Ceramic Industry

Alfred University Researcher Works with Rochester Manufacturer on Fuel Cell Project

July 21, 2011

Olivia Graeve, associate professor of materials science and engineering at the Kazuo Inamori School of Engineering at Alfred University, is working on the development of a ceramic nanopowder that could lead to better solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs). Solid Cell Inc., which manufactures stationary and portable SOFCs for residential, commercial, and military applications at its plant in Rochester, announced it has kicked off a collaborative project with Graeve to “manufacture ceramic powders for Solid Cell’s patent-pending SOFC interconnect.”

The goal of the project is to “demonstrate the feasibility of replacing traditional ceramic powder synthesis with a low-cost process,” according to the Solid Cell announcement. The proprietary technology is reportedly expected to be able to reduce the time, energy and handling requirements of synthesis while producing a nanopowder with improved physical properties.”

Preliminary results are expected before the end of the summer. Solid Cell says it anticipates that interconnect units fabricated from the nanopowders synthesized at Alfred University could be incorporated into prototype fuel cell units for durability testing before the end of the year.

“We are excited by the opportunity to work with Solid Cell and to add value to its manufacturing process, while increasing fundamental knowledge and understanding of the underlying science,” said Matthew Hall, director of the New York State Center for Advanced Ceramic Technology and an associate professor at Alfred University. The project, he said, may be “the first of many that will leverage the world-renowned expertise of Alfred University to help Solid Cell advance and commercialize its novel solid oxide fuel cell technology.”

For more information, visit www.solidcell.com or www.alfred.edu.