UKM Wins Best Invention Award
By Saiful Bahri Kamaruddin
Pix Institute of Fuel Cell UKM
KUALA LUMPUR , Dec 17 2013 – The National University of Malaysia (UKM) won the Best and Most Creative award and a cash prize of Rs 3,000 at the inventors’ exhibition and competition known as PENCIPTA 2013 here recently .
The Systems Process Engineering team of the Fuel Cell Institute ( SELFUEL ) UKM invented a Hydrogen Fuel Cell Car which clinched the honour of the Best of the Best Invention of the Year award .
The team consisted of Dr . Edy Herianto Majlan , Prof. Dato’ Ir. Dr. Wan Ramli Wan Daud, Prof Dr . Jaafar Sahari, Rosemilia Rosli , Siti Afiqah Abdul Hamid and Dedi Rohendi .
Prof. Wan Ramli , who is also director of SELFUEL said the Hydrogen Fuel Cell vehicle is a golf cart driven by hydrogen exchange membrane ( PEMFC ) fuel cell which produced power of 3 kW for the vehicle using hydrogen energy .
According to Prof. Wan Ramli, cells are environmentally friendly and have high energy efficiency of up to 50 % , compared with 30 % for a typical car engine .
He said the cell can be made small and easily built , lighter than a typical car battery (25 % by weight of the battery) and has a high energy density.
A fuel cell is a device that converts the chemical energy from a fuel into electricity through a chemical reaction with oxygen or another oxidising agent. Hydrogen is the most common fuel, but hydrocarbons such as natural gas and alcohols like methanol are sometimes used.
Fuel cell car engines do not emit any polluting emissions or smoke .
On the whole , he added , this car is very efficient with reasonable maintenance costs .
SELFUEL is planning to build a prototype fuel cell saloon car in the near future.
SELFUEL was established in 2006 as a research institute in Malaysia to do research on fuel cells.
The institute began operation officially with the appointment of Prof Wan Ramli as the founding director by the Vice-Chancellor Prof Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr Sharifah Hapsah Syed Hasan Shahabudin in January 2007.