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PROSOFC Report Summary

Project ID: 325278
Funded under: FP7-JTI
Country: Austria

Final Report Summary - PROSOFC (Production and Reliability Oriented SOFC Cell and Stack Design)

On 1st of May 2013, the research project PROSOFC started under the coordination of AVL List GmbH (Austria). It was the goal of PROSOFC to significantly improve the stack robustness and cost with the focus on production and operation. The first period was based on the Topsoe stack design. Due to the termination of Topsoe’s SOFC activities by the end of August 2014, SOLIDpower took over the role of the industrial stack supplier to continue the project by keeping the main targets.

PROSOFC directly contributes to the objectives of Call SP1-JTI-FCH.2012.3.2 “Improved cell and stack design and manufacturability for application specific requirements”.

▪ Improved electrical efficiency over the state of the art
▪ Better robustness, including longer lifetime
o Operation in simulated real-life environment > 4,000 hours
o Demonstration of the potential to achieve longer run times required to meet market entry requirements
▪ Considerable cost reductions consistent with market acceptance requirements for industrial or residential or other relevant applications
▪ Improved manufacturing methods in terms of yield and cost, reducing stack scrap rate to 10% by 2014 and the objective to reduce it to less than 5% by 2017
▪ Higher power density

In particular the PROSOFC project aims at improving the robustness, manufacturability, efficiency and cost of SOLIDpowers state-of-the-art SOFC stacks so as to reach market entry requirements. The key issues are the mechanical robustness of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), and the delicate interplay between cell properties, stack design, and operating conditions of the SOFC stack.

The novelty of the project lies in combining state of the art methodologies for cost-optimal reliabilitybased design (COPRD) with actual production optimization. To achieve the COPRD beyond state of the art multi-physical modeling concepts had to be developed and validated for significantly improved understanding of the production and operation of SOFC stacks. The models should allow a probabilistic approach to consider statistical variations in production, material and operating parameters for the optimization phase. The key to this understanding are validating experiments and models on multiple levels of the SOFC system and introduction of extensive test programs specified by the COPRD methodology. In this context, an accelerated test program was developed which specifically covers the stresses coming from the operation of a stationary system (heat-up, cool-down, hot-standby, load changes, etc.).

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