Hybrid Systems (Fuel Cell / mGT)

Nowadays, Hybrid FuelCell-microturbine plants represent the best option for both efficient exploitation (over 70% electrical efficiency) of fossil energy resources and for zero-emission cogenerative plants. The TPG entered this challenging field several years ago and can now rely on robust accurate simulation tools for performance prediction and optimisation. Its research aims to develop detailed models of all the necessary components (fuel cells, microturbines, large gas turbines, heat exchangers, high-temperature heat exchangers, auxiliaries, etc.) studying their on-design, off-design and transient behaviour. Thermoeconomic analysis is also applied to hybrid systems, in order to assess their competitiveness and to evaluate the best choice for distributed generation applications.

The TPG mainly concentrates on high-temperature fuel cell-based plants for stationary installations: Molten Carbonate Fuel Cell (SOFC) and Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (MCFC) hybrid systems. At present its attention is mainly focused on the analysis and simulation of the start-up, shut-down and transient behaviour of integrated high-temperature fuel cells and existing microturbines.

Pressurized SOFC/GT Hybrid System

TPG is currently involved in the development of the Rolls-Royce Fuel Cell Hybrid System, as explained in the following article. The target is to reach in the short-term a first working prototype of the system. TPG’s task is the simulation of such a cycle at on-design, off-design and transient conditions.