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Petah Tikva, Israel – March 15, 2021 – GenCell Energy, GNCL (TASE), a leading Israel-based manufacturer of fuel cell energy solutions, today announces the successful completion of the design and synthesis of a catalyst that is not based on noble metals (palladium) and as such provides an economical substitute for these materials. The process by which the new catalyst accelerates chemical reactions that are necessary to generate clean electricity via electrochemical reaction inside the fuel cell is identical to the process using a catalyst based on noble metals. The new catalyst that the Company has developed is protected by patents in several locations around the world.The Company estimates that this new development will significantly reduce the manufacturing cost of each fuel cell stack, affording the company a significant competitive advantage over competitors that continue to manufacture catalysts with processes that require costly noble metals.
Rami Reshef, CEO of GenCell, commented, “The current advancement removing palladium from the catalyst follows a comprehensive cost reduction effort which began in 2014, when GenCell successfully removed the noble metal platinum from its nickel-based catalyst compound. I estimate that when hydrogen technology achieves its full momentum and becomes the leading fuel for trains, airplanes and other modes of heavy transportation, the demand for noble metals will rise dramatically, and in parallel their prices will soar; this development will afford a prominent competitive advantage to those products that are produced with no noble metals.”
Gennadi Finkelshtain, CTO, remarked, “In accordance with the Company’s milestones, our scientists have designed and synthesized a highly active noble metal-free catalyst to speed up the reactions occurring at the anode and cathode of the fuel cell. The noble metal-free full size fuel cell module is being successfully tested according to standard test procedures and performances are close to standards.”
Further explained Finkelshtain, “In the longer term, platinum shortage is likely to lead to production limitations for PEM fuel cell manufacturers, as all acid-based low temperature fuel cell technologies require platinum or platinum group metals in their construction. As alkaline fuel cells do not have this limitation, any restrictions imposed by platinum availability will not affect the Company’s pricing.”