Heat Recovery Innovations

For a solid oxide fuel cell, 4 heat exchangers in one

Our customer needed a heat exchanger that could handle the complex requirements of their small solid oxide fuel cell. HRI’s four-in-one heat exchanger assembly was the answer.

heat exchangers in 1
/ 1580°F operating temperature
0 °C
operating pressure
0 barg


Solid oxide fuel cell by the customer had multiple heat transfer requirements and design points

Our customer was designing a small solid oxide fuel cell that required a complex heat exchanger assembly to handle all of its heat transfer requirements. The goal was one integrated unit that met all the different design points of each heat exchanger, while fitting within the volume allowed.

Project Specifications

860°C / 1580°F

Compact, integrated design integrating 4 heat exchanges into one stack

0.35 barg

Gas to Gas / Gas to Fuel / Gas to Water

The Solution

Multi-phase design process, plenty of feedback, optimal configuration

HRI’s multi-phase design process entailed plenty of feedback from the customer to achieve the optimal configuration. HRI developed a design that integrated 4 of HRI’s refold heat exchanger cores within the exhaust flow path. It was presented to the customer in three different height options. The customer chose the medium height configuration, as it met the allowable space requirement with a low system pressure drop.

Leak tests and heat transfer tests were conducted on each of the four cores to ensure they met performance requirements. HRI also simulated the boiler conditions to ensure the final product produced the required amount of steam.

  • Multi-phase design process with extensive customer feedback
  • Constructed of super-nickel alloys and stainless steels
  • Design integrated four refold cores within the exhaust flow path
  • Testing entailed leak tests, transfer tests, and simulated boiler conditions

The Results

Smooth transition from engineering to concept to production and a positive outcome

When the customer integrated the heat exchanger designs into their solid oxide fuel cell test systems, the results were outstanding. The entire system achieved the level of performance they had hoped for, and they found no quality issues with HRI’s equipment. The customer reported that they were not only impressed with the transition from engineering to concept to production, they truly enjoyed the process of working with the HRI team.

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