SOFC System Development in VTT

Rolf Rosenberg, Jari Kiviaho, Matias Halinen, Matti Noponen, Jaakko Saarinen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference abstract in proceedingsScientific


SOFC power unit system development worldwide is largely concentrated on small systems from 1 to 5 kW. As one exception to this the Wärtsilä Corporation fuel cell group, together with Haldor Topsoe Fuel Cells AS, is aiming at 1-5 MW units. The road map to the larger units includes smaller units from 50 kW to 250 kW as modules for the large plants. In order to support this work VTT is executing a national project on SOFC development and tries to involve European and international cooperation in the development work. In Europe the emphasise of publicly supported SOFC research is on materials and cells. However the Balance of Plant (BOP) is at least two thirds of the system cost. Therefore the system development will be crucial for the economical success of SOFC systems. Contrary to belief many of the components require materials research and completely new designs in order to enable the required cost and performance targets. This has been realized by the SECA program but less so in the European programmes. The Finnish national programme involves several components on both national and international level. The FINSOFC project is a national project partly funded by The National Technology Agency (Tekes), together with VTT and the industry. FINSOFC includes such tasks as system development including components like reformers for natural gas and low sulphur diesel, catalytic after burners, power electronics, automation system and heat exchangers and so on. It also include development of system control strategies based on a combination of dynamic system modelling in cooperation with Research Center Jülich (FZJ) and experimental work with a 5 kW system test facility. In addition to its own system development work Wärtsilä Corporation is involved in the development of modelling tools in the FINSOFC project. Other Finnish companies are involved in materials and component development. FINSOFC together with power companies is also looking at grid connection issues. VTT and some Finnish companies are also looking at fuel issues, including gasification of biomass and reforming of bio diesel and low sulphur diesel. The European cooperation, both bilateral and EU-projects SOFCnet and Real-SOFC are crucial in providing cells and stacks. Real-SOFC will provide the next generation of stacks which will support all the involved system developers. In the SOFCnet project an effort is made to jointly make recommendations for research and development of systems and BOP components. In additional the cooperation involves modelling and marketing related studies. The public international cooperation is mainly undertaken trough the IEA Advanced Fuel Cells implementation agreement, and involves mainly information change in the area of SOFC and systems. In the Annex on Stationary Applications an effort is made to jointly agree on specifications and requirements for BOP components.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 1st European Fuel Cell Technology and Applications Conference, EFC2005
Subtitle of host publicationBook of Abstracts
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
ISBN (Print)978-0-7918-4209-6
Publication statusPublished - 2005
MoE publication typeNot Eligible
Event1st European Fuel Cell Technology and Applications Conference - Rome, Italy
Duration: 14 Dec 200516 Dec 2005
Conference number: 1


Conference1st European Fuel Cell Technology and Applications Conference
Abbreviated titleEFC


  • SOFC


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