HEATSTACK’s objective was reducing the cost of the 2 main components in fuel cell systems: the heat exchanger and the fuel cell stack. Through manufacturing innovation, materials research and increasing system durability, these objectives have been met. PNO supported the coordinator, Senior Flexonics, to manage the project and led dissemination activity.
Senior Flexonics UK developed the heat exchanger with a production-ready cathode air pre-heater (CAPH) design that uses AluChrom 318, a new material investigated by the University of Birmingham. CAPH testing has been supported by ICI Caldaie, with 90% effectiveness proven. It offers robustness, cost effectiveness and industry leading low levels of chromium leakage. New equipment and tooling were built, then installed and commissioned in Senior Flexonics CZ.
Sunfire GmbH developed the fuel cell stack by designing new manufacturing processes such as printing glass seals and developing line automation to save both costs and time. Sunfire have also taken forward knowledge and technology Vaillant to integrate their stack and the Senior Flexonics heat exchanger into a prototype system, which underwent extensive testing to prove it ready for series production.
HEATSTACK was funded through the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH-JU), which receives funding from Horizon 2020 and Hydrogen Europe.