Molten Carbonate Fuel Cell Combined Heat, Hydrogen and Power System: Feedstock Analysis

Yousif M. Hamad, Tarek A. Hamad, Abdulhakim A. Agll, Kevin B. Martin, Mathew Thomas, Sushrut G. Bapat, John W. Sheffield


Biogas is an untapped potential in regards to an alternative energy source. This immediately available resource will allow countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption, and reliance on fossil fuels. This energy source is created by anaerobic digestion of feedstock. Sources for feedstock include organic and inorganic waste, agricultural waste, animal by-products, and industrial waste. All of these sources of biogas are a renewable energy source. Specifically a fuel cell can utilize the methane present in biogas using integrated heat, power, and hydrogen systems. A study was performed concerning energy flow and resource availability to ascertain the type and source of feedstock to run a fuel cell system unceasingly while maintaining maximum capacity. After completion of this study and an estimation of locally available fuel, the FuelCell Energy 1500 unit (a molten carbonate fuel cell) was chosen to be used on campus. This particular fuel cell will provide electric power, thermal energy to heat the anaerobic digester, hydrogen for transportation, auxiliary power to the campus, and myriad possibilities for more applications. In conclusion, from the resource assessment study,
a FuelCell Energy DFC1500TM unit was selected for which the local resources can provide 91% of the fuel requirements.


Molten carbonate; Tri-generation; Feedstock; Hydrogen; Fuel cell

Full Text:



Adhikari, S., & Fernando, S. (2005). Hydrogen separation from synthesis gas. ASAE Annu Int Meeting.
Agll, A. A., Hamad, Y. M., Hamad, T. A., Thomas, M., Bapat, S., Martin, K. B., & Sheffield, J. W. (2013). Study of a molten carbonate fuel cell combined heat, hydrogen and power system: Energy analysis. App Thermal Eng., 59, 634-638.
Appels, L, Lauwers, J, Degrve, J, Helsen, L, Lievens, B, Willems, K, …, Dewill, R. (2011). Anaerobic digestion in global bio-energy production: Potential and research challenges. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Rev, 15, 4295-4301.
Braun, R. J. (2010). Techno-economic optimal design of solid oxide fuel cell systems for micro-combined heat and Power applications in the US. J Fuel Cell Sci Technol., 7(3), 0310181-15.
Ghezel-Ayagh, H., McInerney, J., Venkataraman, R., Farooque, M., & Sanderson, R. (2011). Development of direct carbonate fuel cell systems for achieving ultrahigh efficiency. J Fuel Cell Sci Tech, 8(3), 031011.
Hamad, T. A., Agll, A. A., Hamad, Y. M., Bapat, S., Thomas M, Martin, K. B., & Sheffield, J. W. (2013). Study of a molten carbonate fuel cell combined heat, hydrogen and power system: End-use application. Case Studies in Thermal Engineering, 1, 45-50.
Holm-Nielsen, J. B., Al Seadi, T., & Oleskowicz-Popiel, P. (2009). The future of anaerobic digestion and biogas utilization. Bioresource Technol, 100, 5478-5484.
Iacovidou, E., Ohandja, D., Gronow, J., & Voulvoulis, N. (2012). The household use of food waste disposal units as a waste management option: A review. Critical Rev in Environmental Sci and Technol, 42, 1485-1508.
Krishna, R. (2012). Adsorptive separation of CO 2/CH 4/CO gas mixtures at high pressures. Microporous and Mesoporous Materials, 156, 217-223.
Locher, C., Meyer, C., & Steinmetz, H. (2012). Operating experiences with a molten carbonate fuel cell at stuttgart-möhringen wastewater treatment plant. Water Sci Technol, 65(5), 789-794.
Miao, Z., Shastri, Y., Grift, T. E., Hansen, A. C., & Ting, K. C. (2011). Lignocellulosic biomass feedstock supply logistic analysis. The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers Annual International Meeting, 7, 5440-5460.
Owens, J. M., & Chynoweth, D. P. (1993). Biochemical methane potential of municipal solid waste (MSW) components. Water Sci Technol, 27, 1-14.
Pecha, B., Chambers, E., Levengood, C., Bair, J., Liaw, S., Leachman, J., …, Ha, S. (2013). Novel concept for the conversion of wheat straw into hydrogen, heat, and power: A preliminary design for the conditions of Washington State University. Int J Hydrogen Energy, 38, 4967-4974.
Rivarolo, M., Bogarin, J., Magistri, L., & Massardo, A. F. (2012). Time-dependent optimization of a large size hydrogen generation plant using “spilled” water at itaipu 14 GW hydraulic plant. Int J Hydrogen Energy, 37, 5434-5443.
Salminen, E., & Rintala, J. (2002). Anaerobic digestion of organic solid poultry slaughterhouse waste: A review. Bioresource Technol, 83, 13-26.
Spencer, J. D., Moton, J. M., Gibbons, W. T., Gluesenkamp, K., Ahmed, I. I., Taverner, A. M., …, Jackson, G. S. (2013). Design of a combined heat, hydrogen, and power plant from university campus waste streams. Int J Hydrogen Energy, 38, 4889-4900.
Ward, A. J., Hobbs, P. J., Holliman, P. J., & Jones, D. L. (2008). Optimisation of the anaerobic digestion of agricultural resources. Bioresource Technol, 99, 7928-7940.
Weiland, P. (2010). Biogas production: Current state and perspectives. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol, 85, 849-860.
Yu, M., Muy, S., Quader, F., Bonifacio, A., Varghese, R., Clerigo, E., …, Schoenung, J. M. (2013). Combined Hydrogen, Heat and Power (CHHP) pilot plant design. Int J Hydrogen Energy, 3812, 4881-4888.




  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c)

Share us to:   


If you have already registered in Journal A and plan to submit article(s) to Journal B, please click the CATEGORIES, or JOURNALS A-Z on the right side of the "HOME".

We only use three mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases:;;

 Articles published in Energy Science and Technology are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC-BY).


Address: 9375 Rue de Roissy Brossard, Québec, J4X 3A1, Canada 
Telephone: 1-514-558 6138 
Website: Http:// Http://;

Copyright © 2010 Canadian Research & Development Centre of Sciences and Cultures