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High temperature fuel cells for automotive applications

: Stelter, M.

AutoTechnology 6 (2006), October, pp.38-41
ISSN: 1616-8216
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IKTS ()

High temperature solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) can be effectively used for providing electrical energy for a number of automotive applications. They provide interesting opportunities for vehicle on-board electric power generation from today's and future carbon-based fuels such as petrol or diesel much more efficiently than conventional generation technologies. An industry standard, rugged SOFC cell can currently produce an area-specific power density of circa 250 to 400 mw in a stack when operated with real world re-formate. This power output can potentially be doubled using advanced materials. The possibility of silently generating up to 10 kW of electricity from on-board fuel during periods when the main engine is not running makes SOFcs suitable as a range extender for complete electric traction. They can be manufactured using a number of production technologies present in automotive industry, thus providing many business opportunities for suppliers.