Use of NaNiCl battery for mitigation of SOFC stack cycling in base-load telecommunication power system—a preliminary evaluation

  • Jakub Kupecki Institute of Power Engineering - Research Institute
  • Konrad Motyliński
  • Marco Ferraro
  • Francesco Sergi
  • Nicola Zanon


Fuel cells are among the most promising technologies for clean power generation. Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) arecharacterized by high efficiency, fuel flexibility and a wide range of operating conditions. SOFC are the preferredfuel cell technology for micro-combined heat and power (micro-CHP) units, but they are prone to rapid performancedegradation when exposed to thermal and electrical cycling. To overcome this issue, alternative methods aresought to assure high durability and long-lasting operation by mitigating the cycling. This can be achieved bylimiting the number of cycles and maintaining stable operating conditions. One of the proposed solutions is tocreate a hybrid system combining an SOFC stack with a molten salt (NaNiCl) battery module. The NaNiCl batteryis well known for its high energy density, high durability and zero electrochemical self-discharge. This hybridsystem is a solution in which the fuel cell stack and the battery module are thermally and electrically integrated andoperate as a part of a cogenerator. Since both modules operate at elevated temperature, heat generated in thestack can be partially used to maintain a sufficient operating temperature of the battery pack. The SOFC/batteryhybrid enables high operational flexibility which is achieved by proper selection of the power ratios between the twocomponents. In this configuration the battery pack can be used to stabilize operation of the fuel cell stack and toallow for load-following operation of the hybrid. To evaluate the operation of a SOFC/battery, the dynamic modelsof the battery and fuel cell stack were developed in Aspen Hysys 8.5. The simulator enables predictive modelingof various operating conditions corresponding to the different power demand profiles.In the transitional states of the telecommunication system, the hybrid unit can either charge or discharge thebattery without cycling the fuel cell stack. Simulations are needed to evaluate the performance of the SOFC/batteryhybrid system, in particular to analyze the capability to follow the load profile during operation in island mode.


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How to Cite
KUPECKI, Jakub et al. Use of NaNiCl battery for mitigation of SOFC stack cycling in base-load telecommunication power system—a preliminary evaluation. Journal of Power Technologies, [S.l.], v. 96, n. 1, p. 63--71, apr. 2016. ISSN 2083-4195. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 26 july 2021.
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