Metal-Supported SOFC for Vehicles

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Berkeley, California
Project Term:
09/01/2017 - 08/31/2018

Technology Description:

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) will develop a high power density, rapid-start, metal-supported solid oxide fuel cell (MS-SOFC), as part of a fuel cell hybrid vehicle system that would use liquid bio-ethanol fuel. In this concept, the SOFC would accept hydrogen fuel derived from on-board processing of the bio-ethanol and air, producing electricity to charge an on-board battery and operate the motor. The project aims to develop and demonstrate cell-level MS-SOFC technology providing unprecedented high power density and rapid start capability initially using hydrogen and simulated processed ethanol fuels. The majority of the project will focus on the optimization and development of scalable cells that meet stringent power density and start-up time metrics. High-performance catalysts and state-of-the-art high-oxide-conductivity electrolyte materials will be adapted to the MS-SOFC architecture and processing requirements. The cell will be optimized for power density by making the electrolyte and support layers as thin as possible, and the porous electrode structures will be optimized for catalytic activity, gas transport, and conductivity. If successful, the MS-SOFC will be used in a fuel cell stack to achieve low startup time (less than 3 minutes), thousands of operating cycles, and excellent anode oxidation tolerance thus solving issues that have prevented conventional SOFCs from being used effectively in vehicles.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Grigorii Soloveichik
Project Contact:
Dr. Michael Tucker
Press and General Inquiries Email:
Project Contact Email:


Nissan Technical Center North America

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