ERC Program Overview

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The carbonate fuel cell promises highly efficient, cost-effective, environmentally superior power generation from pipeline natural gas, coal gas, biogas, and other gaseous and liquid fuels. ERC has been engaged in the development of this unique technology since the late 1970s, primarily focusing on the development of the Direct Fuel Cell (DFC) technology [1-6] pioneered by ERC. The DFC design incorporates the unique internal reforming feature which allows utilization of a hydrocarbon fuel directly in the fuel cell without requiring any external reforming reactor and associated heat exchange equipment. This approach provides upgrading of waste heat to chemical energy; thereby, it ... continued below

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15 pages

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Maru, H.; Farooque, M.; Carlson, G.; Patel, P.; Yuh, C.; Bentley, C. et al. August 1, 1996.

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Description

The carbonate fuel cell promises highly efficient, cost-effective, environmentally superior power generation from pipeline natural gas, coal gas, biogas, and other gaseous and liquid fuels. ERC has been engaged in the development of this unique technology since the late 1970s, primarily focusing on the development of the Direct Fuel Cell (DFC) technology [1-6] pioneered by ERC. The DFC design incorporates the unique internal reforming feature which allows utilization of a hydrocarbon fuel directly in the fuel cell without requiring any external reforming reactor and associated heat exchange equipment. This approach provides upgrading of waste heat to chemical energy; thereby, it contributing to higher overall efficiency for conversion of fuel energy to electricity with low levels of environmental emissions. Among the internal reforming options, ERC has selected the Indirect Internal Reforming (IIR) - Direct Internal Reforming (DIR) combination as its baseline design. ERC plans to offer commercial DFC power plants in various sizes, initially focusing on the MW-scale units. The plan is to offer standardized, packaged MW-scale DFC power plants operating on natural gas or other hydrocarbon-containing fuels for commercial sale by the end of the decade. These power plants, which can be shop-fabricated and sited near the user, are ideally suited for distributed generation, industrial cogeneration, and uninterrupted power for military bases. After gaining experience from the early MW-scale power plants, and with maturing of the technology, ERC expects to introduce larger power plants operating on natural gas and/or coal gas or other fuels in the beginning of the 21st century. ERC has completed a technology program for product design verification, a predecessor of the current program, where the power plant design as well as the technology development were carried out to support a full-size field demonstration. These activities culminated in 130 kW stack tests in ERC's subscale power plant, subscale stack tests in utility and industrial sites around the world, and a 1.8 MW power plant design for demonstration at a utility site. The design and procurement were completed and testing of this world's largest multi-megawatt advanced fuel cell demonstration plant has begun. The demonstration accomplishments are addressed in a separate paper at this conference. Built on these advances, ERC launched the present phase of the product development sponsored by government and private-sector cost-share, leading to technology and system optimization for cost reduction, commercial design development, and system demonstration.

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15 pages

Notes

OSTI as DE00016041

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  • Fuel Cells '96 Review Meeting, Morgantown, WV (US), 08/20/1996--08/21/1996; Other Information: Supercedes report DE97051822

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  • Other: DE97051822
  • Report No.: DOE/MC/31184--97/C0757
  • Report No.: CONF-
  • Grant Number: FC21-95MC31184
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 16041
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc618788

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • August 1, 1996

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

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  • March 10, 2016, 10:45 p.m.

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Maru, H.; Farooque, M.; Carlson, G.; Patel, P.; Yuh, C.; Bentley, C. et al. ERC Program Overview, article, August 1, 1996; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc618788/: accessed December 11, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.