Project summary

The BioRobur project will develop a robust and efficient biogas reformer aimed at covering a wide span of potential applications, from fuel cells feed (both high temperature SOFC or MCFC fuel cells and low temperature PEM ones, requiring a significantly lower inlet CO concentration) up to the production of pure, PEM-grade hydrogen.

There is an increasing amount of biogas streams within Europe. The conversion of this continuously available feedstock can produce a steady amount of renewable hydrogen. The current available catalysts and reactor systems degrade rapidly in time due to carbon formation on the catalyst and reactor and heat exchanger walls. The state of the art conversion of these carbon streams consists of converting the gas stream into a methane rich feed which is upgraded by a cleaning step before it is reformed to hydrogen. Such an upgrading step requires expensive capital and lowers the efficiency of the process. The direct reforming of biogas will reduce the costs and increase the well-to-wheel efficiency of producing renewable hydrogen.

Overall project objectives / Scope of Work

Scope of work comprises research and technological development activities on materials, catalysts and processes for chemical conversion, as well as their integration and prototyping in an efficient, thermally optimized system. The project should focus on hydrogen production by direct biogas reforming (not from purified biomethane). To reform this gas stream identifying suitable catalytic systems is needed, so to that over time lower susceptibility to degradation due to carbonaceous material fouling or sulphur poisoning is achieved. Additionally to enhanced catalytic and reactor systems, improvement of control strategies are needed for independent and robust operation. The control strategies should ensure the operation independent of feedstock composition variations in time. The control strategies and processes layout should avoid carbon deposition formation.