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DOE Selects Research Projects to Receive $2.8M for the Advancement of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Technology
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The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy (FE) has selected two projects to receive approximately $2.8 million in federal funding for cost-shared research and development projects. The projects will advance solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) technology and make progress toward enabling cost-competitive fossil-based power generation with near-zero emission. Fuel cells are a modular, efficient, and virtually pollution-free power generation technology.

The selected projects are advancing to Phase II after they were chosen from Phase I awards made under the funding opportunity announcement (FOA) DE-FOA-0001469 Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Core Technology and Innovative Concepts, which was issued in fiscal year 2015.

The Phase II projects were selected from recipients of the Core Technology topic area. Selected projects will culminate in testing technology advancements at the system level by participating SOFC manufacturer partners.

The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) will manage the selected projects. Project descriptions for the two selectees follow:

High Temperature Anode Recycle Blower for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells – Mohawk Innovative Technology (Albany, NY) will develop modular, low-cost, oil-free anode recycle blower (ARCB) technology to increase efficiency and support a reliable balance of plant subsystems. The approach will build on a prototype developed during Phase I and implement production optimizations and simplifications to reduce blower unit costs. The project will culminate in a 1,500-hour test of Mohawk’s ARCB in a 200-kilowatt SOFC prototype system.

DOE Funding: $1,499,553; Non-DOE Funding: $409,443; Total Value: $1,908,996

Minimizing Cr-Evaporation from Balance of Plant Components by Utilizing Cost-Effective Alumina-Forming Austenitic Steels – West Virginia University Research Corporation (Morgantown, WV) plans to systematically investigate long-term chrome (Cr)-evaporation of cost-effective alumina-forming austenitic (AFA) steels for balance-of-plant applications at both the 700–750ºC and 900ºC temperature regions. The project will quantitatively study SOFC cathode degradation as a function of Cr-species amount and operating conditions; comprehensively evaluate the key properties of AFA steels; and ultimately manufacture the related balance-of-plant components with AFA steels and test them at the SOFC system level.

DOE Funding: $1,309,410; Non-DOE Funding: $332,380; Total Value: $1,641,790

The Office of Fossil Energy funds research and development projects to reduce the risk and cost of advanced fossil energy technologies and further the sustainable use of the Nation’s fossil resources. To learn more about the programs within the Office of Fossil Energy, visit the Office of Fossil Energy website or sign up for FE news announcements.