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research-article

Investigation of subsystems for combination into a SOFC based CCHP system

[+] Author and Article Information
Christof Weinländer

Institute of Thermal Engineering, Graz University of Technology, Inffeldgasse 25/B, A-8010 Graz, Austria
christof.weinlaender@tugraz.at

Johannes Albert

Institute of Thermal Engineering, Graz University of Technology, Inffeldgasse 25/B, A-8010 Graz, Austria
johannes.albert@tugraz.at

Christian Gaber

Institute of Thermal Engineering, Graz University of Technology, Inffeldgasse 25/B, A-8010 Graz, Austria
christian.gaber@tugraz.at

Martin Hauth

AVL, Hans-List-Platz 1, A-8020 Graz, Austria
martin.hauth@avl.com

Rene Rieberer

Institute of Thermal Engineering, Graz University of Technology, Inffeldgasse 25/B, A-8010 Graz, Austria
rene.rieberer@tugraz.at

Christoph Hochenauer

Institute of Thermal Engineering, Graz University of Technology, Inffeldgasse 25/B, A-8010 Graz, Austria
christoph.hochenauer@tugraz.at

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4041727 History: Received February 07, 2018; Revised September 30, 2018

Abstract

This paper presents the development of the subsystems for stationary biogas powered solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) based combined cooling, heat and power (CCHP). For certain applications, such as buildings, a heat driven operation mode leads to low operating hours per year for conventional CHP (combined heating and power) systems due to the low heat demand during the summer season. The objectives of this study are the evaluation of an adsorber, a steam reformer, a SOFC and an absorption chiller. Biogas, however, contains impurities in the form of hydrogen sulphide (H2S), hydrogen chloride (HCl) and siloxanes in different concentrations, which have a negative effect on the performance and durability of the SOFC and, in the case of H2S, also on the catalyst of the steam reformer. The paper describes different experimental sections: (i) The biogas treatment with its main focus on H2S separation and steam reforming, (ii) the setup and start-up of a 10 cell SOFC stack, and (iii) test runs with an absorption chiller (AC) using a mixture of NH3 (ammonia)/H2O (water). The components required for the engineering process of the subsystem's structure are described in detail and possible options for system design are explained. The evaluation is the basis to reveal the improvement potentials, which have to be considered in future product developments. This paper aims at comparing experimental data of the test rigs to develop an understanding of the requirements for a stable and continuous operation of a SOFC based CCHP operated by biogas.

Copyright (c) 2018 by ASME
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