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This hybrid power-generation system combines SOFC and a gas turbine

By Gerald Ondrey |

Last month, Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd. (MHPS; Yokohama, Japan; www.mhps.com) launched a new, pressurized, hybrid power-generation system (photo) that integrates solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC) stacks with micro gas turbines (MGT). The hybrid system (diagram) has a broad range of commercial and industrial applications, and is especially suitable for distributed or cogeneration power systems, says the company. SOFCs are ceramic fuel cells that operate at a high temperature of 900°C. In a pressurized hybrid system, power is generated directly by chemical reaction between O2 in the air and H2 and CO extracted from reformed city gas; residual fuel is then used to drive an MGT. This two-stage system achieves significantly higher power generation efficiency and, as a result, saves substantial energy. Air pressurized in the MGT’s compressor is supplied to the SOFCs for use in generating power, and then high-temperature exhaust is fed to the MGT and the heat and pressure, together with the residual fuel, are used to generate power. The pressurized SOFCs, having substantially increased voltage as a result of pressurization, lead to enhanced power generation efficiency, says the company. The demonstration system is in the 250-kW…
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