German utility Energie Baden-Württemberg (EnBW) and engineering giant Siemens have announced plans to develop a megawatt-class fuel-cell power plant with up to 70% efficiency.
The plans call for the construction of a high temperature SOFC-microturbine hybrid demonstration plant, with groundwork scheduled to be completed by 2008 for a small pilot plant phase scheduled to run for three years.
The associated control concept will be developed by the German Institute for Aviation Engineering, while the test components will be coupled together starting in 2009. The configuration is expected to be optimised beginning in 2012 which will be followed with the 1 MW version.
Siemens will initially supply a 5 kW high-temperature solid oxide fuel cell.
The research aims to optimise the operation of stationary fuel cells in conjunction with gas turbines, accelerating commercial development of hybrid SOFCs by roughly a decade.