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1 MW SOFC – hybrid fuel cell/micro-turbine system
The programme addressed the design, manufacture and operation of a natural gas fuelled pressurised hybrid SOFC/MTG power system. The specific issues to be addressed, that will contribute to advancing the technology for SOFC power systems in Europe, include:
- Designing the SOFC module for MW-class systems and pressurised SOFC operation
- Availability of a recuperated MTG that can satisfy the pressure, air inlet temperature and air flow characteristics required for direct integration with the pressurised SOFC module
- European supplier development to maximise the European content in the pressurised hybrid power systems
- Module cost reduction and system design simplification to reduces cost of the commercial prototype pressurised hybrid system
- Cost effective, skid mounted component packaging
- Satisfying European code and safety requirements
The main technical targets of the proposed programme are:
- Operation of the first MW-class SOFC power
system of European design and containing
significant European content
- System efficiency >55% (approaching 60%)
for the pressurised hybrid system
The project consortium consists of Electricité de France (EDF, France), Energie Baden-Württemberg (EnBW, Germany), Gaz de France (GDF, France), Siemens AG (SAG, Germany), Siemens Westinghouse Power Corporation (SWPC, USA) and Tiroler Wasserkraft AG (TIWAG, Austria). SWPC as advisor is reporting to the DoE, EnBW as project co-ordinator is reporting to the EC.
The main work packages are:
- Product Specifications
- SOFC Module
- System Engineering / Design / Assembly - Microturbine Generator / Thermal
- Site Preparation
- Installation, Shakedown and Acceptance - System Test
Expected impact and exploitation
Economic and technical interest in decentralised power production is steadily growing. Market research predicts an increasing share for decentralised technologies in power production. The high efficiency in combination with the very low emissions gives a competitive edge to fuel cell technology, especially SOFC technology, over comparable decentralised power stations in the power range up to several MW.
Therefore the use of highly efficient SOFC fuel cell technology in stationar y decentralised power production would have a saving in fossil fuels in electricity production, lower the emissions of noxious flue gases and also reduce specific greenhouse gas emissions.
For the widespread introduction and use of the decentralised and environmentally friendly power production the engagement of leading utilities is of paramount importance. The participation of utilities in this project would to a high degree validate the market and enable market penetration of the technology once commercialisation occurs. This would give a strong push to the propagation of new energy conversion technologies.
The change in energy technology is connected to new manufacturing technologies and new components, which will par tly replace known technologies. By early adaptation of the technology
The objective of the programme was to demonstrate the feasibility of a Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) power plant system of the MW class, based on existing tubular SOFC technology. A pressurised hybrid SOFC/MTG power system was to be tested using an available Micro-turbine Generator (MTG) adapted to the requirements of the SOFC module to achieve an electrical efficiency above 55%.
This programme was planned to be a joint project between USA (financed by the Dept. of Energy (DOE) and Siemens Westinghouse Power Corporation) (SWPC) and Europe (financed by the EC and the European partners).
A very important step towards the price target of 1000 to 1300 Euro/kW is the development and demonstration of a MW class system, proving the reliable operation of the integration of SOFC and MTG. To advance towards this goal a pressurised hybrid power system will be integrated with the adapted available MTG.
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