(129e) Assessing the Feasibility of Conceptual Electrocatalytic Processes through Inverse Techno-Economic Modeling
As economic considerations are a primary driver to technology adoption, we have developed a generalized techno-economic model that connect system performance and cost targets to the physical, electrochemical, and cost parameters of constituent components with a broader goal of quantitatively assessing a diverse set of conceptual electrochemical systems. By integrating this model into early-stage fundamental and applied research efforts, we articulate performance benchmarks for multiple components, highlight gaps in knowledge, and, ultimately inspire innovative application-informed approaches. In this presentation, I will describe model formulation and applications using three different case studies. First, to establish the accuracy of such a model, I will evaluate water electrolysis as a means of hydrogen production comparing our results to established U.S. Department of Energy models. Second, I will assess the feasibility of electrochemically upgrading biomass-derived small molecules for use in fuel or chemical manufacturing. Third and finally, I will illustrate that while, depending the catalyst choice and reaction conditions, carbon dioxide electroreduction can yield many scientifically-interesting products, only a subset are viable technology options. Such inverse techno-economic models can guide research investigations to address the most important limitations in proposed technology platforms and to provide credible pathways to cost-effective deployment.