Modeling a 5 kWₑ Planar Solid Oxide Fuel Cell based System Operating on JP-8 Fuel and a Comparison with Tubular Cell based System for Auxiliary and Mobile Power Applications


A steady state planar solid oxide fuel cell (P-SOFC) based system operating on desulfurized JP-8 fuel was modeled using Aspen Plus simulation software for auxiliary and mobile power applications. An onboard autothermal reformer (ATR) employed to reform the desulfurized JP-8 fuel was coupled with the P-SOFC stack to provide for H2 and CO as fuel, minimizing the cost and complexity associated with hydrogen storage. Characterization of the ATR reformer was conducted by varying the steam to carbon ratio (H2O/C) from 0.1 to 1.0 at different ATR operating temperatures (700-800 C) while maintaining the P-SOFC stack temperature at 850 C. A fraction of the anode recycle was used as the steam and heat source for autothermal reforming of the JP-8 fuel, intending to make the system lighter and compact for mobile applications. System modeling revealed a maximum net AC efficiency of 37.1% at 700 C and 29.2% at 800 C ATR operating temperatures, respectively. Parametric analyses with respect to fuel utilization factor (Uf) and current density (j) were conducted to determine optimum operating conditions. Finally, the P-SOFC based system was compared with a previously published [1] tubular solid oxide fuel cell based (T-SOFC) system to identify the relative advantages over one another.


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Autothermal Reformer; Auxiliary Power Unit; JP-8 Fuel; Mobile Electric Power; Solid Oxide Fuel Cell

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Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


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© 2014 Elsevier B.V, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2014