Parametric Analysis of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Using Lattice Boltzmann Method

The present paper deals with a numerical simulation of temperature field inside a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) components. The temperature distribution is investigated using a co-flow planar SOFC comprising the air and fuel channel and two-ceramic electrodes, anode and cathode, separated by a dense ceramic electrolyte. The Lattice Boltzmann method (LBM) is used for the numerical simulation of the physical problem. The effects of inlet temperature, anode thermal conductivity and current density on temperature distribution are discussed. It was found that temperature distribution is very sensitive to the inlet temperature and the current density.

High Temperature Oxidation of Cr-Steel Interconnects in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) is a promising solution for the energy resources leakage. Ferritic stainless steel becomes a suitable candidate for the SOFCs interconnects due to the recent advancements. Different steel alloys were designed to satisfy the needed characteristics in SOFCs interconnect as conductivity, thermal expansion and corrosion resistance. Refractory elements were used as alloying elements to satisfy the needed properties. The oxidation behaviour of the developed alloys was studied where the samples were heated for long time period at the maximum operating temperature to simulate the real working conditions. The formed scale and oxidized surface were investigated by SEM. Microstructure examination was carried out for some selected steel grades. The effect of alloying elements on the behaviour of the proposed interconnects material and the performance during the working conditions of the cells are explored and discussed. Refractory metals alloying of chromium steel seems to satisfy the needed characteristics in metallic interconnects.

Exergetic Optimization on Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Systems

Biogas can be currently considered as an alternative option for electricity production, mainly due to its high energy content (hydrocarbon-rich source), its renewable status and its relatively low utilization cost. Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) stacks convert fuel’s chemical energy to electricity with high efficiencies and reveal significant advantages on fuel flexibility combined with lower emissions rate, especially when utilize biogas. Electricity production by biogas constitutes a composite problem which incorporates an extensive parametric analysis on numerous dynamic variables. The main scope of the presented study is to propose a detailed thermodynamic model on the optimization of SOFC-based power plants’ operation based on fundamental thermodynamics, energy and exergy balances. This model named THERMAS (THERmodynamic MAthematical Simulation model) incorporates each individual process, during electricity production, mathematically simulated for different case studies that represent real life operational conditions. Also, THERMAS offers the opportunity to choose a great variety of different values for each operational parameter individually, thus allowing for studies within unexplored and experimentally impossible operational ranges. Finally, THERMAS innovatively incorporates a specific criterion concluded by the extensive energy analysis to identify the most optimal scenario per simulated system in exergy terms. Therefore, several dynamical parameters as well as several biogas mixture compositions have been taken into account, to cover all the possible incidents. Towards the optimization process in terms of an innovative OPF (OPtimization Factor), presented here, this research study reveals that systems supplied by low methane fuels can be comparable to these supplied by pure methane. To conclude, such an innovative simulation model indicates a perspective on the optimal design of a SOFC stack based system, in the direction of the commercialization of systems utilizing biogas.

Irreversibility and Electrochemical Modeling of GT-SOFC Hybrid System and Parametric Analysis on Performance of Fuel Cell

Since the heart of the hybrid system is the fuel cell and it has vital impact on efficiency and performance of cycle, in this study, the major modeling of electrochemical reaction within the fuel cell is analyzed. Also, solid oxide fuel cell is integrated with the gas turbine and thermodynamic analysis on different elements of hybrid system is applied. Next, in predefined operational points of hybrid cycle, the simulation results are obtained. Then, different source of irreversibility in fuel cell is modeled and influence of different major parameters on different irreversibility is computed and applied. Then, the effect of important parameters such as thickness and surface of electrolyte fuel cell are simulated in fuel cell and its dependency to these parameters is explained. At the end of the paper, different impact of parameters on fuel cell with a gas turbine and current density and voltage of fuel cell are simulated.

Synthesizing CuFe2O4 Spinel Powders by a Combustion-Like Process for Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Interconnect Coatings

The synthesis of CuFe2O4 spinel powders by an optimized combustion-like process followed by calcination is described herein. The samples were characterized using X-ray diffraction (XRD), differential thermal analysis (TG/DTA), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), dilatometry and 4-probe DC methods. Different glycine to nitrate (G/N) ratios of 1 (fuel-deficient), 1.48 (stoichiometric) and 2 (fuel-rich) were employed. Calcining the asprepared powders at 800 and 1000°C for 5 hours showed that the G/N ratio of 2 results in the formation of the desired copper spinel single phase at both calcination temperatures. For G/N=1, formation of CuFe2O4 takes place in three steps. First, iron and copper nitrates decompose to iron oxide and pure copper. Then, copper transforms to copper oxide and finally, copper and iron oxides react with each other to form a copper ferrite spinel phase. The electrical conductivity and the coefficient of thermal expansion of the sintered pelletized samples were 2 (800°C) and 11×10-6 °C-1 (25-800°C), respectively.

Radiation Heat Transfer in Planar SOFC Components: Application of the Lattice Boltzmann Method

Thermal radiation plays a very important role in the heat transfer combination through the various components of the SOFC fuel cell operating at high temperatures. Lattice Boltzmann method is used for treating conduction-radiation heat transfer in the electrolyte. The thermal radiation heat transfer is coupled to the overall energy conservation equations through the divergence of the local radiative flux. The equation of energy in one dimension is numerically resolved by using the Lattice Boltzmann method. A computing program (FORTRAN) is developed locally for this purpose in order to obtain fields of temperature in every element of the cell. The parameters investigated are: functioning temperature, cell voltages and electrolyte thickness. The results show that the radiation effect increases with increasing the electrolyte thickness, also increases with increasing the functioning temperature and decreases with the increase of the voltage of the cell.

Radiation Heat Transfer Effect in Solid Oxide Fuel Cell: Application of the Lattice Boltzmann Method

The radiation effect within the solid anode, electrolyte, and cathode SOFC layers problem has been investigated in this paper. Energy equation is solved by the Lattice Boltzmann method (LBM). The Rosseland method is used to model the radiative transfer in the electrodes. The Schuster-Schwarzschild method is used to model the radiative transfer in the electrolyte. Without radiative effect, the found results are in good agreement with those published. The obtained results show that the radiative effect can be neglected.

Manufacture of Electroless Nickel/YSZ Composite Coatings

The paper discusses optimising work on a method of processing ceramic / metal composite coatings for various applications and is based on preliminary work on processing anodes for solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). The composite coating is manufactured by the electroless co-deposition of nickel and yttria stabilised zirconia (YSZ) simultaneously on to a ceramic substrate. The effect on coating characteristics of substrate surface treatments and electroless nickel bath parameters such as pH and agitation methods are also investigated. Characterisation of the resulting deposit by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy dispersive X-ray analysis (EDXA) is also discussed.

Evaluation on the Viability of Combined Heat and Power with Different Distributed Generation Technologies for Various Bindings in Japan

This paper has examined the energy consumption characteristics in six different buildings including apartments, offices, commercial buildings, hospitals, hotels and educational facilities. Then 5-hectare (50000m2) development site for respective building-s type has been assumed as case study to evaluate the introduction effect of Combined Heat and Power (CHP). All kinds of CHP systems with different distributed generation technologies including Gas Turbine (GT), Gas Engine (GE), Diesel Engine (DE), Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) and Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell (PEFC), have been simulated by using HEATMAP, CHP system analysis software. And their primary energy utilization efficiency, energy saving ratio and CO2 reduction ratio have evaluated and compared respectively. The results can be summarized as follows: Various buildings have their special heat to power ratio characteristics. Matching the heat to power ratio demanded from an individual building with that supplied from a CHP system is very important. It is necessary to select a reasonable distributed generation technologies according to the load characteristics of various buildings. Distributed generation technologies with high energy generating efficiency and low heat to power ratio, like SOFC and PEFC is more reasonable selection for Building Combined Heat and Power (BCHP). CHP system is an attractive option for hotels, hospitals and apartments in Japan. The users can achieve high energy saving and environmental benefit by introducing a CHP systems. In others buildings, especially like commercial buildings and offices, the introduction of CHP system is unreasonable.

Study of the Oxidation Resistance of Coated AISI 441 Ferritic Stainless Steel for SOFCs

Protective coatings that resist oxide scale growth and decrease chromium evaporation are necessary to make stainless steel interconnect materials for long-term durable operation of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). In this study a layer of cobalt was electroplated on the surface of AISI 441 ferritic stainless steel which is used in solid oxide fuel cells for interconnect applications. The oxidation behavior of coated substrates was studied as a function of time at operating conditions of SOFCs. Cyclic oxidation has been also tested at 800ºC for 100 cycles. Cobalt coating during isothermal oxidation caused to the oxide growth resistance by limiting the outward diffusion of Cr cation and the inward diffusion of oxygen anion. Results of cyclic oxidation exhibited that coated substrates demonstrate an excellent resistance against the spallation and cracking.

Optimization of Three-dimensional Electrical Performance in a Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Stack by a Neural Network

By the application of an improved back-propagation neural network (BPNN), a model of current densities for a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) with 10 layers is established in this study. To build the learning data of BPNN, Taguchi orthogonal array is applied to arrange the conditions of operating parameters, which totally 7 factors act as the inputs of BPNN. Also, the average current densities achieved by numerical method acts as the outputs of BPNN. Comparing with the direct solution, the learning errors for all learning data are smaller than 0.117%, and the predicting errors for 27 forecasting cases are less than 0.231%. The results show that the presented model effectively builds a mathematical algorithm to predict performance of a SOFC stack immediately in real time. Also, the calculating algorithms are applied to proceed with the optimization of the average current density for a SOFC stack. The operating performance window of a SOFC stack is found to be between 41137.11 and 53907.89. Furthermore, an inverse predicting model of operating parameters of a SOFC stack is developed here by the calculating algorithms of the improved BPNN, which is proved to effectively predict operating parameters to achieve a desired performance output of a SOFC stack.

A Brief Review on Recent Trends in Alternative Sources of Energy

Alternative energy is any energy source that is an alternative to fossil fuel. These alternatives are intended to address concerns about such fossil fuels. Today, because of the variety of energy choices and differing goals of their advocates, defining some energy types as "alternative" is highly controversial. Most of the recent and existing alternative sources of energy are discussed below

Energy Analysis of Pressurized Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Combined Power Turbine

Solid oxide fuel cells have been considered in the last years as one of the most promising technologies for very highefficiency electric energy generation from hydrogen or other hydrocarbons, both with simple fuel cell plants and with integrated gas turbine-fuel cell systems. In the present study, a detailed thermodynamic analysis has been carried out. Mass and exergy balances are performed not only for the whole plant but also for each component in order to evaluate the thermal efficiency of combined cycle. Moreover, different sources of irreversibilities within the SOFC stack have been discussed and a parametric study conducted to evaluate the effect of temperature as well as pressure on SOFC irreversibilities and its performance. In this investigation methane and hydrogen have been used for fueling the SOFC stack and combustion chamber.

Nonlinear Model Predictive Control for Solid Oxide Fuel Cell System Based On Wiener Model

In this paper, we consider Wiener nonlinear model for solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC). The Wiener model of the SOFC consists of a linear dynamic block and a static output non-linearity followed by the block, in which linear part is approximated by state-space model and the nonlinear part is identified by a polynomial form. To control the SOFC system, we have to consider various view points such as operating conditions, another constraint conditions, change of load current and so on. A change of load current is the significant one of these for good performance of the SOFC system. In order to keep the constant stack terminal voltage by changing load current, the nonlinear model predictive control (MPC) is proposed in this paper. After primary control method is designed to guarantee the fuel utilization as a proper constant, a nonlinear model predictive control based on the Wiener model is developed to control the stack terminal voltage of the SOFC system. Simulation results verify the possibility of the proposed Wiener model and MPC method to control of SOFC system.

GRNN Application in Power Systems Simulation for Integrated SOFC Plant Dynamic Model

In this paper, the application of GRNN in modeling of SOFC fuel cells were studied. The parameters are of interested as voltage and power value and the current changes are investigated. In addition, the comparison between GRNN neural network application and conventional method was made. The error value showed the superlative results.