Processing of SOFC Anodes for Enhanced Intermediate Temperature Catalytic Activity at High Fuel Utilization Email Page
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Performer:  Trustees of Boston University Location:  Boston, Massachusetts
Project Duration:  10/01/2015 – 07/31/2020 Award Number:  FE0026096
Technology Area:  Solid Oxide Fuel Cells Total Award Value:  $1,000,000
Key Technology:  Cell Technology DOE Share:  $800,000
Performer Share:  $200,000

Plot of power density versus current density,<br/>showing the reduction of power density with<br/>increasing fuel utilization. Since commercial fuel<br/>cells run at high fuel utilization, it is important to<br/>mitigate such effects.
Plot of power density versus current density,
showing the reduction of power density with
increasing fuel utilization. Since commercial fuel
cells run at high fuel utilization, it is important to
mitigate such effects.

Project Description

Boston University (BU) will design solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) anodes that are functional at intermediate temperatures and maintain high power densities at high fuel utilization, which is accompanied by high water vapor concentrations at the anode. BU will demonstrate the ability to deposit fine nano-sized connected nickel (Ni) catalyst particles by infiltration into porous yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) and YSZ/Ni scaffolds to increase triple phase boundary length. Project personnel will optimize the anode microstructure based on quantitative microstructural characterization, polarization measurements, and modeling. The result will be the production of SOFC cells that demonstrate a substantial improvement in cell performance at intermediate temperatures and high fuel utilization rates compared to cells with conventionally processed anodes. The challenge is to deposit them in a fine, but connected microstructure, with substantial neck formation during sintering without significant coarsening. This project leverages previous related work under DOE contracts NT0004104 and FE0009656.

Project Benefits

BU's research will produce SOFCs with optimized anode microstructures resulting in demonstrated improved power densities at intermediate temperatures and high utilization rates (up to 85% water vapor) and an improvement in power density compared to a conventionally processed anode.

Presentations, Papers, and Publications

Contact Information

Federal Project Manager Steven Markovich:
Technology Manager Shailesh Vora:
Principal Investigator Soumendra Basu: