Nissan to power its facilities with the SOFC technology

Nissan SOFC Japan
Nissan to power its facilities with the SOFC technology

The Japanese carmaker is currently testing the SOFC technology powered by bioethanol for stationary use. Large-scale deployment is scheduled for 2030.

In 2016, Nissan became the world’s first car manufacturer to integrate a Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) for mobility. The fuel cell ran on bioethanol, which was simply converted into hydrogen using a reformer. The company, an ally of the Renault group, has no plans to go any further in the automotive sector, but is exploring the generator route.

Tests have begun at the Tochigi plant in Japan. The stationary electricity generation system will be powered by bioethanol produced from Sorghum, jointly developed with Binex. Why such a plant? Well it turns out that sorghum absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere during its growth process, contributing to carbon neutrality. Moreover, it can be grown in both cold and hot regions.

According to Nissan, the efficiency of the SOFC is 70%, compared to 60% for membrane cells. And it is investing in new-generation cells to improve the system.

The manufacturer’s aim is to fully electrify plant equipment by 2050 through innovative production technologies and reduced energy consumption. In order to achieve carbon neutrality, all the electricity used will be produced from renewable energy sources or generated by on-site fuel cells using alternative fuels.

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Article written by Laurent Meillaud and translated by Mariem Ben Tili

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About the author

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Laurent Meillaud

Freelance automotive journalist and consultant, author as well, focused on technologies and new trends for more than 30 years, convinced that hydrogen is one of the energies for the future.

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