SOFC4City - SOFC-waste heat utilization for buildings and industry
Starting point / motivation
The fuel cell is a promising technology due to their high electrical efficiency of combined heat and power generation in the small power range up to 1 MWel.
Nowadays the activities on the market are focused on fuel cell heating appliances in which mainly PEFC and SOFC fuel cells with an electrical output power range from 1 – 5 kWel are available. Due to the high operating temperature of the SOFC fuel cell various fuels (natural gas, biogas, hydrogen, methanol, …..) can be basically used and fossil fuels can be substituted by renewable energy sources (second generation biofuels e.g. SNG, BtL).
The lifetime of fuel cells depends essentially on their heating rate in the startup and shut down cycle. High heating rates cause high thermal stress in the stacks and reduce the lifetime of the stack sealing, for that reason low heating rates are intended. Even the startup-procedure of small SOFC - systems can take a time of several days in order to avoid fast degradation.
This is the reason why SOFC – fuel cells react very slowly and they are not able to succeed fast energy requires. The solution of this problem is to use the fuel cell to cover the energy base load, for peak load coverage an additional system (for example energy storage system, additional burner) is required.
In the project SOFC4City the legal, market based and technological feasibility of the SOFC-heat usage at several temperature levels is scoured.
Contents and goals
Investigation of legal and market based conditions
CFD-simulation of the fuel cell heating system
Validation of the CFD-model
Probing of the SOFC-heat generation at different temperature levels and feasibility
Generation of basic knowledge for a following project
Analysis of legal and market based conditions
Use of numerical methods for model development and validated measurement
Validated simulation model of the SOFC fuel cell
Knowledge on the feasibility of SOFC-heat generation and usage at different temperature levels
Simulation model and measurement data for an additional project
Forschung Burgenland GmbH
Project or cooperation partners
Austrian Energy Agency (AEA)
Vaillant Group Austria GmbH