pH-sensitive thermally regenerative cell (pH-TRC) with circulating hydrogen for long discharging time and high-power output

Chun Cheng, Sijia Wang, Yifan Wu, Tong Liu, Shien Ping Feng, Meng Ni

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Thermally Regenerative Cell (TRC) is a recently proposed promising approach for converting low-grade waste heat into electricity, but the power density and discharging time are limited by the loss of electrode active material and unoptimized cell design. By replacing the early consumable electrode with H2/H+ catalytic electrode and rationally improving the cell design, here we report an advanced pH-sensitive thermally regenerative cell (pH-TRC) with circulating hydrogen to achieve both long discharging time and high-power output. Between the H2/H+ catalytic electrodes we have flowing anolyte and catholyte with different pH values, which can be neutralized through discharging reactions and then thermally regenerated to reset the initial state. With this new design, a favorable peak power density of 5.296 W m−2 is obtained. More importantly, an incredibly long discharging time over 40 h enables the powering of a smart phone in comparison to only hundreds-of-seconds discharging time of previous TRC.

Original languageEnglish
Article number137772
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2022


  • Circulating hydrogen
  • Low-grade heat harvesting
  • pH-sensitive thermally regenerative cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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