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Research Papers

Experimental Investigation on a Novel Electrolyte Configuration for Cylindrical Molten Carbonate Fuel Cells

[+] Author and Article Information
Federico Rossi

Andrea Nicolini1

 University of Perugia, Department of Industrial Engineering, via G. Duranti n. 67, 06125 Perugia, Italynicolini.unipg@ciriaf.it

1

Corresponding author.

J. Fuel Cell Sci. Technol 8(5), 051012 (Jun 20, 2011) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4003773 History: Received September 10, 2010; Revised January 29, 2011; Published June 20, 2011; Online June 20, 2011

An experimental investigation on a novel electrolyte configuration for molten carbonate fuel cells (MCFCs) is presented. A single cell facility was built. The cell is characterized by a cylindrical geometry in order to reduce the structural and thermodynamic problems which affect the lifetime of the traditional rectangular shape MCFCs. The main aim of this research is to evaluate the possibility of not installing the porous ceramic matrix in order to reduce the gas crossover problems of MCFCs and improve the cell lifetime. Thus, the new single cell was mainly constituted by the porous electrodes, the liquid electrolyte and structural disks as electrolytic support. Different solutions were studied as mechanical support for the electrolyte. Experimental tests on the proposed solutions were performed. Results suggested that the proposed adjustments are a promising solution for increasing the lifetime of cylindrical MCFCs and reducing their costs.

Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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References

Figures

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Figure 1

SEM analysis of a typical MCFC matrix

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Figure 2

The single cell reactor scheme

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Figure 3

A picture of the single cell reactor

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Figure 4

The single cell reactor internal assembling scheme

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Figure 5

A picture of the entire single cell facility

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Figure 6

A picture of the macor electrolytic support

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Figure 7

Cell voltage- current density (V-J) characteristic curve for different working temperatures (macor electrolytic support)

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Figure 8

Cell power-current density (W-J) characteristic curve for different working temperatures (macor electrolytic support)

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Figure 9

Picture of the bottom steel plate of the reactor after its disassembly

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Figure 10

A picture of the phlogopite electrolytic support where the position of the internal rectangular elements ((A) configuration is shown)

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Figure 11

Cell voltage-current density (V-J) characteristic curve for different working temperatures (phlogopite electrolytic support, (A) configuration)

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Figure 12

Cell power-current density (W-J) characteristic curve for different working temperatures (phlogopite electrolytic support, (A) configuration)

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Figure 13

Cell voltage-current density (V-J) characteristic curve for different working temperatures (phlogopite electrolytic support, (B) configuration

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Figure 14

Cell power-current density (W-J) characteristic curve for different working temperatures (phlogopite electrolytic support, (B) configuration)

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Figure 15

Comparison among the power-current density (W-J) characteristic curves of the tested configurations (580 °C and 600 °C working temperatures)

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Figure 16

Comparison among the power-current density (W-J) characteristic curves of the tested configurations (620 °C and 640 °C working temperatures)

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Figure 17

Cell power-current density (W-J) characteristic curve for 620 °C working temperature (phlogopite electrolytic support, (B) configuration, tests 1–6, see Table 2)

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Figure 18

Cell power-current density (W-J) characteristic curve for 620 °C working temperature (phlogopite electrolytic support, (B) configuration, tests 7–12, see Table 2)

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Figure 19

Cell power-current density (W-J) characteristic curve for 640 °C working temperature (phlogopite electrolytic support, (B) configuration, tests 1–6, see Table 2)

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Figure 20

Cell power-current density (W-J) characteristic curve for 640 °C working temperature (phlogopite electrolytic support, (B) configuration, tests 7–12, see Table 2)

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