Hydrogen Production Performance of a 10-Cell Planar Solid-Oxide Electrolysis Stack

[+] Author and Article Information
J. E. O’Brien

 Idaho National Laboratory Idaho Falls, ID 83415jzo@inel.gov

C. M. Stoots, J. S. Herring

 Idaho National Laboratory Idaho Falls, ID 83415

J. Hartvigsen

 Ceramatec, Inc. 2425 S 900 W, Salt Lake City, UT 84037

J. Fuel Cell Sci. Technol 3(2), 213-219 (Oct 19, 2005) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2179435 History: Received July 19, 2005; Revised October 19, 2005

An experimental study is under way to assess the performance of solid-oxide cells operating in the steam electrolysis mode for hydrogen production over a temperature range of 800900°C. Results presented in this paper were obtained from a ten-cell planar electrolysis stack, with an active area of 64cm2 per cell. The electrolysis cells are electrolyte supported, with scandia-stabilized zirconia electrolytes (140μm thick), nickel-cermet steam/hydrogen electrodes, and manganite air-side electrodes. The metallic interconnect plates are fabricated from ferritic stainless steel. The experiments were performed over a range of steam inlet mole fractions (0.1–0.6), gas flow rates (10004000sccm), and current densities (00.38Acm2). Steam consumption rates associated with electrolysis were measured directly using inlet and outlet dewpoint instrumentation. Cell operating potentials and cell current were varied using a programmable power supply. Hydrogen production rates up to 100Nlh were demonstrated. Values of area-specific resistance and stack internal temperatures are presented as a function of current density. Stack performance is shown to be dependent on inlet steam flow rate.

Copyright © 2006 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Schematic of experimental apparatus for electrolysis stack testing

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Figure 2

High-temperature electrolysis hardware

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Figure 3

Ten-cell electrolysis stack

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Figure 4

Interconnect plate and single electrolysis cell

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Figure 5

Ten-cell stack mounted on fixture for testing at INL

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Figure 6

Stack open-cell potential during heatup

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Figure 7

Stack operating potential as a function of current density

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Figure 8

Per-cell area-specific resistance measured during DC potential sweeps

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Figure 9

Hydrogen production rates during DC potential sweep

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Figure 10

Electrolysis efficiencies as a function of operating voltage

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Figure 11

Stack temperatures measured during DC potential sweep



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