Gasifiers with Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFC)


  • Dr Vladimir Cobas


Biomass is regarded as an alternative to fossil energy. Gasifier/SOFC hybrid systems offer an efficient and sustainable way for future combined heat and power (CHP) generation. Biosyngas from biomass gasifiers can be used as the fuel for SOFCs when it is clean enough. However, contaminants like particulates, tars, sulfur compounds, alkali compounds and chlorine compounds in biosyngas may degrade the performance of SOFC stack. Therefore, it is necessary to develop proper gas cleaning systems to couple gasifiers and SOFCs. To use the purified biosyngas for SOFC stack which is usually designed for natural gas and to obtain high efficiencies, suitable SOFC operation parameters are to be identified. Detailed modeling and experimental activities are expected to be carried out with gasifier-SOFC systems employing the gas cleaning system developed.


To integrate a 5 kW SOFC-CHP unit with a biomass gasifier and to evaluate its performance. Suitable operation parameters for various system components are to be identified in order to achieve high efficiencies and long term operation. An important task is to develop a proper gas cleaning system to couple the gasifier and the SOFC stack.

Work programme

1. Studies on influence of biosyngas and contaminants in it on SOFC performance at cell and stack level.

2. Design of various system components such as the gas cleaning devices for testing a 5 KW SOFC stack together with a biomass gasifier.

3. CFD analysis of the performance of SOFC cells/stack with different fuels such as hydrogen, methane and biosyngas

4. Design improvements of an SOFC system specifically for biosyngas applications

5. Participation in testing an SOFC stack connected to a biomass gasifier and comparison of experimental results with the modeling results (together with University of Itajuba)

Project partners:

Federal university de Itajubá

Energy Technology

Involved People:
Ad Verkooijen
Theo Woudstra

Facilities used: