Generic Diagnosis Instrument for SOFC Systems

Project Information
Framework Programme: 
Call for proposals: 
Application area: 
Stationary power production and CHP

The state of health of any SOFC system is currently difficult to evaluate, which makes it difficult to respond to a fault or degradation with appropriate counter measure, to ensure the required reliability level. The GENIUS project aims to develop a “GENERIC” tool that would only use process values (normal measurements and system control input parameters) and that would be based on a validated diagnostic algorithm. Such an algorithm would use a “GENERIC” approach so that all SOFC developers could use and implement it in their respective systems according to their specific constraints. To guarantee this “GENERIC” character, stacks and systems from four different manufacturers will be tested using commonly defined test plan based on the “Design Of Experiment” methodology. Three different types of models will be evaluated in parallel by four different academic institutions in order to define the optimal tool for fault detection and degradation identification. This will be done taking into account both “on board” diagnostic and "off-line" diagnostic requirements. The diagnosis would generate a set of indicators able to quantify either the drift or the difference of the actual status with respect to nominal or expected performance. A diagnostic hardware integrating the best algorithm will be developed and validated in two different SOFC systems. Finally, physical parameters and interactions will be correlated with degradation mechanisms. This correlation will allow the definition of either counter measures (in case of fault or degradation) or of a more optimal operation point. This will help in reducing maintenance to yearly intervals and in reaching a target of tens of thousands hours for stack or system operation lifetime.

Project details
Project reference: 
SP1-JTI-FCH.2008.3.1 - Operation diagnostics and control for stationary applications
Project type: 
Research and technological development
Contract type: 
Collaborative Project
Start date: 
Monday, February 1, 2010
End date: 
Thursday, January 31, 2013
36 months
Project cost: 
€ 3,861,447.09
Project funding: 
€ 1,998,373.42

European Institute for Energy Research (EIFER), Germany

Contact email: 
Other participating organisations: 
(Ceramic Fuel Cells Limited, CFCL) United Kingdom
EBZ GmbH Germany
FC Lab France
Hexis Switzerland
HT Ceramix Switzerland
Topsoe Fuel Cell (TopSoE) Denmark
University of Genova Italy
University of Salerno Italy
Technical Research Center of Finland (VTT)         Finland
Wärtsilä Finland
Inno-TSD France
Patents and Publications
Marra D., Proceedings of the ASME Design Engineering Technical Conference 07/08/2011, 449-455, "“Implementation of a model-based methodology aimed at detecting degradation and faulty operation in SOFC systems”"
Yousfi Steiner N, Fuel Cells 27/03/2012, 302-309, "Application of Fault Tree Analysis to Fuel cell diagnosis"
M. Sorrentino, D. Marra, C. Pianese, M. Guida, F. Postiglione, K. Wang, A. Pohjoranta, Energy Procedia. Vol. 45, 2013. Pg.298-307 ISSN:1876-6102 " (2014). On the Use of Neural Networks and Statistical Tools for Nonlinear Modeling and On-field Diagnosis of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Stack"
Wang, K, International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 01/06/2011, 7212-7228, "A Review on Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Models"
Pohjoranta A., Sorrentino M., Pianese C., Amatruda F., Hottinen T. (2015). Validation of Neural Network-based Fault Diagnosis for Multi-stack Fuel Cell Systems: Stack Voltage Deviation Detection. ENERGY PROCEDIA. Vol. 81. Pag.173-181 ISSN:1876-6102.
D. Marra, M. Sorrentino, C. Pianese, B. Iwanschitz, Journal of Power Sources. Vol. 241, 2013 Pag.320-329 ISSN:0378-7753, “. A neural network estimator of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell performance for on-field diagnostics and prognostics applications”
P. Polverino, C. Pianese, M. Sorrentino, A. Esposito, B. Ludwig, B. Iwanschitz, A. Mai, FDFC 2013 5th International Conference on Fundamentals & Development of Fuel Cells, April 16th – 18th, 2013, Karlsruhe, Germany “Experimental validation of a model-based diagnosis algorithm dedicated to a SOFC μ-CHP system”
A Esposito, B Ludwig, P Mocoteguy, P Polverino, C Pianese, B Iwanschitz, A Mai, FDFC 2013 5th International Conference on Fundamentals & Development of Fuel Cells, April 16th – 18th, 2013, Karlsruhe, Germany “Experimental investigation of an SOFC μ-CHP system for the development and validation of diagnostic algorithm”
P. Polverino, C. Pianese, M. Sorrentino, D. Marra, Journal of Power Sources 280 (2015) 320-338, “Model-based development of a fault signature matrix to improve solid oxide fuel cell systems on-site diagnosis”
P. Polverino, A. Esposito, C. Pianese, B. Ludwig, B. Iwanschitz, A. Mai, Journal of Power Sources 306 (2016) 646-657, “On-line experimental validation of a model-based diagnostic algorithm dedicated to a solid oxide fuel cell system”