Fundació Institut de Recerca de l'Energia de Catalunya
The Catalonia Institute for Energy Research (IREC) is a research institution under the trust of different governmental and private organizations, including some of the world-leading companies in the energy sector (REPSOL, ALSTOM, GAS NATURAL, etc). The group on Nanoionics and Fuel Cells, which coordinates the Cell3Ditor proposal, holds experience in the industrial fabrication and characterization of solid oxide cells for electrolysis and power generation by means of classical ceramic production techniques: DESATA2 (industrial contract), SCAPE (FP7-EUREKA Korea-Spain -2013- 8736, EU) or ENDURANCE (FP7-FCH-JU-2013-1-621207). Currently, the group leads the national project CHISTE (Complex Hierarchical Infiltrated Structures for High Temperature Electrolysis, ENE2013-47826-C4-3-R), devoted to the fabrication of hierarchical structures for electrolysis by 3D printing of ceramics. The Energy Economics group focused on LCA analysis and energy markets and policies (recent experience in LCA for solid oxide cells in the project SAFARI and SAPIENS, FP7-FCH-JU-2012-1-325323 and FP7-FCH-JU-2011-1-303415) will also contribute to increase the background of the consortium of the Cell3Ditor project.
Danmarks Tekniske Universitet
DTU: The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) is one of Europe's foremost technical universities. The Department of Energy Conversion and Storage (DTU Energy), involved in this project, has more than 20 years of experience in developing and up-scaling advanced functional ceramics, including expertise in sintering, deposition, printing and synthesis of functional nano-ceramics. DTU Energy Conversion's facilities include a ceramic process laboratory on a pre-pilot scale with a capacity of producing tens of thousands of ceramic fuel cells per year, and advanced, fully automated testing and characterization facilities for single cells and stacks, including equipment for testing at elevated pressures. DTU Energy is also currently the coordinator of a large Danish National project of continuous hydrothermal synthesis of functional materials for catalysis and batteries (http://www.proeco.dk/), and a large Danish project of material project on ceramic multilayer components and complex architectures (http://www.optimac.dk/Projects). DTU has developed one of the first proof-of-concepts of 3D printed SOFCs.
Francisco Albero, S.A.
FAE: The expertise of FAE in industrial processing of devices based on advanced ceramics will be crucial for a proper post-processing of the 3D printed objects as well as for better understanding the benefits of this new manufacturing technology. Francisco Albero SA (FAE) is a SME based on Barcelona, Spain, dedicated to design and manufacture electrical and electronic products for the automotive market. FAE has been developing multilayer ceramics since 1998, and has facilities for sintering of specific designs for each application. Among other ceramic-based products, FAE manufactures oxygen lambda sensors fully developed in house. This highly complex multi-layer product was introduced in the market in 2009 after ten years of R&D activity. In the last years, FAE has been actively participating in different research projects for developing devices based on advanced ceramics for the energy sector. In particular, the projects DESATA2 (industrial contract) for fabricating electrolysis cells or SCAPE (EUREKA program) for scaling up the fabrication of solid oxide fuel cells, carried out together with IREC, represent a strong background for the Cell3Ditor.
3DCeram: The development of the 3D printer and SLA slurries for the Cell3Ditor project will be headed by 3DCeram. 3DCeram is a SME based on Limoges, France. The company capitalizes on the many possibilities offered by laser stereolithography applied to ceramics, a proprietary technology. 3DCeram has been manufacturing ceramic parts with SLA since 2005 (around 10 000 parts per year). In 2011, the company developed its own printer technology, which started selling in 2014. 3DCeram has participated in different research and industrial projects to develop SLA processing for the fabrication of heat exchangers for Air Liquide or complex structure and wash coats of PAACS catalyst. Recently, 3DCeram work on the Rapid project (French army) to couple ceramic 3D printing and ink deposit. This strong background on manufacturing and slurry formulation together with recent innovation actions in the line of hybridize their machine will be remarkable inputs to feed into the Cell3Ditor project.
Promethean Particles LTD
Country: United Kingdom
The nanodispersions to be employed for inkjet printing will be mainly developed by Promethean Particles (PROM) and DTU. Promethean Particles is a UK-based SME that designs and develops inorganic nanomaterials in liquid dispersions. The company is based on a patented reactor that allowed truly continuous hydrothermal synthesis of inorganic nanoparticles for the first time (patent WO2005077505). Their unique production process perfectly matches the Cell3Ditor project requirements since it allows them to tailor the nanoparticles to get the best functionality for an end use application. PROM is a participant in FP7 project POINTS (Printable Organic-Inorganic Transparent Semiconductor Devices, GA# 263042 FP7-NMP-2010-SMALL-4) in which a range of inorganic semiconductor and dielectric materials have been synthesised which have shown promising performance in fully printed thin-film transistor (TFT) devices. In particular an indium zinc oxide (IZO) nanoparticle-based ink has been developed and formulated by PROM and this material has been demonstrated at the lab-scale to show excellent film-forming properties and inkjet printability. Later in the project PROM intends to show that it is possible to scale-up this synthesis route to generate pilot-scale batches of IZO ink. This prior experience will be a solid background for delivering successful materials into the Cell3Ditor project.
Universidad de la Laguna
ULL: The Inorganic Chemistry department in La Laguna (ULL) may be catalogued as one of the best-equipped labs in Spain in inorganic synthesis and electrochemical characterisation. The Nano and Microengineering of Materials Group involved in the Cell3Ditor project, has a track record in SOFC technology and materials engineering and they specialise in the development and testing of new fuel cell materials and also in the production of hierarchachical structures for energy applications. From 2010, they have been actively working on microstructural engineering of ceramics by different methods, including 3D printing. Currently, ULL is coordinating a national project called R3DES (Reliable 3D Printed Energy Systems, ENE2013-47826-C4-3-R) involving 7 partners (including IREC) devoted to the fabrication of ceramic devices for energy applications by ceramic 3D printing (SLA and powder-bed inkjet printing).
SAAN Energi AB
SAAN: The design guidelines of the Cell3Ditor SOFC stack for integration in real power generation systems and the required quality control and standards will be headed by SAAN Energy AB (SAAN) and HyGear Fuel Cell Systems B.V (HFCS). SAAN is a Swedish small and growing company (launched in 2012) that develops and market forwards solutions for fuel cells in diversified energy segments, including the segments of decentralized power systems and combined heat and power units. The key personnel of SAAN energy hold long experience in SOFC integration at DLR. As a company has participated in stack development projects such as EVOLVE (FP7-FCH-JU-2011-303429) at the EU level and other German projects linked to DLR.
HyGear Fuel Cell Systems B.V
HFCS is a small/medium enterprise based in Arnhem, the Netherlands, with focus on development and manufacturing of fuel cell systems and on reformer technology for on-site hydrogen supply. The acquisition of Plug Power Europe, the European office of one of the world leaders on fuel cell development, has strengthened the fuel cell integration capabilities of HFCS. The group has built-up experience on kWe-range SOFC system integration and design within the Ohio Department of Development's Third Frontier Program funded project, a collaboration of Plug Power with NexTech Materials. The joined group has shown their fuel cell skills within the EUVPP, NextGenCell, LocoWKK, HotPEMS, GreenAir and other projects.