As part of this project, you are required to design a complete fuel cell system. Your system is a
semi-portable SOFC, which will be used in a mobile home. The system delivers 1 kW of power at
220 V (DC).
Note that designing a complete fuel cell system involves not only sizing the fuel cell but also
selecting the right balance of plant (BOP) components. The SOFC system design is an iterative
process. You will repeat the design until you reach the required design goals.
Also, note that your system will need to include:
• Fuel Cell Stack
• Hydrogen Supply System
• Air Supply System
• Heat Management System
• DC-DC Converter
Life cycle assessment is a methodology for systematically analyzing the effect of changes in the
implementation and use of energy-related technologies.
You wish to identify a stationary fuel cell system for a brand new 20-story hotel building in the
USA. Identify a system available for purchase; please be mindful of possible pollution-related
taxation, you will also do the following:
(a) Investigate the air pollution emissions associated with this unit. Report these air pollution
emissions in units of grams of species emitted per kWh of electrical power output.
(b) Compare these emission factors with those from coal plants and natural gas combustion
combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT). Comment on the significance of this comparison.
(c) Translate the fuel cell, coal plant, and CCGT emissions into ambient air pollutants.
(d) Analyze the human health-related impacts and financial costs of the ambient pollutants
from the fuel cell and coal plants.
(e) Calculate the change in health costs due to air pollution from switching from coal and
CCGT plants to fuel cell systems.
(f) Estimate the capital costs and the operation and maintenance (O&M) costs of the fuel cell
system and compare it with the CCGT plants. Analyze the system over 20 years and
compute the payback period.
Note: you may carry out most of the calculations using the file (fcpower-model-solid-oxide-fuelcell-version2-0.xls) included under the files directory together with its manual.
Electrolyzers are electrochemical reactors that can use electricity to “split” water into oxygen and
hydrogen (H2), a storable chemical fuel that could serve as the primary energy carrier in a clean
energy future. Industrial-scale water electrolysis is generally not economical at current electricity
prices, but this paradigm will change in a renewable energy future when electricity prices are very
low or free, for a small fraction of the day when there is excess electricity produced by solar or
wind. In this scenario, the economics of water electrolysis will be dominated by the capital costs
of the electrolyzers, which must be significantly reduced from current values. Toward this end,
membraneless electrolyzers have challenges and opportunities. For one they could yield reduced
costs and be integrated into buildings together with smart window technologies (e.g. photovoltaic
windows). If these devices can be successfully optimized and scaled up, they could become a
disruptive technology for producing low-cost H2.
In this project, you will either (select one of the two)
1) Carry out a techno-economic analysis of the feasibility of this technology [2] for use in
2) Develop a model to optimize these devices [3].
[1] D.V. Esposito. Membraneless Electrolyzers for Low-Cost Hydrogen Production in a
Renewable Energy Future. Joule, 1, 4, P651 (2017)
[ ] M. Temiz and N. Javani. Design and Analysis of a Combined Floating Photovoltaic System for
Electricity and Hydrogen Production. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, in press (2019).
[3 ] W.A. Braff, C.R. Buie, and M.Z. Bazant. Boundary Layer Analysis of Membraneless
Electrochemical Cells. Journal of the Electrochemical Society, 160, 11, A2056-A2063 (2013)

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