(1)Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
METI intends to start new project from August 2002 under cooperation with Ministry of the Environment and Minitry of Land,Infrastructure and Transport, which CO2 recovered from thermal power station or factry is put into undergrounf coal layer at isolated condition and supply the recovered methane to FC, generated by reaction brtween the input CO2 and hydrogen in the coal layer. Actually this recycle process of resources adopted by this project is to convert once the recovered methane to methanol and the methanol is supplied to FC. RHE reason why the coal layer is selected to store CO2 is to make use of characteristics of coal easily adsorbing CO2. They will decide contractors through Research Institute of Innovative Tecnology for the Earth (RITE) who will be leader of this project. Development term is until 2004 and they are to study to cooperate with the USA and/or Europe.
(Denki Shinbun July 17, 2002)
(2)Agency of NAtural Resources and Energy, METI
ANRE decided the organization and the outline of project to carry out demonstration test of PEFC system on July 17, 2002. This is 3 years project starting from 2002 and the budget of 2.5 billion yen is to be assigned this year. The test will be carried out separately for FCV and stationary PEFC. And JEVA (Japan Electric Vehicle Association ) will take initiative for demonstration test of FCV and infrastructure for hydrogen supply including driving test under participation of 5 automobile fabricators and Engineering Advancement Association of Japan will take initiative for installation of hydrogen station and the operation and production test of liquid hydrogen. Each of 5hydrogen stations to be installed is to be used different process and 14 companies will participate for this project, in case oil wholesale companies are counted such as Sin Nippon oil Corporation, Cosmo Oil Co., Ltd.,
Iwatani International Corporation and Showa Shell Sekiyu K.K.
On the other hand, NEF (New Energy Foundation ) will take initiative for stationary PEFC and 11 organizations will participate, including Tokyo Electric Power Company, Japan Gas Association, Sin Nippon Oil Corporation.,Ebara Corporation, Sekisui Chemical Co., Ltd., Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., and Sankyo Electric Co., Ltd.
And they will verify the operation charastristic corresponding to 12 FC cogeneration systems installed in differrent weather conditions.
(Yomiuri Shinbun, Asahi Shinbun, Mainichi Shinbun, Nikkan Sangyo Sinbun, Sankei Shinbun,Deniki Shinbun July 18 2002)
ANRE intends to require budget of 1 billion yen or more in 2003, to start safety evaluation project on FC to study regulations and deregulations. Concrete subjects concerning FCV are inspection items on hydrogen fuel tank regulated by High Pressure Gas Safety Act, necessity for inspetion duty to remove tank from hydrogen fuel FCV imported from foreign countries and reexamination of technical standard for hydrogen value. Concerning hydrogen station, concrete subjects are necessity for permanent station safety manager, limitation for charge rate intransportation tank and notice duty charge place into tank track regulated by the High Pressure Gas Safety Act. ANRE will entrusut researches to private companies or public organizations, based on data for safety concerning the above subjects in order to reexamine the regulations.
(The Daily Automotive News August 9, 2002)
MLIT has an intention to approve FCV to put on market by Toyota Motor Corporation and Honda Motor Co., Ltd. within this year, by making technical guide line equivalent to law and special approving system by the minister for driving FCV which is not objective in current regulation. They will promote FCV by making the guideline in a short time and decreasing limitations of special approving system by the minister as small as possible.
(The Daily Automotive News July 31, 2002)
MLIT will degulatelimitation for hydrogen storage capacity and installation of hydrogen stand regulated by the Building Standards Act.Three will be revised partly in 2004 after they will confirm the safety. Combustible gas including hydrogen is limited the storage quantity equivalent to 10 FCV in semi industrial area and 2 FCV in commercial area by the Building Standards Act and hydrogen supply facility is not approved to install in commercial and residential area by the current law.
( Denki Shinbun August 7, 2002 )
(4)Fire and Disaster Management Agency, Ministry of Public Management, Home Affairs, Post and Telecommunications
FDMA will revise ordinances of the Fire Service Act in the latter half of 2003, to be able to install hydrogen supply facility within gasoline station. They will add new provision on hydrogen supply facility to the technical standards of the Fire Services Act and change the Act to be able to construct hydrogen supply station within gasoline station, although the regulation prohibits to install any other construction in gasoline station without to charge gasoline.
( Denki Shinbun August 7, 2002 )
2. Policy and Activity in Local Government
Tokyo Metropolitan Government, MLIT, METI nad Toyota group decided to start demonstration test of FC bus in Tokyo Water Front City. They will use ydrogen supply station installed for verification test of FC system by METI in Ariake, Koto-ward. They have studied to run FC hybrid bus "FCHV-BUS 1" now under development by Toyota group as actual regular routed operated by Tokyo Metropoitan Government.
( Mainichi Shimbun, The Daily Automotive News August 2, 2002 )
3. Development and Demonstrarion of MCFC
(1)Tokyo Motor Corporation
Toyota adopts MCFC in October 2002. This MCFC is fabricated by IHI and integrated with micro gas turbine put on market by Toyota Turbine and Systems and installed as hybrid cogeneration facility in Environmental Center of the company. MCFC is 300kW class made by IHI and micro gas turbine is 50kW and total efficiency is 80%, incliding electricity, steam and hot water. IHI wants to reduce cost down to 400,000 \/kW as early stage as possible.
( Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun August 5, 2002 )
(2)JFCC( Japan Fine Ceramics Center )
JFCC announced that Takeshita Fukui, senior researcher of JFCC and others succeeded to improve durability of cathode electrode, whoch is 4 times in comparison with NiO and 2 times in comparison with NiO simply mixed with magnesium er magne-ferrite. This has been done as dhare research work entrusted by MCFC Research Association.
NiO has been used for cathode of MCFC in the past. Low production cost process has been established for 1u class applied for commercial use, which is tape casted NiO powder and sintered in reducing atmosphere and oxidized at insitu of fuel cell stack. However, NiO is dissolved in case of high pressure operation. The countermeasure was to mix simply magnesium or magne-ferrite with NiO powder in raw material stage improvement of cathode durability. Although the durability has been impoved by this mixture and large area cell made, it was not enough attain practical life.
Important point of development this time is to combine Ni mechanically with magne-ferrite and surface of Ni particle is covered by fine powder of magne-ferrite. Next stage of this development is to make paractical area electrode and verify the durability.
( Nikkei Kogyo Shimbun August 6, 2002 )
4. Research and Development of SOFC
(1)National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology
Hibino, Senior reseacher,Ceramics Department, AIST and Professor Sano and his group, Environment Research, Nagoya University obtained high current density of 0.8 W/cu under operating temparature of 600 by SOFC using thin Ceria membrane electrolyte. This Ceria is what a part of cerium is replaced by gadolinium and has a superior conductivity. However, this material is reduced by fuel gas and it is generally considered as impossible to use this for SOFC. However,they found out that reducing power is not strage at 600 and they can reduce electric resistance down to 0.4
¶/cu@by reducing the thickness of oxide down to 30 Êm. On the other hand, they used nickel ceria oxide for anode, added 3 % Ruthenium in weight as catalyst and increased reaction speed by highly disapersing and controlling the structure. Carbon formation did not happen in anode when hydrocarbon fuels have been used, such as methane, ethane and propane and confirmed satbility for long time.
( Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun July 19, 2002 )
(2)Tokyo Electric Power Company
TEPCO decided to proceed with research on SOFC material parformance including evaluation of durability as middle or long term research as they positioned SOFC as alternative technology for thermal power generation. Onthe other hand, they are to participate " verification test of stationary PEFC" project newly planned by METI.They intend to realize "best mix of electric power" by storing these various power generation technology. They will finish research on commercialization of PAFC by the end of 2002 because applied market is limited to hospital and hotel and target cost reduction hasnot been attained.
They positioned SOFC as major technology in various fuel cells because SOFC can realize large scale power plant of 100,000-200,000 kW class and attain high efficiency and clean power generation by commbination of gas turbine. They will make effort for research of cell component for the time being, such as crack by heatcycle and evaluation of degradation by long time test and they have a target to realize high power generation efficiency of 60% in the future.
( The Chemical Daily July 31, 2002 )
(3) Electric Power Development Co., Ltd.
Electric Power Development Co., Ltd. (EPDC) has begun the trial operations onthe pilot plant of EAGLE (technical development of gasification of caol) and aim to establish the coal gas generating technology (oxygen blown) and gas clean up technology which produce the coal gas, adoptable as fuel of FC, at its Wakamatsu General Management Office. The stage of phase two on which FC system will be combined with the pilot plant is originally scheduled to start from 2007, after the completion of EAGLE project, but the schedule will be considered to make earlier because of advancement of gasificaiton development earlier than schedule. SOFC which is considered to be combined with the pilot plant has been developed in the simplified module with improvements of performance by EPDC. Adoption of MCFC will be also investigated depending on the development of SOFC. EPDC's flexible correspondence on the project has been noticed. If IGFC ( Integrated coal Gasification with FC ) become realistic, the efficiency of generating power will be about 60% and the amount of CO2 exhaust will be able to cut by 30% compared with conventional coal fired power station.
( The Chemical Daily August 9, 2002 )
5. Research, Development, Demonstration, and Market Entry of PEFC
(1) Osaka Municipal Technicak Research Institute
Osaka Municipal Technicak Research Institute announced on July 29, 2002 that they had successfully developed cathode electrode for PEFC based on activated carbon. Fluorine organic acid ( tri-fuluoro-methane sulfonic acid) is adsorbed on the fine hole of activated carbon as catalyst and mixed with carbon black which can transfer electron. And then, electrodes were made with them, which loss in voltage reduces by 20% compared with the existing method using carbon black. This may depend on oxygen ions moving smoothly due to organic acid. The activated carbon has fine holes of afew nm on its surface and these holes can keep more fine platinum particles and more and make catalvtic performance effectively. The activated carbon had not been adopted because oxygen ions and hydrogen ions hardly reached the depth of holes. The price of activated carbon with platinum is 2500yen/gram and is about one fourth compared with carbon black. Its durability is considered almost the same as existing ones and the techniques will be transferred to catalyst markets and aim to put them in practical use.
( Asahi Shinbun, Sankei Shinbun, Nikkei Sangyo Shinbun, Nikkan Kogyo Shinbun June 30, 2002 )
(2) Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.
Hiroshima Research & Development Center of MHI will start the field test of the first unit of PEFC from fall of 2003. After that, they will manufacture a few hundred of units and plan to set the network on them which were bought by house owners, and works and laboratories and make real time management systems for collecting data such as power outputs, catalytic efficiencies and troubles. They will start the commercial productions in 2007 in the earliest after modification made depending on these collected data. They will manufacture products of 2 or 3 types, from 1kW to 10kW ,in a lot of several hundreds at Kannon Workshop of Horoshima works in 2004, of which are using natural gas and order petroleum fuels. Futhermore, they will suppose year 2005 as semi-commercial year and will plan to manage sold PEFC connected with telephone line. Yoshida Hirosawa, general manager of said Center, told that durability is the most important items for the diffusion. We would really like to put them in market after we will have studied on the replacement cycles of catalysts andaothers, based on the data taken from the actual operations. the selling price of mass products aimed at 500,000-600,000 yen/kW, after deducting the governmentsubsidies. MHI considers that FC is one of main products in the future and promotes its developments and commercialization.
( Chugoku Shinbun August 6, 2002 )
(3) FJ composite
FJ composite in Numazu City has succeeded in making separator materials for PEFC at low price and began sample shipments to car markets, home electric appliance manufacturers and house makers. This is anew material which is molded carbon powder with thermosetting resin, The price is about one tenth; that si about 3,00 yen per sheet of A4 size andis expected to become lower to 200yen by mass production. Still more, this material has good characteristics in its counductivity and gas tightness and is reported that the conductivity is 5
Ê¶¥cm and regarding gas tightness lealage rate is 10-8 cm3/sec.
( Nikkan Kogyo Shinbun August 8, 2002 )
(4) Yunitika Ltd.
Yunitika has developed the new technologies to produce the separator for PEFC at low cost. Controlling the baking temparature made baking hours a half of that of conventional method and this led to reduce consumption of energy and also the production cost is expected to be cut to one third. What they have developed is a baking method transforming phenol reisin into amorphous carbon. This makes processing hours short by controllong the temperature which moves nitrogen and hydrogen components outof phenol resin. Baking hours a separator of post card size require 50 hrs., it is a half of conventional methods. the molding method of phenol has been applied the injection molding, suitable for mass production. These developments have led to reduce the total production cost of separator to one third of that of conventional ones.
( Nikkei Sangyo Shimbun Auguat 9, 2002 )
6. Development and Commercialization Plan of Home-use PEFC Cogeneration System
(1)Osaka Gas Co., Ltd.
Osaka Gas announced on July 16, 2002 that they concluded a non-exclusive license agreement supplying the natural gas reforming technologies for home use PEFC with Ebara Ballard and BGS ( Ballard Generation Systems ). It was also agreed that Ebara BAllard would manufacture PEFC for home use cogeneration systems and these four companies including Ebara Corporations would promote the developments. On the contract, Osaka Gas would disclose their production techniques for fuel reformer and the operation methods and Ebara Ballard and BGS would be able to manufacture and sell independently PEFC built in Osaka Gas'sreformer at domestic and international market. Itwould planned that Ebara Ballard would develop home use PEFC systems operable for 24hours and Osaka Gas would operate and evaluate the systems and aim to make commercial systems in 2005. BGS and Ebara Corporation would support the system developments from the side of production techniques.
( Nihon Keizai Shimbun, Sankei Shinbun, Denki Shinbun, Nikkei Sangyo Shinbun,Nihon Kogyo Shinbun July 17, 2002 )
Hokkaido Gas will develop the home use cegeneration systems with natural gas reforming type of PEFC. They will utilize exhaust gas for hot water supplier and room heating and is going to stuy on the effective heat utilization under the cooperation with Hokkaido University and intend to make them commercialized within 3-5 years.
( Nikkei Sangyo Shinbun August 2, 2002)
7. The Front of FCV
Japan Electric Vehicle Association announced on July 17, 2002 that they would start the cooperrative demondtration tests of FCV which would have participants of total five car manufactures; Three Japanese manufactures, Toyota, Honda and Nissan and two oversea manufactures, Daimler-Chrysler and GM. This is subsidized project for three years from 2002 to 2004 by Ministry of Economics,Trade and Industry. The main purpose of the tasks would investigate the effects of energy saving on various type of hydrogen stations and the effects on environment and also collecting data concerned safety. The garages and showrooms which would be used as basements if respective manufactures' FCV will be constructed in Yokohama by February 2003.
( Chugnichi Shinbun, Tokyo Shinbun, The Daily News June 18, 2002 )
American Honda Motors, the local corporae of Honda in USA, announced that their FCV had official certificate as a FCV from American Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB). Receiving the certificate will make Honda their scheule earlier tahn their original one and will put FCVs on market within this year. A FCV certified this time was a FCX which had been test driving in USA and loaded on Ballard made PEFC with fuel of 156 liters compressed hydrogen gas (350 atms), based on the style of mini-van with enough space for 4 adults. The maximum speed is 150 km/h with 355 km driving range. The price has not been decided yet but around 30 FCVs will be put on sale with lease method during 2-3 years.
(Nihon Keizai Shinbun, Yomiuri Sinbun, Asahi Shinbun, Mainichi Shinbun, Sankei Shinbun July 25, 2002)
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. announced that they will put about20 of their FCVs on sale with lease method in 2003, two years earlie than original sales schedule of 2005. The president Carlos GHosn said on the press conference of the presentation of Fairlady Z on July 30, 2002 that their charged engineers had confirmed the company's technical level on FCV igetting enough high and selection of parts makers also well advanced. So, they would set the sales shedule earlier. The present plan shows that a FCV is a sport utility vehicle (SUV), loaded Ballard's PEFC with fuel of pure hydrogen. Theprice is not decided yet.
( Nihon Keizai Shinbun, Asahi Shinbun, Yomiuri Shinbun, Mainichi Shinbun, Nikkei Sangyo Shinbun July 31, 2002 )
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. developed FCV technology which can start within a short time even under minus 20 , by incorporatig heater in FC system and plans to test its durability and realize FCV for cold-climate region. NISSAN intends to appea their advancement in comparison with competitors, by making more practical FCV which can drive at cold-climate region such as Hokkaido.
( The Daily Automotive News August 5, 2002)
8. Fuel for FC and Hydrogen Technologies includin Production, Storage, Transportation and Supply
(1)Tokyo University of Science
Professor Yasukazu Saito et al, Tokyo University of Science, established "Hydrogen Energy Research Laboratory" a college origin venture firm which is charged in research and development of hydrogen sorage and transportation, in the University. For developing the decalin supply system at gasoline station, a research consortium which is participated by Nippon Oil Corporation, Nippon Steel Corporation, home electoric appliance manufactures and municipal corporations is to be established, and the firm and Foundation for Advancement of Science and Technology will operate the consortium. The technology is developed and patented by Professor Saito, which can store and Discharge hydrogen by converting repeatedlly between decalin and naphthalene with special catalyst. The system development is planned to generate decalin at gas station as hydrogen storage, utilizing by-product hydrogen in steel and iron works, distribute it to home as decalin and recycle it as naphthalene after hydrogen discharge at home.
( Nikkan Kogyo Shinbun July 16, 2002 )
(2)Nippon Steel Corporation and others
Nippon Steel Corporation, cooperating with NKK Corporation, Teikoku OilCo., Ltd> and others, starts development of full scale eficient hydrigen productiontechnology to increase hydrogen production by mixing hydrogen yielded from by-product gas and hydrogen generared from methane in COG fron steel mill. They plan to increase hydrogen supply capacity by separating hydrogen and then generating hydrogen from remaining gas which contains 30% methane. For the COG reforming Technology, the process development is proceeded by using partly partial oxidation by injecting oxygen in order to improve reforming reaction efficiency and utilizing 800 waste heat of COG for reforming heat. By this technology, more than 10 billion cubic meter hydrogen cen be secured from by-product gas in domestic steel companies.
( Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun July 19, 2002 )
(3)Liqueied Petroleum Gas Center
Liquefied Petroleum Gas Center, as one of 2002 iscal year activity plans, starts new project "Research, Development and Demonstration to varifi Base Technologies to Commercialize DME" scheduled for 3years, entrusted from Ministry of Economy,Trade and Industry. And also the Center starts test operation of 1 kW class home use system in a link of "LP Gas PEFC System Development" entrusted from NEDO. Also the Center proceeds with development of new caralyst which has more than 1 year durability, carrying out the trial manufacturing and evaluation of sulfide and reforming catalyst.
( The Chemical Daily July 26, 2002 )
Toyota Motor group, st forth a project plan to arrange FCV hydrogen station related to the wind power business to be installed off Odaiba, Tokyo. This project is a public subscription by Tokyo Metropolitan Government and Toyota Tsusho Corporation of Toyota Motor group and Electric Power Development Co., Ltd areawarded and the electricity supply is scheduled to start from end of 2002, constructing 2sets of 850 kW wind power generations. To supply hydrogen by clean energy such as wind power is expected to i,prove the enterprise image of the group. Also Toyota has keen interest in marketing FCV at Tokai area and is seemed possibly to be side support for FCV popularization, by arranging hydrogen station in Tokai area by the group.
(Tokyo Shinbun, Chunichi Shinbun July 27, 2002)
(5)Hydrogen Station by BY-product Hydrogen
A hydrogen station of which raw material is by-product hydrogen is opeed on July 29, 2002 at Tsurumi-Ku, Yokohama City. Iwatani International Corporation constructed the high pressure hydrogen supply station and Tsurumi Soda Co., Ltd provided the area and shares hydrogen supply and the operation. Tsurumi Soda,purifying by-product hydrogen from their caustic soda production process ti more than 99.99% and loading tank at minus 70 and 200atm, delivers the hydrogen to tank of the station. Station tank,facing to public road, strages hydrogen at 250-350 atm and it is charged to FCV by the pressure difference and the dispenser is located at 10 m from public road. Charging 35 normal cubic meter hydrofen gas to one vehicle, 5 vehicles can be charged in series.
(Nikkan Kogyo Shinbun July 30 ,2002)
DME Development LLC announced on July 29 ,2002 that they will construct a pilot plant which produces 100 ton DME per day by 2003. Establishing DME direct synthesis technology by caring out 5 times continuous operation for about 3 month in maximum and gathering operation data by 2006, DME Development LLC intends to commercial plant (2,500 Ton per day class) in the future. DME Development LLC is a research and development company established by joint fund of 9 companies including NKK in February, 2002.
( Nikkei Sangyo Shinbun July 30, 2002)
(7)Kokan Drum Co.,Ltd
Kokan Drum Co., Ltd, afiliated company of NKK, promotes the development of 700 atm hydrogen storage tank, jointly with comprehensive alliance partner, Dynetech, Canada, Already they got special permission and delivered 350 atm tanks. Though the structure, the same as for 30 atm tank,is carbon fiber would on aluminium liner, seal and interface to gas charger are major development themes for 700 atm tank. this development is a part of actvities to standardize international code for high pressure gas supply aiming at FCV popularization and they plan to ask automobile manufacture fir supports.
(Nikkan Kogyo Shinbun August 9, 2002)
9. FC and Hydrogen Related Instrument
(1 )National Institute of Advanced Indudtrial Science and Technology
National Institute of Advanced Indudtrial Science and Technology (AIST) succeeded development of hydrogen gas sensor which can detect quantitatively wide range of hydrogen concentration. the sensor which is developed by Environmental Sensor Material Team of Synery Material REsearch Center (AIST), detect hydrogen concentration by thermo-electric converting material which convert heat (temperature difference) gerated from reaction of high hydrogen gas to electric voltage signal, utilizing platinum catalyst which has hifh hydrogen selectivity. The sensor worked properly without seasonal correction at the range of 60 - 180 @and could detect reproductively and quantitatively hydrogen range from 250 ppm to 10 % at 100 without mal-function. Also it is reported that they succeeded to measure 100 % hydrogen concentration utilizing the simple gas dilution equipment. The effective area of the sensor is less than 1 cm2and it could be made by thin membrane process. This is also feature. Lowercost than 100,000 yen in price, cen be expected.
( The Chemical Daily July 16, 2002, Denki Shinbun, The Daily Automotive News July 17, 2002 )
(2)Yokogawa Electeic Corporation
On July 22, 2002, Yokogawa Electric Corporation announced that they started in strument business specialized for FC. The instruments are to confirm FC ooeration and performance and used for such as evaluation of electricity generation characterristics. The first products put on market is "Impedance measuring instrument (AC method) for FC", which has been developed by combining their own technologies such as for signal generator, electric current sensor, watt meter and so on. the Charactristics of electro chemical reaction canbe sensed correctlyand promptly in the form of electric signal. In definite term, its features are to be able to detect real time cell performance variation such as voltage, current and intenal resistance corectly and to be able to monitor FC operating status snd electric generating performance in digital form.
( Nihon Kogyo Shinbun July 23, 2002)
10. Company Activity
Daido Metal Co., Ltd. developed 3 types small and light weight FC application products that are hand light, teaching aid kid and mini car, and started marketing. The FC is cylindrical portable type developed jointly with DCH Technology Inc, USA, and Daido Metal provided teh technology to coat thin platinum catalyst on the electrode uniformly. As the hydrogen is supplied from hydrogen storing alloy, the safety is excellent. The hand light is marketing for emergency power and the priceis 95,000yen. The teaching aid kid is for primary and middle school students to study the FC principle and the price is about 10,000yen. As for mini FCV for feducational facility such as science museum, 2 sets are delivered to New Energy Foundation (NEF) and the price is about 300,000 yen. Daido Metal intends to bring FC application products up as core products succeeding bearing in the future, and Hanji, present of the company stated "these products will be spread when the replacing hydrogen cylinder becomes available, as easily as dry battery is, at convenience store"
( Nikkei Sangyo Shinbun August 2, 2002)