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Group Releases Fuel Cell Specs For Notebooks

Fuel cell technology promises to power mobile PCs for full working days, while instant refueling with cartridges could extend run time almost indefinitely.
MANHASSET, NY — The Mobile PC Extended Battery Life Working Group, an Intel initiative, has released its "Fuel Cell Guidelines for Mobile PCs" covering electrical, mechanical, control, thermal, environmental and regulatory aspects of fuel cells for mobile PCs.

"This document guides fuel cell developers on what it takes to design fuel cells for all-day computing for mobile PCs," said Kamal Shah, manager, Mobility Enabling Initiative, Mobile Platforms Group, Intel Corp. and chairman of the group, in a statement.

Fuel cell technology promises to power mobile PCs for full working days, while instant refueling with cartridges could extend run time almost indefinitely.

Fuel cells, by providing a steady supply of power generated from a fuel, need precise circuit management to accommodate the very uneven power consumed by notebooks. By contrast, today's batteries can easily handle bursts of computing, spinning up of disk drives, and other transient events.

A fuel cell system for a notebook would need a fuel pump, cooling, support electronics and a starter battery.

"These guidelines are an invaluable source of information for companies working to provide all-day, integrated power sources for notebook computer users," said Gregory Smith, marketing director of consumer electronics for Millennium Cell, a company developing hydrogen energy systems for portable electronics devices.

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