March 2019 - FCH JU PEMFC development workshop

March 2019 - FCH JU PEMFC development workshop, Marseille, France - Silvain Buche, JMFC


The INSPIRE team hosted a workshop in Marseille on 5th and 6th March 2019, combining several FCH JU H2020 projects focused on PEM fuel cell components together for poster sessions, forums and project presentations. The following projects were represented:

           - CRESCENDO: projects
- Fit-4-AMANDA:


  • The forums brought some extremely interesting interactions and discussion points:
    • Ultra-low loadings, <0.1 mg/cm2 Pt, require catalyst activities to be very high but are not necessarily practical solutions for the fuel cell transport industry.
    • Ultra-low loadings are a real risk with respect to both high current density performance and durability. The requirements for automotive OEMs to implement voltage limit controls will increase system complexity and cost.
    • Ultra-low loadings are also extremely sensitive to pollutants which currently exist from refuelling stations but also from air pollution.
    • Recycling of all components now needs to be taken into account when looking at life cycle rather than just individual component costs.
    • The current membrane developments are significant and could have real advantages for electrolysis if these advancements could be translated to the PEM electrolysis industry.
    • The future of bipolar plates for transport applications is likely with stamped metal plates thanks to their superior electrical conductivity, mechanical properties, ease of mass manufacture and the smaller cell pitch. However, for the current heavy-duty applications, such as range extenders for delivery vans or stationary use, the option of moulded graphite plates represents a far lower durability risk within the short term.
    • The team also highlighted that, while automotive drive cycles were well accepted by the industry, heavy duty transport drive cycles were not widely available.
    • Volume manufacturing technology development was highlighted as an area which needs further attention, especially the development of appropriate (in-line) QC methods.
      Workshop attendees

Overall this was a very successful workshop which enabled FCH JU projects with common interests to share their successes and best practises and create new links which will benefit the industry throughout. The INSPIRE team want to thank all that attended and took such an active part in the discussions.