Toyota Motor Corp announced April 26, 2017, that it has started the verification test of a pressure-type hybrid power generation system combining an SOFC (solid oxide fuel cell) and a micro gas turbine.
The system is used as a power generation facility for Toyota's Motomachi Plant (Toyota City, Aichi Prefecture), and the company will verify and evaluate its energy efficiency, operability and durability.
The system generates electricity by using (1) carbon monoxide and hydrogen produced by modifying natural gas and (2) the fuel cell. The SOFC uses ion-conductive ceramic as electrolyte. It operates at high temperatures (700-1,000°C), does not require platinum as a catalyst and has a high power generation efficiency. It can be used for a wide range of applications including a small-scale residential system and a large-scale power source for factories.
The system also generates electricity by using combustible gas that has not reacted in the fuel cell and high-temperature/high-pressure exhaust gas to turn a micro gas turbine. The two-step power generation contributed to realizing a power generation efficiency of 55%.
The rated output of the system is 250W. Furthermore, a co-generation system was realized by using exhaust gas of the micro gas turbine, improving total thermal efficiency to 65%. Electricity and exhaust gas generated by the system are used in the Motomachi Plant.
The verification test is conducted as part of the "Technical Verification for Releasing Cylindrical SOFC-Micro Gas Turbine Hybrid System in Market" of New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). Toyota, Toyota Turbine And Systems Inc (Toyota's subsidiary based in Toyota City, Aichi Prefecture) and Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Ltd (MHPS, Yokohama City) jointly developed the system.