Located on Hawaiian Electric Company property in downtown Honolulu, this 4,000 square feet facility was dedicated in April 2003. The test facility currently houses eight test stands for testing of single cells from 50 to 600 cm2 and small stacks (up to 5 kW). One of the smaller test stations was designed and built for high speed hardware-in-the-loop (HiL) testing to characterize dynamic performance of small fuel cell systems for vehicle applications (Figure 1).

Furthermore, the HiSERF has a host of supporting equipment including a 100 cm2 segmented cell for performance uniformity measurements (Figure 2), on-site hydrogen generation and storage, extensive safety systems, on-line high resolution gas analysis (Figure 3), a multiple configuration hydrogen flow recirculation test bed (Figure 4), in-house innovative electrochemical test equipment (Figure 5), fuel cell materials characterization equipment (Figures 6, 7, and 8), and a tracer-based system to assess the transport of reactants and products in fuel cells (Figure 9). Capabilities allow long-term life testing and cell performance characterization over a wide range of operating conditions, including hydrogen or reformate fuel, air or oxygen, and temperatures up to 100°C. The test stands employ active thermal and water management systems allowing precise control and characterization of these functions.

 


Figure 1: Hardware-in-the-loop test station with unmanned aerial vehicle fuel cell system.

 

Figure 2: Segmented cell.

 

Figure 3: Gas chromatograph and gas chromatograph/mass spectrograph.

 

Figure 4: Multiple configuration hydrogen flow recirculation test bed.

 

Figure 5: Multi-channel electrochemical impedance spectroscopy analyzer.

 

Figure 6: Test bed for fuel cell system filters.

 

Figure 7: Rotating ring/disc electrode (RRDE) system.

 

Figure 8: Membrane conductivity cell.

 

Figure 9: Tracer system and syringe tracer injector.