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Fuel cell integral bundle assembly including ceramic open end seal and vertical and horizontal thermal expansion control

United States Patent

April 24, 2012
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
U.S. Department of Energy - Visit the Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Technology Transfer & Intellectual Property Website
A plurality of integral bundle assemblies contain a top portion with an inlet fuel plenum and a bottom portion containing a base support, the base supports a dense, ceramic air exhaust manifold having four supporting legs, the manifold is below and connects to air feed tubes located in a recuperator zone, the air feed tubes passing into the center of inverted, tubular, elongated, hollow electrically connected solid oxide fuel cells having an open end above a combustion zone into which the air feed tubes pass and a closed end near the inlet fuel plenum, where the open end of the fuel cells rest upon and within a separate combination ceramic seal and bundle support contained in a ceramic support casting, where at least one flexible cushion ceramic band seal located between the recuperator and fuel cells protects and controls horizontal thermal expansion, and where the fuel cells operate in the fuel cell mode and where the base support and bottom ceramic air exhaust manifolds carry from 85% to all of the weight of the generator.
Zafred; Paolo R. (Murrysville, PA), Gillett; James E. (Greensburg, PA)
Siemens Energy, Inc. (Orlando, FL)
12/ 543,718
August 19, 2009
GOVERNMENT CONTRACT The Government of the United States of America has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-FC26-05NT42613 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy.