(126b) Development of Fuel Processor for Residential PEFC Systems

Authors: 
Ohashi, M., Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd.
Baba, Y., Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd.
Inagaki, S., Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd.
Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd. commercialized the world's first residential fuel cell "ENE FARM" by joint development with Panasonic Co., Ltd. in 2009. The total number of sales in Tokyo Gas area has reached over 70,000. ENE-FARM generates power by the reaction between the oxygen in the air and the hydrogen reformed from city gas through polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs). In addition, hot water can also be produced by exhaust heat recovery while generating power.

The fuel processor (FP) produces hydrogen necessary for power generation from city gas. The FP is composed of a vaporizer, catalyst layers, and a burner. Tokyo Gas has been developing various fuel processing technologies since 1998. In 2003, the efficiency and compactness of the FP developed by Tokyo gas has attained world’s highest level. At the same time, this component can be mass produced at low cost. However, for the residential PEFC systems to become more widespread, further cost reduction of the FP is required.

In this study, we focused on reducing the amount of catalysts. The FP performance is controlled by the steam carbon ratio (S/C) of fuel and temperature of the catalyst layers during the fuel processing. Evaluation results of the FP performance under various condition of S/C and temperature of the catalyst layers using process simulator (VMG SimTM, Virtual Materials Group, Inc) will be reported.

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