JP2013016354A - Fuel cell system and method for operating the same - Google Patents

Fuel cell system and method for operating the same Download PDF

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JP2013016354A
JP2013016354A JP2011148330A JP2011148330A JP2013016354A JP 2013016354 A JP2013016354 A JP 2013016354A JP 2011148330 A JP2011148330 A JP 2011148330A JP 2011148330 A JP2011148330 A JP 2011148330A JP 2013016354 A JP2013016354 A JP 2013016354A
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fuel cell
operation mode
cell stack
air
cooling water
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JP2011148330A
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JP5749100B2 (en
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Masakazu Hidai
将一 干鯛
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Toshiba Corp
株式会社東芝
Toshiba Fuel Cell Power Systems Corp
東芝燃料電池システム株式会社
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    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y02TECHNOLOGIES OR APPLICATIONS FOR MITIGATION OR ADAPTATION AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE
    • Y02EREDUCTION OF GREENHOUSE GAS [GHG] EMISSIONS, RELATED TO ENERGY GENERATION, TRANSMISSION OR DISTRIBUTION
    • Y02E60/00Enabling technologies or technologies with a potential or indirect contribution to GHG emissions mitigation
    • Y02E60/50Fuel cells

Abstract

PROBLEM TO BE SOLVED: To perform efficient operation control in accordance with seasonal fluctuations of heat demand and daily heat demand.
A fuel cell system for home use, in which a fuel cell stack 11 generates electricity and heat by an electrochemical reaction between fuel and oxygen, a mechanism 21 for supplying fuel gas to the fuel cell stack 11, and a fuel. Mechanisms 31 and 32 for supplying air to the battery stack 11, mechanisms 51, 52 and 53 for supplying cooling water to the fuel cell stack 11, and normal operation for supplying fuel gas, air and cooling water at predetermined flow rates, respectively And at least one of fuel gas, air, and cooling water at a flow rate lower than a predetermined flow rate than during normal operation, and a control unit 41 that switches according to heat demand.
[Selection] Figure 1

Description

  Embodiments described herein relate generally to a fuel cell system and an operation method thereof.

  In recent years, fuel cells that generate electricity and heat by the electrochemical reaction between hydrogen in fuel gas and oxygen in the air have attracted attention. In addition to automotive and portable applications, they are used for stationary applications in homes, etc. Development of a fuel cell system is underway. In particular, a domestic fuel cell system has attracted attention as a cogeneration system that generates hot water by heating secondary cooling water by reaction heat generated simultaneously with power generation by an electrochemical reaction.

  The domestic fuel cell system includes a fuel cell stack, a fuel reformer, an air supply means such as a blower, a cooling water circulation means, a control means, a hot water storage tank, and the like. The cooling water circulation means is a pump for supplying cooling water to the fuel cell stack, a means for purifying the cooling water, and heat for heating the secondary cooling water supplied to the home by exchanging heat with the cooling water heated by the fuel cell stack. Consists of exchangers. The heat exchanger is also provided in the exhaust gas line of the fuel cell stack, and warms the secondary cooling water by heat exchange with the exhaust gas. Hot water heated by these heat exchangers is stored in a hot water storage tank.

  A certain amount of operation time is required to store hot water for use at home. Hot water is often used at night for bathing and heating, and the necessary hot water is stored at night by driving from morning to night. The amount of hot water used varies depending on the outside air temperature. Therefore, in the above-described control means, the demand for hot water is predicted, the operation time for securing the necessary amount of hot water is obtained, and the operation start time is determined.

  However, in this type of household fuel cell system, there is a problem that the electric power demand and heat demand at home change according to the season, and the change does not coincide between the electric power demand and the heat demand. Further, in winter, there is a problem that heat radiation from the hot water tank is large because the outside air temperature is low. For this reason, it was difficult to perform efficient operation control according to heat demand.

JP 2007-234347 A

  The problem to be solved by the invention is to provide a fuel cell system capable of performing efficient operation control in accordance with seasonal fluctuations of heat demand and daily heat demand, and an operation method thereof.

  The fuel cell system of the embodiment includes a fuel cell stack that generates electricity and heat by an electrochemical reaction between fuel and oxygen, means for supplying fuel gas to the fuel cell stack, and air to the fuel cell stack Means for supplying cooling water to the fuel cell stack, a normal operation mode for supplying the fuel gas, air, and cooling water at a predetermined flow rate, respectively, and the fuel gas than in the normal operation mode, And a control unit that switches between a low flow rate operation mode in which at least one of air and cooling water is supplied at a flow rate smaller than the predetermined flow rate according to heat demand.

  ADVANTAGE OF THE INVENTION According to this invention, the efficient operation control according to the seasonal fluctuation | variation of the heat demand and the heat demand of the day can be performed.

The schematic block diagram which shows the domestic fuel cell system concerning 1st Embodiment. The characteristic view which is for demonstrating the effect | action of 1st Embodiment, and shows the relationship between an air utilization factor and temperature. The schematic diagram for demonstrating 1st Embodiment and showing the relationship between the heat demand in 1 day, and the amount of hot water storage. The schematic block diagram which shows the domestic fuel cell system concerning 2nd Embodiment.

  Hereinafter, the details of the embodiment will be described with reference to the drawings.

(First embodiment)
FIG. 1 is a schematic configuration diagram showing a household fuel cell system according to the first embodiment.

  The fuel cell system of the present embodiment includes a fuel cell stack 11 formed by stacking a plurality of fuel cells, a means for supplying fuel gas to the fuel cell stack 11, means for supplying air, means for supplying cooling water, and control It is comprised from the part 41 grade | etc.,. Although not shown in FIG. 1, a booster that boosts the direct current output obtained by the fuel cell stack 11, and an inverter that converts direct current output (DC) into alternating current output (AC) are provided.

  The means for supplying fuel to the fuel cell stack 11 includes a fuel supply line 21 and a fuel reformer (not shown). The fuel reformer is a device that converts raw fuel such as city gas, natural gas, propane gas, and kerosene into a fuel gas containing hydrogen by a reforming reaction. In the fuel cell system using hydrogen as a raw fuel, the fuel reformer is omitted.

  Means for supplying air to the fuel cell stack 11 includes an air supply line 31 and an air blower 32. The air flow rate from the air blower 32 is adjusted by a control signal from the control unit 41.

  Means for supplying cooling water to the fuel cell stack 11 includes a cooling water line 51, a pump 52, and a heat exchanger 53. Cooling water is introduced into the fuel cell stack 11 from the cooling water line 51. The introduced cooling water absorbs heat generated by the fuel cell reaction and becomes high temperature and comes out of the fuel cell stack 11. The high-temperature cooling water that has come out of the fuel cell stack 11 is introduced into the heat exchanger 53.

  Secondary cooling water is introduced into the heat exchanger 53 from the waste heat recovery line 61 by the pump 62, and the secondary cooling water is heated by the high-temperature cooling water from the fuel cell stack 11. Although not shown in FIG. 1, a heat exchanger is also provided in the exhaust gas line of the fuel cell stack, and also in this heat exchanger, the secondary cooling water is warmed by heat exchange with the exhaust gas. The secondary cooling water (hot water) heated by these heat exchangers is stored in the hot water storage tank 63.

  The flow rate of air supplied to the fuel cell stack 11 is determined according to the generated current. The air flow rate necessary for power generation is obtained by the following equation (1).

(Flow rate) = (Current) x (Number of cells) x (1 / 4F) x 22.4
× (1 / 0.21) × (1 / air utilization rate) [NL / sec] (1)
In the above equation, F is the Faraday constant, 22.4 [mol / L] is the volume of the ideal gas 1 [mol] in the standard state, and 0.21 is the oxygen concentration in the air. The air utilization rate is a ratio of air consumed by power generation in the air supplied to the fuel cell stack 11. Since the current value differs between the rated output operation and the low load operation, the flow rate of air introduced into the fuel cell stack 11 is controlled by a signal from the control unit 41 when the operation state is switched. As a method of controlling the air flow rate, a method of changing the number of revolutions of the air blower 32 or changing the opening of a valve provided in the air supply line 31 is taken.

  During operation of the fuel cell stack 11, water is generated on the cathode side by a power generation reaction. The phenomenon in which the generated water hinders the diffusion of the reaction gas and the voltage decreases is called flooding. In order to suppress performance degradation due to long-term operation of the fuel cell stack 11, it is necessary to prevent flooding. In order to prevent flooding, there are methods in which the air flow rate is increased, the amount of oxygen supplied to the catalyst surface is ensured, or the amount of product water taken out by excess air is increased.

  For this reason, the air flow rate during normal operation, that is, the air utilization rate, is set in a range where no flooding occurs. The air utilization rate during normal operation is generally 30 to 60%, and is determined by the specifications or operating conditions of the fuel cell stack.

  The present embodiment is characterized in that, apart from the normal operation, an operation mode (low flow operation mode) in which the air flow rate is reduced as compared with the normal operation (normal operation mode) is provided as the low flow operation. At this time, (air use rate during normal operation) <(air use rate during low flow rate operation). During low flow operation, the operation is performed under conditions where there is less excess air than during normal operation.

  FIG. 2 shows the cooling water outlet temperature and the air exhaust gas temperature from the fuel cell stack 11 when the air utilization rate is changed. In the low flow rate operation mode in which the air flow rate is reduced, the air utilization rate is increased. It can be seen that as the air utilization rate increases, any temperature increases. Therefore, the effect of increasing the heat exchange efficiency of the fuel cell system can be obtained by selecting the low flow rate operation mode.

  As described above, during the low flow rate operation, the amount of heat brought out by excess air is suppressed, so that the fuel cell stack 11 can be operated at a high temperature, and there is an advantage of improving the heat recovery efficiency of the fuel cell system. is there. However, if the amount of excess air is small, flooding is likely to occur, which may reduce the performance of the fuel cell stack 11. On the other hand, the normal operation has an advantage that flooding can be prevented although the heat recovery efficiency is inferior to that during the low flow operation.

  The present embodiment is characterized in that the normal operation and the low flow operation are switched according to the heat demand of the user. That is, the low flow operation is performed in the winter when the heat demand is high. In particular, the afternoon operation is set to a low flow rate operation in accordance with an increase in nighttime heat demand. In this case, it is possible to suppress the heat radiation from the hot water storage tank 63 and improve the thermal efficiency by using the accumulated hot water without leaving time. On the other hand, since the outside air temperature is low and heat dissipation from the hot water storage tank 63 is large from midnight to morning, if a large amount of hot water is stored at low flow rate operation, the heat dissipation amount increases accordingly. Furthermore, since low-flow operation may cause a decrease in performance of the fuel cell stack 11, it is desirable to operate in normal operation during the time period from midnight to morning.

  The timing of low-flow operation depends on the installation environment of the system. As a guideline, it is desirable to implement low-flow operation when the outside air temperature at night falls below 5 ° C in winter.

  The air utilization rate during low flow operation is 70 to 90%. As the air utilization rate is higher, the effect of keeping the temperature of the fuel cell stack 11 at a high level by reducing the heat brought out by excess air is obtained. On the other hand, if the air utilization rate exceeds 90%, there is a risk of voltage drop due to flooding even during low load operation. Therefore, it is desirable that the air utilization rate is 70 to 90%.

  In FIG. 3, the relationship between the heat demand and the amount of hot water storage in this embodiment is shown in comparison with a conventional example. In FIG. 3, P is the heat demand, Q is the amount of hot water stored in the conventional example, and R is the amount of hot water stored in the present embodiment.

  Household heat demand, that is, the amount of hot water used varies depending on the season. In general, heat demand is high in winter and low in summer. This is because the amount of hot water used for baths and heating facilities increases in the winter when the outside air temperature is low. On the other hand, electricity demand is high in winter and summer. The increase in power demand in summer is due to an increase in the amount of cooling used by air conditioners.

  A certain amount of operation time is required to store hot water for use at home. Hot water is often used at night as a bath and heating system, and the hot water needed for the night is stored by driving from morning to day to night. The amount of hot water used varies depending on the outside temperature. Therefore, in the above-described control means, the demand for hot water is predicted, the operation time for securing the necessary amount of hot water is obtained, and the operation start time is determined.

  The conventional apparatus is always operated normally with a large air flow rate, and it is necessary to store sufficient hot water before the time zone when the heat demand is large. For example, a sufficient amount of hot water is stored in the hot water storage tank 63 by operation from 0:00 to 18:00. At this time, since the amount of hot water in the hot water storage tank 63 increases considerably before the time zone in which hot water is actually used (after 18:00), the heat radiation from the hot water storage tank 63 is large until the time zone in which hot water is actually used. Become. Therefore, the efficiency of using hot water is poor.

  In this embodiment, the night operation is a normal operation with a large air flow rate, and the afternoon operation is a low flow operation. In this case, in the afternoon operation, since the operation is a low flow rate, sufficient hot water can be stored by a time zone with a large heat demand (after 18:00) in spite of a short time. At this time, since the time for storing the hot water is short, the amount of heat released from the hot water storage tank 63 is reduced, and the efficiency of using the hot water is improved. In addition, since normal driving is performed during night driving, flooding can be prevented. Moreover, since warm water can be collected in a short time, it is also possible to stop the operation in the morning time zone, for example.

  The time zone in which the low flow rate operation is performed is not necessarily limited to the afternoon, and can be appropriately changed according to the time when hot water is required, the amount of hot water, and the like. Furthermore, the amount of hot water required varies depending on the season. Accordingly, it is possible to perform operation control in accordance with seasonal fluctuations in heat demand by adjusting the time zone in which low flow rate operation is performed according to the outside air temperature.

  As described above, according to the present embodiment, by performing the low flow rate operation in the afternoon time zone, it is possible to perform efficient operation control in accordance with the daily heat demand. Moreover, flooding can be prevented from occurring by performing normal operation at night. In addition, the time zone between normal operation and low flow rate operation can be changed according to the temperature of the outside air, and efficient operation control in accordance with seasonal fluctuations in heat demand can be performed.

  In the present embodiment, the air flow rate is controlled according to the heat demand, but the flow rate of the fuel gas may be controlled instead. The effect similar to that of air can be obtained by reducing the flow rate of the fuel gas. However, since the fuel gas flow rate is smaller than the air flow rate in the fuel cell stack, the effect on the heat exchange efficiency is lower than that of air.

(Second Embodiment)
FIG. 4 is a schematic configuration diagram showing a household fuel cell system according to the second embodiment. In addition, the same code | symbol is attached | subjected to the same part as FIG. 1, and the detailed description is abbreviate | omitted.

  Although the basic configuration is the same as in FIG. 1, in the present embodiment, the liquid feed amount of the cooling water pump 52 can be controlled by a control signal from the control unit 41. In addition to the normal operation, an operation mode (low flow operation mode) in which the flow rate of the cooling water is reduced as compared with the normal operation (normal operation mode) is provided as the low flow operation.

  In the present embodiment, the flow rate of the cooling water introduced into the fuel cell stack 11 is reduced during the low flow rate operation. When shifting from the normal operation to the low flow rate operation, a signal is sent from the control unit 41 to the cooling water pump 52 to reduce the amount of liquid sent by the cooling water pump 52.

  If the coolant flow rate is reduced, the amount of heat taken out from the fuel cell stack 11 can be reduced, and the fuel cell stack 11 can be kept at a high temperature. At that time, the effect of keeping the temperature of the cooling water coming out of the fuel cell stack 11 high and keeping the heat exchange efficiency in the heat exchanger 53 high can be obtained.

  Similar to the first embodiment, the low flow rate operation is performed in winter when heat demand is high. In particular, the afternoon operation is set to a low flow rate operation in accordance with an increase in nighttime heat demand. By using the accumulated hot water without leaving time, it is possible to suppress heat dissipation from the hot water storage tank 63 and improve thermal efficiency. From midnight to morning, the heat from the hot water storage tank 63 is large because the outside air temperature is low. Since the low flow rate operation may cause the performance of the fuel cell stack 11 to deteriorate, it is desirable to operate in the normal operation during the time period from midnight to morning. The timing of low-flow operation depends on the installation environment of the system. As a guideline, it is desirable to perform low flow operation when the outside air temperature at night falls below 5 ° C.

  Thus, according to this embodiment, the utilization efficiency of warm water can be improved by controlling the flow rate of cooling water according to the heat demand. Therefore, the same effect as in the first embodiment can be obtained.

(Modification)
The present invention is not limited to the above-described embodiments. In the embodiment, the low flow rate operation is performed by reducing the flow rate of any one of fuel, air, and cooling water. However, the low flow rate operation is further improved by reducing these plural types of flow rates. It is also possible.

  Moreover, the setting of the time zone in which the normal operation and the low flow operation are performed can be appropriately changed according to the season and temperature. Furthermore, the system configuration is not limited to that shown in FIGS. 1 and 4, but a fuel cell stack, means for supplying fuel gas, air, and cooling water to the fuel cell stack, a normal operation mode, and a low flow rate. What is necessary is just to have a control part which switches an operation mode according to a heat demand.

  Although several embodiments of the present invention have been described, these embodiments are presented by way of example and are not intended to limit the scope of the invention. These novel embodiments can be implemented in various other forms, and various omissions, replacements, and changes can be made without departing from the scope of the invention. These embodiments and modifications thereof are included in the scope and gist of the invention, and are included in the invention described in the claims and the equivalents thereof.

DESCRIPTION OF SYMBOLS 11 ... Fuel cell stack 21 ... Fuel supply line 31 ... Air supply line 32 ... Air blower 41 ... Control part 51 ... Cooling water line 52 ... Cooling water pump 53 ... Heat exchanger 61 ... Heat recovery line 62 ... Heat recovery line pump 63 ... Hot water storage tank

Claims (8)

  1. A fuel cell stack that generates electricity and heat by an electrochemical reaction between fuel and oxygen;
    Means for supplying fuel gas to the fuel cell stack;
    Means for supplying air to the fuel cell stack;
    Means for supplying cooling water to the fuel cell stack;
    A normal operation mode in which the fuel gas, air, and cooling water are respectively supplied at a predetermined flow rate, and at least one of the fuel gas, air, and cooling water is less than the predetermined flow rate than in the normal operation mode. A control unit that switches between a low flow rate operation mode to be supplied at a flow rate according to heat demand,
    A fuel cell system comprising:
  2.   The control unit operates the fuel cell stack according to electric power demand and heat demand, and when operating the fuel cell stack to satisfy the heat demand, the heat demand is equal to or greater than a predetermined value within one day. When the time zone is A, the low-flow rate operation mode is set from time B to time zone A before the time zone A to the time zone A, and the other time is set to the normal operation mode. A fuel cell system.
  3.   3. The control unit according to claim 1, wherein the control unit performs switching between the normal operation mode and the low flow operation mode in winter, and performs the normal operation mode without switching the operation mode in other seasons. The fuel cell system described.
  4.   The control unit switches between the normal operation mode and the low flow operation mode when the outside air temperature at night falls below a predetermined value, and performs the normal operation mode without switching the operation mode in other cases. The fuel cell system according to claim 1 or 2, wherein
  5.   The fuel cell system according to any one of claims 1 to 3, wherein the control unit performs the low flow operation mode in the afternoon of a daily operation time, and performs the normal operation mode in other cases. .
  6.   The fuel cell system according to any one of claims 1 to 5, further comprising means for generating hot water by heat exchange with the cooling water supplied to the fuel cell stack and heated.
  7.   The fuel according to any one of claims 1 to 6, wherein in the steady operation mode, when there is no power demand, an operation stop state in which supply of the fuel gas, air, and cooling water is stopped is permitted. Battery system.
  8. A fuel cell stack that generates electricity and heat by an electrochemical reaction between fuel and oxygen; means for supplying fuel gas to the fuel cell stack; means for supplying air to the fuel cell stack; and A method of operating a fuel cell system, comprising: means for supplying cooling water,
    A normal operation mode in which the fuel gas, air, and cooling water are respectively supplied at a predetermined flow rate; and at least one of the fuel gas, air, and cooling water is less than the predetermined flow rate during the normal operation. There are two operation modes, the low flow operation mode supplied in
    When the outside air temperature at night falls below a predetermined value, the mode is switched between the normal operation mode and the low flow operation mode, and the time zone in which the heat demand is greater than or equal to a predetermined value within one day is A A fuel cell system operating method characterized in that the low flow operation mode is set from time B before time zone A to time zone A before the time zone A, and the other time is set to the normal operation mode or the operation stop state. .
JP2011148330A 2011-07-04 2011-07-04 fuel cell system Active JP5749100B2 (en)

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Cited By (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
WO2018003890A1 (en) * 2016-06-28 2018-01-04 京セラ株式会社 Cogeneration system, control device, and control method

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JP2004006217A (en) * 2002-04-12 2004-01-08 Sekisui Chem Co Ltd Fuel cell cogeneration system
JP2005044713A (en) * 2003-07-25 2005-02-17 Matsushita Electric Ind Co Ltd Cogeneration system and its operating method
WO2007052633A1 (en) * 2005-10-31 2007-05-10 Kyocera Corporation Fuel cell system
JP2007123032A (en) * 2005-10-27 2007-05-17 Toshiba Fuel Cell Power Systems Corp Fuel cell power generation system and its operation method
JP2010062044A (en) * 2008-09-04 2010-03-18 Ebara Corp Fuel cell system
JP2010086917A (en) * 2008-10-02 2010-04-15 Ebara Corp Fuel cell system

Patent Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP2004006217A (en) * 2002-04-12 2004-01-08 Sekisui Chem Co Ltd Fuel cell cogeneration system
JP2005044713A (en) * 2003-07-25 2005-02-17 Matsushita Electric Ind Co Ltd Cogeneration system and its operating method
JP2007123032A (en) * 2005-10-27 2007-05-17 Toshiba Fuel Cell Power Systems Corp Fuel cell power generation system and its operation method
WO2007052633A1 (en) * 2005-10-31 2007-05-10 Kyocera Corporation Fuel cell system
JP2010062044A (en) * 2008-09-04 2010-03-18 Ebara Corp Fuel cell system
JP2010086917A (en) * 2008-10-02 2010-04-15 Ebara Corp Fuel cell system

Cited By (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
WO2018003890A1 (en) * 2016-06-28 2018-01-04 京セラ株式会社 Cogeneration system, control device, and control method

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