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Our SOFC system for buildings and urban quarters – highly efficient, reliable, and environmentally friendly

Bosch SOFC fuel cell system for buildings and urban quarters

Renewable energies such as photovoltaic, wind and hydroelectric power will form vital components of energy supply in the future. This is also and particularly true for buildings and urban quarters. Energy supply that is as carbon-neutral as possible should also be efficient, fail-safe, scalable and flexible. Solar power and wind power have their limitations in this regard. By their very nature, there are times when the sun doesn’t shine or the wind doesn’t blow. Yet the electricity grid of the present and the future must be resilient at all times. To ensure no supply gaps occur, we have created the Bosch SOFC fuel cell system, which represents another technological component that is a key pillar of the transformation of energy systems. Our fuel-flexible system has been designed for use with hydrogen, making the SOFC technology a pioneer in the hydrogen economy. The SOFC system can already be used with natural gas or biomethane fuel, and generates significantly lower emissions than conventional energy converters.

Producing energy flexibly

Our SOFC system can be installed wherever decentralized energy is required. This includes buildings and urban quarters, for example. A fuel cell solution is particularly well suited to this situation because it works on a decentralized basis, while also being individually scalable, and can be integrated flexibly into different systems. Our SOFC fuel cell was developed for use with hydrogen and is therefore capable of using the energy source with great efficiency. If the fuel cell operates purely with hydrogen, carbon dioxide emissions are eliminated entirely. If the hydrogen is also produced on a carbon-neutral basis (green hydrogen), this applies to the entire value chain. Our SOFC system is ready for use with natural gas or biomethane already. Up to 20 percent hydrogen can be added. This makes our SOFC system significantly lower in emissions than conventional energy converters.

Illustration: Bosch SOFC system supplying electricity to a supermarket
A 100 kW SOFC system can cover the average annual power consumption of a small local shopping mall, e.g. discount supermarket, pharmacy, and retail outlets.

With a high-performance system

The residential sector accounts for about 20 percent of international end use energy consumption (IEA, 2021). End use energy is the energy received by the consumer in the form of electricity, heat or fuel, for example. Generated from primary energy sources such as lignite, mineral oil or wind, it can be used by households once it has been converted. The increasing electrification of urban life, the expansion of e-mobility and digitalization all require an efficient, high-performance electrical power supply. In short, the global megatrend of “electrification” is causing a rise in power requirements – including in the building sector. Air source heat pumps, EV charging points and ever-increasing numbers of digital devices must be supplied with sufficient energy going forward. Fluctuations in supply and unscheduled outages are potential scenarios in the energy revolution. This is always a risk when demand is higher than the volume of energy arriving at the building.

This is where our SOFC systems come in. These powerful on-site solutions can supply entire building complexes or urban quarters with electricity and heat. This makes not only the in-building electricity infrastructure more resilient, but also the entire public grid. The Bosch SOFC system can match conventional energy generation systems such as block heating stations (and other combined heat and power (CHP) units), district heating or grid electricity in terms of efficiency and operating costs, too. The high-temperature exhaust gas produced by the electrochemical process can be used for heating or cooling, which increases the cost-effectiveness of our SOFC system significantly. This is a major advantage over other decentralized energy generation systems.

Illustration: Bosch SOFC system supplying power to a building, air-source heat pump, and electrical charging station.
Air source heat pumps, EV charging points and ever increasing numbers of digital devices need a high-performance, reliable electricity supply. The flexible and scalable Bosch fuel cell system can be adapted to the relevant power demands.

Our SOFC system – the sustainable solution for buildings and urban quarters

Buildings and urban quarters pose a very specific challenge when it comes to electricity supply. With our SOFC system we can rise to that challenge. We currently have several pilot plants in operation so as to continuously improve our product up to series ramp-up.


Bosch SOFC contact discussion at trade fair

Would you like to use the Bosch SOFC system in your infrastructure?

The Bosch SOFC system is currently in the pilot phase. All technical specifications given are development objectives and refer to the beginning of life.

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