• Novel modular stack design for high PREssure PEM water elecTrolyZer tEchnoLogy with wide operation range and reduced cost (PRETZEL)

    Green hydrogen produced by electrolysis might become a key energy carrier for the implementation of renewable energy as a cross-sectional connection between the energy sector, industry and mobility. Proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolysis is the preferred technology for this purpose, yet large facilities can hardly achieve FCH-JU key performance indicators (KPI) in terms of cost, efficiency, lifetime and operability. Consequently, a game changer in the technology is necessary.

    PRETZEL consortium will develop a 25 kW PEM electrolyzer system based on a patented innovative cell concept that is potentially capable of reaching 100 bar differential pressure. The electrolyzer will dynamically operate between 4 and 6 A cm-2 and 90 °C achieving an unprecedented efficiency of 70%. This performance will be maintained for more than 2000 h of operation. Moreover, the capital cost of stack components will be largely reduced by the use of non-precious metal coatings and advanced ceramic aerogel catalyst supports. Likewise, the system balance of plant (BoP) will be optimized for cost reduction and reliability.

    The high-pressure hydrogen generator will become part of the product portfolio of a German manufacturer but at the end of PRETZEL, this company will establish a supply business partnership and R&D collaboration with France, Spain, Greece and Romania, strengthening and consolidating cooperation among EU states with contrasting economies. Lastly, the hydrogen produced by the PEM electrolyzer will not be wasted, but rather used for feeding the fuel cell test stations in one of the partner’s laboratory.

    Project site: http://pretzel-electrolyzer.eu

    Funding Scheme : Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking (FCH 2 JU)

    Starting Date : 1/1/2018, Duration : 3years

    Budget : 1.999.088 € (CERTH: 216.250 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Kalliopi-Maria Papazisi

  • Development of new electrode materials and understanding of degradation mechanisms on Solid Oxide High Temperature Electrolysis Cells (SElySOs)

    The high temperature Solid Oxide Electrolysis (SOEC) technology has a huge potential for future mass production of hydrogen and shows great dynamics to become commercially competitive against other electrolysis technologies (AEL, PEMEL), which are better established but more expensive and less efficient. On the downside, up to now SOECs are less mature and performance plus durability are currently the most important issues that need to be tackled, while the technological progress is still below the typically accepted standard requirements. Indicatively, the latest studies on State-of-the-Art (SoA) cells with Ni/YSZ and LSM as cathode and anode electrodes, respectively, show that the performance decreases about 2-5% after 1000h of operation for the H2O electrolysis reaction, whereas for the co-electrolysis process the situation is even worse and the technology level is much more behind the commercialization thresholds.

    In this respect, SElySOs is taking advantage of the opportunity for a 4-years duration project and focuses on understanding of the degradation and lifetime fundamentals on both of the SOEC electrodes, for minimization of their degradation and improvement of their performance and stability mainly under H2O electrolysis and in a certain extent under H2O/CO2 co-electrolysis conditions. Specifically, the main efforts will be addressed on the study of both water and O2 electrodes, where there will be investigation on: (i) Modified SoA Ni-based cermets, (ii) Alternative perovskite-type materials, (iii) Thorough investigation on the O2 electrode, where new more efficient O2 evolving electrodes are going to be examined and proposed. An additional strong point of the proposed project is the development of a theoretical model for description of the performance and degradation of the SOEC fuel electrode. Overall, SElySOs adopts a holistic approach for coping with SOECs degradation and performance, having a strong orientation on the market requirements.

    Project site: http://selysos.iceht.forth.gr/

    Funding Scheme : Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking (FCH 2 JU)

    Starting Date : 2/11/2015, Duration : 4 years

    Budget : 2.939.655 € (CERTH: 450.000 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Stella Balomenou

  • Scale up of Electrochemically Promoted Catalytic Hydrogenation of CO2 forfuel production (CO2 TO FUELS)

    The objective of the project is the experimental investigation of the conversion of CO2, captured from the flue gases of power stations, to light hydrocarbons, using electrochemically promoted monolithic reactors containing thin porous Ru films, or employing fixed bed semi-pilot scale reactors utilizing nanodispersed catalysts based on Ru supported on ionically conducting carriers which act as operando promoter donors.

    Funding Scheme : RESEARCH – CREATE – INNOVATE

    Starting Date : 4/6/2018, Duration : 3 years

    Budget : 1.000.000 € (CERTH: 260.000 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Stella Balomenou

  • Optimization of Sea Water Electrodialysis for “Athomer” Nasal Spray Production (OPTATHOMER)

    Τhe aim of the current proposal is the optimization (automation, production increase, troubleshooting) of the electrodialysis process used by «Φαρμακοσμέτικ-Διαφάρμ» for the preparation of the nasal spray solution “ATHOMER” from seawater. The company’s industrial research effort will be augmented by the Physical Chemistry Lab, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (optimization of electrodes and membranes) and the Laboratory of Process Systems Design and Implementation, Chemical Process & Energy Resources Institute (process automation and control).

    Funding Scheme : RESEARCH – CREATE – INNOVATE

    Starting Date : 4/6/2018, Duration : 3 years

    Budget : 670.000 € (CERTH: 230.000 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Dimitrios Tsiplakides

  • Future Lithium-ion technology: Development of advanced materials & Lithium-ion cells of space batteries

    The main technical objective of this project is twofold as it refers to the long-term cycling of high-energy density Li-ion cells. More specifically the critical targets are:

    • - (iii) to develop cells with more than 200 Wh/kg and
    • - (iv) (ii) to be able to withstand more than 300 cycles with less than 10% of loss in terms of its energy density.

    These two targets are challenging to be met simultaneously since many advanced materials with high specific capacity that have been proposed lack of stability over extensive cycling.

    Funding Scheme : European Space Agency (ESA)

    Starting Date : 3/3/2017, Duration : 2 years

    Budget : 340.000 € (CERTH: 80.000 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Dimitrios Tsiplakides

  • Innovative High Energy Density Li-ion batteries operating at low temperature (HELT-Bat)

    During previous ESA Contracts, CERTH together with Democritus University of Thrace and ESA developed a novel electrochemical Li-ion secondary cell that exhibits high energy density (>200 Wh/kg) and operates efficiently at subzero temperatures (retaining more than 70% of the capacity down to -40°C). The invention is within Agency’s interest since it tackles important issues on the low temperature energy storage, i.e. at conditions which may be encountered in future exploration missions and thus leads to storage systems with less complexity and more efficiency. Therefore, it can be used to future space applications, e.g. future Landers and surface probes or package missions.

    The general goal of HELT-Bat is to improve our technology and further prepare the appropriate steps toward an industrialization phase. In detail the specific goals are:

    • • to improve cell weaknesses by R&D actions,
    • • to increase TRL by manufacturing pouch prototype cells and performing tests (including safety) and
    • • to challenge threats by calculating the battery cost of an industrial prototype and by designing the appropriate production processes and tools.

    Funding Scheme : European Space Agency (ESA) - Innovation Triangle Initiative (ITI)

    Starting Date : 2/5/2018, Duration : 2 years

    Budget : 175.000 € (CERTH: 58.550 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Stella Balomenou

  • Development of a closed loop regenerative high temperature PEM fuel cell system

    The use of fuel cells in aerospace applications is, up to date, very limited, future missions, however, will see more involvement of fuel cells in space, and this will include European Space Agency (ESA) activities as well. Reversible or Regenerative Fuel Cells (RFCS) have already been considered as potential energy storage devices for several space mission scenarios, even for Earth satellite missions. Two fields of application have been identified as suitable for the potential use of RFCS: the field of telecommunication for the replacement of batteries, and planetary exploration where RFCS would fill the gap between batteries and nuclear power sources. Current RFCS technology separates the electrolyzer cell and the fuel cell. A complete, closed-loop system based on regenerative fuel cells combined, for instance, with solar panels, would provide autonomous electrical power supply on-demand, which is of great interest and importance for space applications. Such systems are stand-alone systems, where the renewable energy source powers the system.

    The objective of this activity is the development of a Regenerative High Temperature PEM Fuel Cell Stack combined with a High-Pressure PEM Water Electrolysis System for space applications. The objectives of the activity are:

    • • Evaluation and testing of materials for both High Temperature PEM Fuel Cell (HTPEMFC) and High Pressure PEM Electrolyser (HPPEMELY) with emphasis on long life stability and performance.
    • Design both a minimum 1 kW HTPEMFC and HPPEMELY stacks for use with hydrogen and oxygen intended for closed loop operation.
    • Design a closed loop Regenerative -PEMFC system.
    • Manufacture a compact closed loop Regenerative-PEMFC system elegant breadboard.
    • • The compact closed loop 1 kW Regenerative-PEMFC system shall be life tested according to a profile given by the European Space Agency.
    • • Construction of a 3 kW HTPEMFC and a 5 kW HPPEMELY stacks. A 3 kW system will allow accurate estimation of system weight and thermal / water management strongly influencing the efficiency of the system.

    Evaluation of a performance and efficiency of a system downscaled to 300W.

    Funding Scheme : European Space Agency (ESA)

    Starting Date : 14/3/2014, Duration : 5 years

    Budget : 1.000.000 € (CERTH: 250.000 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Stella Balomenou

  • Regenerative fuel cells for Mars exploration

    This activity focuses on a regenerative solid oxide fuel cell system, RSOFCS, that use carbon dioxide (CO2) as main medium. CO2 is available directly in the Martian atmosphere. These cells when charging absorb electric energy and electrolyse CO2 into carbon monoxide (CO) and oxygen (O2). These two reactant gasses are then stored. When the cells discharge, CO and O2 are recombined back into CO2 with production of electric energy. These cells, which operate at high temperature, are fully reversible (i.e. the cell works both as electrolyser and as fuel cell) unlike low temperature cells that have, for reasons of catalysis and efficiency, a dedicated electrolyser and a dedicated fuel cell stack.

    The objectives of the activity are to:

    • Design, develop and test a small scale demonstrator of reactant generation (pre-pressurization and electrolysis) and storage system.
    • Design and develop a complete 500 W RSOFC system breadboard with a storage capacity of 10 kWh for use on Mars landers, operated solely from CO2.

    Test the RSOFC system breadboard according to the test specification given by ESA. The test plan aims not only at verifying the compliance with requirements established early in the activity, but also at characterizing the performance and operational aspects of the cells.

    Funding Scheme : European Space Agency (ESA)

    Starting Date : 1/9/2013, Duration : 5 years

    Budget : 650.000 € (CERTH: 292.500 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Stella Balomenou

  • Systematic Design and Testing of Advanced Rotating Packed Bed Processes and Phase-Change Solvents for Intensified Post-Combustion CO2 Capture

    ROLINCAP will search, identify and test novel phase-change solvents which can be utilized in specifically designed packed bed and rotating packed bed processes for post-combustion CO2 capture. These are high potential technologies, still in their infancy, with initial evidence pointing to very low regeneration energy requirements and considerable reduction of the equipment size, several times compared to conventional processes. These goals will be approached through a holistic decision making framework. The tools proposed in ROLINCAP will cover a vast space of solvent and process options going far beyond the capabilities of existing simulators. ROLINCAP follows a radically new path by proposing one predictive modelling framework for both physical and chemical equilibrium, for a wide range of phase behaviours and of solvent structures. The envisaged thermodynamic model will be used for the design of phase-change solvents, beyond the very few previously identified options. Advanced process design approaches will be used for the development of highly intensified packed and rotating packed bed processes. The sustainability of both the new solvents and processes will be investigated considering holistic approaches. Selected solvent and process options will be tested in pilot plants. New software for the thermodynamics of solvent-based CO2 capture systems will be developed for the gPROMS process simulator.

    Project site: Rolincap-project

    Funding Scheme : H2020-LCE-2016-2017/H2020-LCE-2016-RES-CCS-RIA

    Starting Date : 1/10/2016, Duration : 3 years

    Budget : 3.212.588€ (PSDI: 666.375 €)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Athanasios Papadopoulos

    Consortium coordinator : Prof. Panagiotis Seferlis

  • Enhancing Programmability and boosting Performance Portability for Exascale Computing Systems

    The vision of EXA2PRO is to develop a programming environment that will enable the productive deployment of highly parallel applications in exascale computing systems. EXA2PRO programming environment will integrate tools that will address significant exascale challenges. It will support a wide range of scientific applications, provide tools for improving source code quality, enable efficient exploitation of exascale systems’ heterogeneity and integrate tools for data and memory management optimization. Additionally, it will provide various fault-tolerance mechanisms, both user-exposed and at runtime system level and performance monitoring features. EXA2PRO will be evaluated using 4 use cases from 4 different domains, which will be deployed in JUELICH supercomputing center. The use cases will leverage the EXA2PRO tool-chain and we expect:

    – Increased applications performance based on EXA2PRO optimization tools (data and memory management)

    – Efficient exploitation of heterogeneity by the applications that will allow the evaluation of more complex problems.

    – Identification of trade-offs between design qualities (source code maintainability / reusability) and run-time constraints (performance / energy consumption).

    – Evaluation of various fault-tolerance mechanisms for applications with different characteristics. EXA2PRO outcome is expected to have major impact in

    1. the scientific and industrial community that focuses on application deployment in supercomputing centers: EXA2PRO environment will allow efficient application deployment with reduced effort.
    2. on application developers of exascale application: EXA2PRO will provide tools for improving source code maintainability/reusability, which will allow application evaluation with reduced developers’ effort.
    3. on the scientific community and the industry relevant to the EXA2PRO use cases. At least two of the EXA2PRO use cases will have significant impact to the CO2 capture and to the Supercapacitors industry.

    Project site: https://exa2pro.eu/

    Funding Scheme : FETHPC-02-2017 Transition to Exascale Computing

    Starting Date : 1/05/2018, Duration : 3 years

    Budget : 3.475.223€ (PSDI: 171.812€)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Athanasios Papadopoulos

  • Systematic Design and Techno-Economic Evaluation of Advanced Heat-to-Cooling Systems for Upgrading the Qatari Cooling Infrastructure (COOLUP)

    COOLUP aims to develop computer-aided design methods and technologies tailored to the design of absorption refrigeration (ABR) schemes which are required to enable efficient economic, operating and sustainable high-performance district cooling plants in Qatar. In our project we will target the development of innovative direct-fired absorption systems and equipment enabling significant capital and operating cost reductions of the current DC systems in Qatar, with structural and operating characteristics of optimum performance. Furthermore, we will target the development of highly efficient hybrid cooling systems, i.e., integrating advanced ABR with the current electric-driven-vapor-compression infrastructure, by implementing research methods for optimum thermo-economic plant-wide design and operation.

    Funding Scheme : QNRF

    Starting Date : 1/05/2018, Duration : 3 years

    Budget : 551.056€ (PSDI: 186.516€)

    Scientific coordinator : Dr. Athanasios Papadopoulos

  • Design and experimental testing of innovative processes for CO2 capture and its use in industrial production of carbonate salt nano-particles (ΝANOCAP)

    NANOCAP aims at CO2 capture and utilization for industrial production of high value products such as nano-particles of precipitated calcium carbonate (CaCO3) and basic carbon magnesium (hydromagnisite 4MgCO3 Mg(OH)22Ο). The raw material production processes (CaO, MgO and CO2) for such nano-particles are of high intensity in CO2 (e.g. for MgO the CO2 emissions are in the order of 250.000 ton/yr, whereas for CaO in the order of 150.000 ton/yr). This goal will be approached thorough the development of an innovative chemical CO2 capture process of low energy requirements and use of CO2 in an equally innovative rotating bed (RB) process for the production of carbonate salt nanoparticles. The proposed CO2 capture unit enables energetic reductions in the order of 50% compared to conventional capture systems, due to the use of new generation solvents operating at very low regeneration temperatures. The RB process enables a 10-fold reduction of the process equipment size compared to conventional nano-particle production reactors. The two processes will be investigated through pilot plants, followed by a technoeconomic scale-up and installation evaluation.

    Project site: http://nanocap.cperi.certh.gr/

    Funding Scheme : RESEARCH – CREATE – INNOVATE

    Starting Date : 28/06/2018, Duration : 3 years

    Budget : 869.655€ (PSDI: 300.165€)

    Scientific coordinator : Prof. Panagiotis Seferlis

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About PSDI

PSDI laboratory mainly targets focused research and industrial projects in the area of modeling, design, optimization and control of chemical and energy conversion processes. Also has developed expertise in the design, construction and automation of chemical and power production pilot plants through numerous industrial projects.

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