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Performer: Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC)
Fifty-inch Inside Diameter Vessel for Pressurized<br/>SOFC Stack and System Demonstrations
Fifty-inch Inside Diameter Vessel for Pressurized
SOFC Stack and System Demonstrations
Website: US Department of the Navy, Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Division Newport
Award Number: FE0023536
Project Duration: 08/15/2015 – 12/31/2017
Total Award Value: $300,000
DOE Share: $300,000
Performer Share: $0
Technology Area: Solid Oxide Fuel Cells
Key Technology: Core Technology
Location: Newport, Rhode island

Project Description

The Navy is developing air-independent solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC)-based power sources for high efficiency and energy-dense operation in unmanned undersea vehicles (UUVs). Pressurized operation is being investigated as a means to improve efficiency. To this end, SOFC stacks being developed in the DOE’s Fossil Energy Fuel Cell Program will be acquired and evaluated under an Interagency Agreement by the Naval Underwater Warfare Center (NUWC) Division Newport in order to explore the effects of pure oxygen and elevated pressure operation on stack performance. NUWC will conduct testing of two SOFC stacks: a Delphi 10-cell Gen IV stack and a FuelCell Energy (FCE) 225-cell stack fabricated by Versa Power Systems (VPS). The Delphi stack is an in-house replacement from a previous DOE contract (FE0005652) and is ready for assembly into a test platform capable of pressurized and air-independent operation. There is a sub-award to FCE for the construction, testing, and delivery of an SOFC stack to NUWC including a report detailing how to design the stack’s surrounding enclosure.

Project Benefits

SOFCs operating on pure oxygen are of common interest to both NETL and NUWC. From NETL’s perspective, understanding SOFC performance under pure oxygen and elevated pressure will be useful for future coal gasification plants as oxygen-blown coal gasifiers could be designed to provide pure oxygen feed to the SOFC power plant block and possibly achieve higher operational efficiency. From NUWC’s perspective, the Navy is developing oxygen-fed SOFC based power sources for UUVs.

Contact Information

Federal Project Manager Joseph Stoffa:
Technology Manager Shailesh Vora:
Principal Investigator Louis Carreiro:


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