated by the aluminum that reforms the oxide layer thereby preventing any serious flow of ions in your device. This lack of ion flow stymies your electric current, but will give you a measurable action potential until the hydrogen and oxygen are resorbed by the water.

    where did you find platinum wire? the stuff's like 1600 bucks an ounce

    plutonium? isn't that stuff radioactive?

    PLATINUM! is worth more than gold. it is a light silvery-white metal and it is harder than gold but softer than copper. it is also used as a catalyst for fuel cells. plutonium, on the other hand, is very heavy, highly radioactive, and very dangerous. jeez, get your elements straight.

    PLATINUM PLUTONIUM OMG THEYRE THE SAME Really its like a one letter diffirence Geez...

    why dont you wear a plutonium brancelet instead of a platinum branclet?

    Oh sure where can i get a plutonium bracelet? Ill keep it with me in my grave so that when anyone comes by to steal my 5 billion dollars under me will die