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Title: Hydrogen Production System with High Temperature Electrolysis for Nuclear Power Plant

Abstract

Steam electrolysis with solid oxide cells is one of the most promising methods for hydrogen production, which has the potential to be high efficiency. Its most parts consist of environmentally sound and common materials. Recent development of ceramics with high ionic conductivity suggests the possibility of widening the range of operating temperature with maintaining the high efficiency. Toshiba is constructing a hydrogen production system with solid oxide electrolysis cells for nuclear power plants. Tubular-type cells using YSZ (Yttria-Stabilized- Zirconia) as electrolyte showed good performance of steam electrolysis at 800 to 900 deg C. Larger electrolysis cells with present configuration are to be combined with High Temperature Reactors. The hydrogen production efficiency on the present designed system is expected around 50% at 800 to 900 deg C of operating temperature. For the Fast Reactors, 'advanced cell' with higher efficiency at lower temperature are to be introduced. (authors)

Authors:
; ; ; ; ;  [1]
  1. Toshiba Corporation, Industrial and Power Systems and Services Company, 2-4 Suehiro-cho, Tsurumi-ku, Yokohama 230-0045 (Japan)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
American Nuclear Society, 555 North Kensington Avenue, La Grange Park, IL 60526 (United States)
OSTI Identifier:
21021082
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: 2006 International congress on advances in nuclear power plants - ICAPP'06, Reno - Nevada (United States), 4-8 Jun 2006; Other Information: Country of input: France; 8 refs; Related Information: In: Proceedings of the 2006 international congress on advances in nuclear power plants - ICAPP'06, 2734 pages.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
21 SPECIFIC NUCLEAR REACTORS AND ASSOCIATED PLANTS; CERAMICS; CONFIGURATION; EFFICIENCY; ELECTROLYSIS; FAST REACTORS; HYDROGEN PRODUCTION; IONIC CONDUCTIVITY; NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS; PERFORMANCE; SOUND WAVES; STEAM; TEMPERATURE RANGE 0400-1000 K; YTTRIUM OXIDES; ZIRCONIUM OXIDES

Citation Formats

Kentaro, Matsunaga, Eiji, Hoashi, Seiji, Fujiwara, Masato, Yoshino, Taka, Ogawa, and Shigeo, Kasai. Hydrogen Production System with High Temperature Electrolysis for Nuclear Power Plant. United States: N. p., 2006. Web.
Kentaro, Matsunaga, Eiji, Hoashi, Seiji, Fujiwara, Masato, Yoshino, Taka, Ogawa, & Shigeo, Kasai. Hydrogen Production System with High Temperature Electrolysis for Nuclear Power Plant. United States.
Kentaro, Matsunaga, Eiji, Hoashi, Seiji, Fujiwara, Masato, Yoshino, Taka, Ogawa, and Shigeo, Kasai. 2006. "Hydrogen Production System with High Temperature Electrolysis for Nuclear Power Plant". United States. doi:.
@article{osti_21021082,
title = {Hydrogen Production System with High Temperature Electrolysis for Nuclear Power Plant},
author = {Kentaro, Matsunaga and Eiji, Hoashi and Seiji, Fujiwara and Masato, Yoshino and Taka, Ogawa and Shigeo, Kasai},
abstractNote = {Steam electrolysis with solid oxide cells is one of the most promising methods for hydrogen production, which has the potential to be high efficiency. Its most parts consist of environmentally sound and common materials. Recent development of ceramics with high ionic conductivity suggests the possibility of widening the range of operating temperature with maintaining the high efficiency. Toshiba is constructing a hydrogen production system with solid oxide electrolysis cells for nuclear power plants. Tubular-type cells using YSZ (Yttria-Stabilized- Zirconia) as electrolyte showed good performance of steam electrolysis at 800 to 900 deg C. Larger electrolysis cells with present configuration are to be combined with High Temperature Reactors. The hydrogen production efficiency on the present designed system is expected around 50% at 800 to 900 deg C of operating temperature. For the Fast Reactors, 'advanced cell' with higher efficiency at lower temperature are to be introduced. (authors)},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 2006,
month = 7
}

Conference:
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  • As part of the Next Generation Nuclear Plant (NGNP) project, an evaluation of a low-temperature heat-pump interface design for a nuclear-driven high-temperature electrolysis (HTE) hydrogen production plant was performed using the UniSim process analysis software. The lowtemperature interface design is intended to reduce the interface temperature between the reactor power conversion system and the hydrogen production plant by extracting process heat from the low temperature portion of the power cycle rather than from the high-temperature portion of the cycle as is done with the current Idaho National Laboratory (INL) reference design. The intent of this design change is to mitigatemore » the potential for tritium migration from the reactor core to the hydrogen plant, and reduce the potential for high temperature creep in the interface structures. The UniSim model assumed a 600 MWt Very-High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) operating at a primary system pressure of 7.0 MPa and a reactor outlet temperature of 900°C. The lowtemperature heat-pump loop is a water/steam loop that operates between 2.6 MPa and 5.0 MPa. The HTE hydrogen production loop operated at 5 MPa, with plant conditions optimized to maximize plant performance (i.e., 800°C electrolysis operating temperature, area specific resistance (ASR) = 0.4 ohm-cm2, and a current density of 0.25 amps/cm2). An air sweep gas system was used to remove oxygen from the anode side of the electrolyzer. Heat was also recovered from the hydrogen and oxygen product streams to maximize hydrogen production efficiencies. The results of the UniSim analysis showed that the low-temperature interface design was an effective heat-pump concept, transferring 31.5 MWt from the low-temperature leg of the gas turbine power cycle to the HTE process boiler, while consuming 16.0 MWe of compressor power. However, when this concept was compared with the current INL reference direct Brayton cycle design and with a modification of the reference design to simulate an indirect Brayton cycle (both with heat extracted from the high-temperature portion of the power cycle), the latter two concepts had higher overall hydrogen production rates and efficiencies compared to the low-temperature heatpump concept, but at the expense of higher interface temperatures. Therefore, the ultimate decision on the viability of the low-temperature heat-pump concept involves a tradeoff between the benefits of a lower-temperature interface between the power conversion system and the hydrogen production plant, and the reduced hydrogen production efficiency of the low-temperature heat-pump concept compared to concepts using high-temperature process heat.« less
  • A reference design for a commercial-scale high-temperature electrolysis (HTE) plant for hydrogen production was developed to provide a basis for comparing the HTE concept with other hydrogen production concepts. The reference plant design is driven by a high-temperature helium-cooled nuclear reactor coupled to a direct Brayton power cycle. The reference design reactor power is 600 MWt, with a primary system pressure of 7.0 MPa, and reactor inlet and outlet fluid temperatures of 540°C and 900°C, respectively. The electrolysis unit used to produce hydrogen includes 4,009,177 cells with a per-cell active area of 225 cm2. The optimized design for the referencemore » hydrogen production plant operates at a system pressure of 5.0 MPa, and utilizes an air-sweep system to remove the excess oxygen that is evolved on the anode (oxygen) side of the electrolyzer. The inlet air for the air-sweep system is compressed to the system operating pressure of 5.0 MPa in a four-stage compressor with intercooling. The alternating-current, AC, to direct-current, DC, conversion efficiency is 96%. The overall system thermal-to-hydrogen production efficiency (based on the lower heating value of the produced hydrogen) is 47.12% at a hydrogen production rate of 2.356 kg/s. An economic analysis of this plant was performed using the standardized H2A Analysis Methodology developed by the Department of Energy (DOE) Hydrogen Program, and using realistic financial and cost estimating assumptions. The results of the economic analysis demonstrated that the HTE hydrogen production plant driven by a high-temperature helium-cooled nuclear power plant can deliver hydrogen at a competitive cost. A cost of $3.23/kg of hydrogen was calculated assuming an internal rate of return of 10%.« less
  • The use of High Temperature Electrolysis (HTE) for the efficient production of hydrogen without the greenhouse gas emissions associated with conventional fossil-fuel hydrogen production techniques has been under investigation at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INL) for the last several years. The activities at the INL have included the development, testing and analysis of large numbers of solid oxide electrolysis cells, and the analyses of potential plant designs for large scale production of hydrogen using an advanced Very-High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) to provide the process heat and electricity to drive the electrolysis process. The results of these system analyses, usingmore » the UniSim process analysis software, have shown that the HTE process, when coupled to a VHTR capable of operating at reactor outlet temperatures of 800 °C to 950 °C, has the potential to produce the large quantities of hydrogen needed to meet future energy and transportation needs with hydrogen production efficiencies in excess of 50%. In addition, economic analyses performed on the INL reference plant design, optimized to maximize the hydrogen production rate for a 600 MWt VHTR, have shown that a large nuclear-driven HTE hydrogen production plant can to be economically competitive with conventional hydrogen production processes, particularly when the penalties associated with greenhouse gas emissions are considered. The results of this research led to the selection in 2009 of HTE as the preferred concept in the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) hydrogen technology down-selection process. However, the down-selection process, along with continued technical assessments at the INL, has resulted in a number of proposed modifications and refinements to improve the original INL reference HTE design. These modifications include changes in plant configuration, operating conditions and individual component designs. This paper describes the resulting new INL reference design and presents results of system analyses performed to optimize the design and to determine required plant performance and operating conditions.« less
  • A design for a commercial-scale high-temperature electrolysis (HTE) plant for hydrogen production has been developed. The HTE plant is powered by a high-temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) whose configuration and operating conditions are based on the latest design parameters planned for the Next Generation Nuclear Plant (NGNP). The current HTGR reference design specifies a reactor power of 600 MWt, with a primary system pressure of 7.0 MPa, and reactor inlet and outlet fluid temperatures of 322°C and 750°C, respectively. The power conversion unit will be a Rankine steam cycle with a power conversion efficiency of 40%. The reference hydrogen production plantmore » operates at a system pressure of 5.0 MPa, and utilizes a steam-sweep system to remove the excess oxygen that is evolved on the anode (oxygen) side of the electrolyzer. The overall system thermal-to-hydrogen production efficiency (based on the higher heating value of the produced hydrogen) is 40.4% at a hydrogen production rate of 1.75 kg/s and an oxygen production rate of 13.8 kg/s. An economic analysis of this plant was performed with realistic financial and cost estimating assumptions. The results of the economic analysis demonstrated that the HTE hydrogen production plant driven by a high-temperature helium-cooled nuclear power plant can deliver hydrogen at a cost of $3.67/kg of hydrogen assuming an internal rate of return, IRR, of 12% and a debt to equity ratio of 80%/20%. A second analysis shows that if the power cycle efficiency increases to 44.4%, the hydrogen production efficiency increases to 42.8% and the hydrogen and oxygen production rates are 1.85 kg/s and 14.6 kg/s respectively. At the higher power cycle efficiency and an IRR of 12% the cost of hydrogen production is $3.50/kg.« less
  • Results of a system evaluation and lifecycle cost analysis are presented for a commercial-scale high-temperature electrolysis (HTE) central hydrogen production plant. The plant design relies on grid electricity to power the electrolysis process and system components, and industrial natural gas to provide process heat. The HYSYS process analysis software was used to evaluate the reference central plant design capable of producing 50,000 kg/day of hydrogen. The HYSYS software performs mass and energy balances across all components to allow optimization of the design using a detailed process flow sheet and realistic operating conditions specified by the analyst. The lifecycle cost analysismore » was performed using the H2A analysis methodology developed by the Department of Energy (DOE) Hydrogen Program. This methodology utilizes Microsoft Excel spreadsheet analysis tools that require detailed plant performance information (obtained from HYSYS), along with financial and cost information to calculate lifecycle costs. The results of the lifecycle analyses indicate that for a 10% internal rate of return, a large central commercial-scale hydrogen production plant can produce 50,000 kg/day of hydrogen at an average cost of $2.68/kg. When the cost of carbon sequestration is taken into account, the average cost of hydrogen production increases by $0.40/kg to $3.08/kg.« less