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Performance optimum analysis of an irreversible molten carbonate fuel cell–Stirling heat engine hybrid system

Liwei Chen, Houcheng Zhang, Songhua Gao and Huixian Yan

Energy, 2014, vol. 64, issue C, 923-930

Abstract: A new hybrid system mainly consists of a molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC) and a Stirling heat engine is established, where the Stirling heat engine is driven by the high-quality waste heat generated in the MCFC. Based on the electrochemistry and non-equilibrium thermodynamics, analytical expressions for the efficiency and power output of the hybrid system are derived by taking various irreversible losses into account. It shows that the performance of the MCFC can be greatly enhanced by coupling a Stirling heat engine to further convert the waste heat for power generation. By employing numerical calculations, not only the influences of multiple irreversible losses on the performance of the hybrid system are analyzed, but also the impacts of some operating conditions such as the operating temperature, input gas compositions and operating pressure on the performance of the hybrid system are also discussed. The investigation method in the present paper is feasible for some other similar energy conversion systems as well.

Keywords: Molten carbonate fuel cell; Stirling heat engine; Hybrid system; Performance optimum analysis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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Handle: RePEc:eee:energy:v:64:y:2014:i:c:p:923-930