Heat Recovery Innovations

Minimizing size, maximizing heat capture in a fully custom solution

A solid oxide fuel cell OEM needed a custom-designed heat exchanger for their solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) that could recover as much energy as possible to drive system efficiency. HRI provided a customized design that reduced the entire hotbox by 30%.

  • Integrated burner assembly
  • All unique size and shape requirements met
reduction in hotbox size
0 %
operating pressure
0 bara
operating temperature
0 ºC


The client’s SOFC called for a nontraditional, customized, high-performance heat exchanger.  

When the client designed a new iteration of their SOFC, It was clear a standard heat exchanger would not offer enough performance or volume reduction. The specs would require a custom design with unique features, including an integrated burner housing, a smaller hot box, 700ºC cold side temperature rise for maximum energy recovery, and technology to accommodate oval fuel stack connection points.

Project Specifications

920°C Design temperature

Smaller hot box for maximum energy savings.

1.2 bara

Gas to Gas

The Solution

Spec-to-build partnership yielded
optimal performance in markedly smaller,
tailored configuration.

HRI worked shoulder-to-shoulder with the client’s design team to address all requirements, and devised a system that not only met all aspects of the design, it improved performance substantially. HRI’s custom solution was 70% smaller, using integrated components.

The final heat exchanger was subjected to a battery of tests, assuring pressure drop, thermal performance, quality and design before shipping.

  • Shoulder to shoulder collaboration.
  • Customized oval components.
  • Assembly constructed of 310SS for high temperature resistance and durability.
  • Integrated burner design for 30% smaller space.
  • Substantial testing before shipping.

The Results

HRI’s heat exchanger exceeded requirements in both design and performance for the solid oxide fuel cell OEM, inspiring further improvements.

The close working partnership between teams from HRI and the client resulted in a design that featured integrated components, shrunk the hot box size by 30%, and yielded higher performance than specified, with no quality issues.

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Employee Name, Title

The Future

HRI made a number of recommendations to the solid oxide fuel cell OEM for next-generation improvements that would provide even better energy recovery and performance.

Our client embarked on a design revision that extracted more performance from its SOFC, and continued working with HRI on heat exchangers for a number of new products.

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