Efficient use of resources in energy converting applications
EURECA is developing the next generation of micro combined Heat-and-Power (µ-CHP) systems based on advanced PEM stack technology to overcome the disadvantages of complex gas purification, gas humidification and low temperature gradients for heat exchangers with operating temperatures of 90 to 120°C. The main outcome is a less complicated, highly efficient, and therefore a robust µ-CHP system with reduced cost, meaning that the consortium is well balanced along the supply chain.
Achievements to date
A public website has been designed and is available at: www.project-eureca.com. An internal website has been included and serves as an exchange server for documents. First technical meetings of the GA and in WP 2, 3, 4 have taken place to review the project’s progress and define test protocols.
We will simplify the design and manufacturing of cells and stacks and therefore we will search for new architectures respectively and design the specific application. Also, we will improve the tolerance to contamination and increase the performance power density efficiency reliability. In the end, we will have a system with higher robustness to cycling. We support the system engineering with a design to cost approach.
EURECA develops the next generation of μ‐CHP systems based on advanced PEM stack technology. The idea is to overcome the disadvantages of complex gas purification, gas humidification and the low temperature gradient for the heat exchangers in a heating system. EURECA will develop a new stack generation based on PEM technology with operating temperatures of 90 to 120°C. This results in a less complicated and therefore more robust μ‐CHP system with reduced cost. The development of a new stack generation includes various parallel working tasks. Inside the EURECA project we will optimize materials to operate in that temperature range – including membrane and bipolar plate materials. Also, the catalyst will be improved with a lower platinum loading – design target < 0.2 g/kW. The stack design and the flow field of the bipolar plates will be optimized for the operating conditions. All development steps will be supported by modelling. As the final step, the developed stack will be integrated in an adapted μ‐CHP system to achieve proof‐of-concept in the target application with validation of the design targets. The μ‐CHP system – including the reformer – is expected to operate at an electrical efficiency of above 40 %. Lifetime tests with defined test procedures on single cells and short stacks will indicate a stack lifetime of approx. 12.000 h. In all development processes the partners have agreed to a design‐to‐cost approach. A cost assessment will indicate the cost savings by the less complicated system. The consortium is well balanced along the supply chain. Component suppliers and system designer are backed by research institutions.