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Aug 07, 2017


NGK SPARK PLUG Expands the Use of Planar Solid-Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) Stacks from Household to Commercial and Industrial Applications

NGK SPARK PLUG CO. LTD. (Chairman, President and CEO: Shinichi Odo, Headquarters: Nagoya-shi, hereafter NGK SPARK PLUG) is pleased to announce that, we expand the use of its planar solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC) stacks under development to commercial and industrial applications that require high power in addition to conventional household applications. Newly developed planar SOFC for commercial and industrial applications have been supplied to Hitachi Zosen Corporation (Representative Director Chairman and President: Takashi Tanisho, Headquarters: Osaka-shi, hereafter Hitachi Zosen) and are used in its demonstration models.

We had been developing planar SOFC only for household use so far. However, we decided to expand the uses of SOFC from household to commercial and industrial uses in line with the strong demand for SOFC in the dispersed power source market.

From the viewpoint of economical rationality, SOFC for commercial and industrial uses are required to have high efficiency and long-term reliability, and we are working on the development and evaluation of SOFC for commercial and industrial uses to respond to the performance requirements from a fuel-cell system manufacturer that supplies cell stacks to us.

As part of the development and evaluation, we have started verification tests of SOFC for commercial and industrial uses as our SOFC are adopted by Hitachi Zosen. These SOFC for commercial and industrial uses are now installed in the Izumi Center of the Osaka Research Institute of Industrial Science and Technology (Director: Masami Nakamoto, Headquarters: Izumi-shi, Osaka, hereafter ORIST) with the cooperation of the Battery Strategy Research Center established by Osaka Prefecture.
Hitachi Zosen and ORIST are jointly planning to evaluate the safety and the reliability of these SOFC by performing a 4,000 or more hour continuous running test. They are also planning to study, test, and evaluate the constitutional elements of the SOFC with the aim of further upgrading. We will also continue to participate in their verification tests through the development of planar SOFC.

Note: This business project is mainly promoted by Hitachi Zosen to develop SOFC for commercial and industrial uses. The project “the Practical Technology Demonstration of Commercial Systems with Solid-Oxide Fuel Cells” is supported by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). It is also part of the H2Osaka Vision Promotion Conference, which is a joint project between Osaka Prefecture and Osaka City that aims to create advanced hydrogen projects.
We will continue to accumulate a track record of developing fuel cell stacks for commercial and industrial uses and expand fuel cell stack supply business in diversified power ranges and applications, aiming to gain a 50% share of planner SOFC for household use as well as for commercial and industrial uses in the domestic market. As a fuel cell stack manufacture, we will make efforts to contribute to an environmentally friendly society

Installation setting of generator at ORIST
Planar SOFC Stack

■Overview of joint demonstration project between Hitachi Zosen and ORIST

(1)Name of equipment Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) Generator for commercial and industrial use
(2)Specifications 1) Fuel City gas 13A *Low/Medium pressure supply compatible machine
2) Rated output power 20kW-class *AC Transmission line end efficiency from about 17.6 to18.5kW
3) Generating efficiency not less than 50% *at early operation
4) Heat recovery efficiency Rate not less than 40% Device *measurement at system outlet: from cold water 22 degrees Celsius to hot water 84 degrees Celsius, 0.21t/h
5) Dimensions W2.2m*L4.3m*H2.8m *excluding ventilation hood and exhaust pipe
(3)Stack Planar layer stack (Planar type SOFC) manufacturered by NGK SPARK PLUG CO., LTD.
(4)Features 1) Energy saving (High energy efficiency with compact distributed power supply)
2) High environmental performance (Clean, low noise, low vibration, CO2 emission reduction)
(5)Duration From June 23, 2017 to the end of March, 2018
(6)Place Izumi center, Technology Research Institute of Osaka Prefecture, Local Independent Administrative Agency
(7)Content 1) Evaluation of safety and reliability after continuous operation for over 4,000 hours under actual load environment.
2) Implementation of research, testing, and evaluation for further improvement of commercial and industrial SOFC

News release by Hitachi Zosen
Demonstration start of commercial and industrial SOFC under actual load environment under actual load environment

News release by NEDO
Achieve total efficiency of 90% by demonstration test of SOFC