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New manufacturing approaches for Hydrogen Electrolysers to provide Reliable AEM technology based solutions while achieving Quality, Circularity, Low LCOH, high Efficiency and Scalability

Project description

Innovative solutions for improved AEM hydrogen electrolyser stacks

Hydrogen and hydrogen electrolysers represent a promising solution for cleaner energy and fuels. However, many of these technologies are still at the development and validation stage, facing challenges such as process bottlenecks and lack of tools due to low production. The EU-funded HERAQCLES project aims to address these issues by developing an innovative anion exchange membrane (AEM) technology that uses a design-for-manufacturing architecture and newly developed components. This approach also seeks to overcome stack manufacturing process bottlenecks, improve cost efficiency and enhance overall performance. The project’s objectives include advancing manufacturing readiness from level 4 to 5, enhancing components to comply with a concept for automation at industrial scale, and validating the solution through three yearly tests with a focus on improving sustainability, recyclability and quality.


HERAQCLES stands for New Manufacturing Approaches for Hydrogen Electrolysers To Provide Reliable AEM Technology Based Solutions While Achieving Quality, Circularity, Low LCOH, High Efficiency And Scalability.
Project HERAQCLES delivers an operational 25kW electrolyser stack including balance-of-plant based on AEM technology to validate both our novel design-for-manufacturing architecture and innovative components developed for automated production processes.
AEM electrolysis offers a more attractive cost/performance ratio compared to state-of-art PEM electrolysis because these is no need to utilise precious group metals in stack components like catalysts, porous transport layers and bipolar plates for generating hydrogen at reasonably high current density.
Current stack manufacturing processes face bottlenecks limited by many separate components, manual assembly and lack of tooling due to low production numbers.
The project focusses on increasing Manufacturing Readiness Level from 4 to 5 by collectively advancing all components to comply with automated manufacturing processes at industrial scale: forming of metal plates, 3D-screen printing porous layers, pilot-scale synthesis of membrane polymers and catalyst. Validation occurs in three yearly loops using single cell, short stack and full 25kW stack configurations, where test results are benchmarked against commercially available options to highlight critical improvements of composition, functionality and recyclability.
The experienced consortium brings together a unique combination of know-hows acquired in previous projects (e.g. Anione) and manufacturing capabilities provided by strong representation from industrial partners (6 out of 8). If successful, the final qualified stack prototype can be scaled-up quickly.
Finally, a business plan is established comprising of a technology roadmap, an analysis of premium applications, an overview of product-market combinations and feasible market development plans.


Net EU contribution
€ 355 420,00
91074 Herzogenaurach

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Bayern Mittelfranken Erlangen-Höchstadt
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Total cost
€ 655 420,00

Participants (11)