Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) will experimentally characterize SOFC cell and stack materials and interfaces, provide data on thermal and mechanical properties under typical operating conditions, and establish the experimental techniques required to collect this data. This information is then used to produce high-fidelity models to assess and predict SOFC cell and stack behavior.
ORNL will also identify the mechanisms that are responsible for the failure of SOFC components, in particular multilayer anode/electrolyte/cathode assemblies which constitute the building blocks of these systems. They will then develop and implement a probabilistic design methodology for predicting the life and reliability of SOFCs. In addition, ORNL will characterize the thermo-mechanical properties of these materials for incorporation into state-of-the-art computer-based modeling tools. ORNL will also develop and evaluate engineered glass-based composite seals characterizing self-healing SOFC seal designs (glass seals that flow at high temperatures to heal cracks formed during thermal cycling) incorporating crystallization-resistant glasses.
This project focuses on identifying and characterizing the mechanisms responsible for the failure of materials, components, and stacks and developing engineered self-healing seal systems. Improved cell/stack life and performance will reduce operating cost and increase efficiency, resulting in reduction in the cost of electricity and reduction of CO2 emissions from the entire platform. Specifically, the project will conduct lab-scale tests, develop a high fidelity model to assess and predict behavior, performance, life, and reliability and develop and evaluate self-healing seal designs.