Fabrication of T-SOFC via Freeze Cast Methods for Space and Portable Applications

Period of Performance: 06/16/2015 - 06/15/2017

$750K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Yanhai Power LLC
402 Hopestone Crossing
Irmo, SC 29063
Firm POC
Principal Investigator

Abstract

As NASA space missions become longer in duration the need for high efficiency power generator sets that can operate on NASA logistical fuel become critical. Historically NASA has used fuel cells as part of the energy solution. Space bound energy and power systems require rapid start and stop cycle times as well as high power densities. The high operational efficiency, coupled with the use of logistical fuel options make fuel cells vital to the extended future missions of NASA. Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFCs) have been demonstrated on a variety of gaseous and liquid hydrocarbon fuels. Our team has developed tubular SOFC systems capable of cycling from room temperature to 700C and full power in less than 15 minutes. The system has been cycled more than 250 times and demonstrated life times greater than 2000hrs. Coupling the freeze cast microstructure with the rapid cycling and portability of the tubular systems will lead to a high power density robust SOFC system operating on methane and oxygen capable of space missions.