Setting the course for a hydrogen-based energy supply
Fuel cells and hydrogen have been a focus of research at EnBW for many years. EnBW and Bosch are collaborating in a pilot project at the Stuttgart-Feuerbach heating plant operated under the responsibility of EnBW Contracting GmbH. Together we are testing our Bosch solid oxide fuel cell system.
The Stuttgart-Feuerbach heating plant has been operated and maintained since 1988 by EnBW Contracting GmbH, a full subsidiary of EnBW. The facility is equipped with three boilers and provides the Bosch manufacturing location in Feuerbach with an uninterrupted heat supply for process and space heating.
Our Bosch SOFC system (solid oxide fuel cell) is being tested to cover the site’s own electricity needs and preheat the required additional water, collecting detailed information about robustness, durability and efficiency as well as the requirements and processes involved in planning, installation and operation over a period of three years. This provides us with important insights for future series units and their optimal areas of application.
SOFC system as a building block for the energy transition
As a decentralized power generator, the SOFC system is flexible and can be used directly at the place of consumption in the future. Highly efficient, low-noise and low-emission, the systems today run on natural gas, making use of the existing infrastructure. As a future prospect, the systems can run directly on hydrogen for power and heat generation without any carbon emissions. The high electrical efficiency of 60 percent promises a wide range of applications with future potential.
Digital twin for system monitoring
A virtual copy of the fuel cell ensures transparency in system monitoring: the digital twin. The service and maintenance staff can use it to access data at any time and control the SOFC system in real time. This allows the contracting team of EnBW to always have an overview of the entire setup into which the SOFC system is integrated – even remotely. All operating data can be displayed and processed live via a secure internet connection.
Together with EnBW, we are preparing the use of the fuel cell systems in a future hydrogen economy with this practical test of our SOFC system.
Overview of our pilot application at a glance
Gaining insights into robustness, durability and efficiency of fuel cell systems, preparing the application in a future hydrogen economy.
Area of application
Heating plant. Covering its own electricity needs and preheating the required additional water.
Stuttgart-Feuerbach heating plant. Since 1992, EnBW has been supplying the Bosch facility with heat in the form of steam.
- installed SOFC units
- kW electrical energy (nominal)
- kW thermal energy
- percent electrical efficiency
- percent overall efficiency
- percent coverage of on-site electricity needs
The Bosch SOFC system is currently in the pilot phase. All technical specifications given are development objectives and refer to the beginning of life.