The solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) belongs to the group of high-temperature fuel cells whose operating temperatures range between 650 °C and 1,000 °C. The ion exchanger is a solid, extremely thin electrolyte made of oxide ceramics. The catalyst is made of nickel.
SO fuel cells generate electricity, like all other fuel cells. At the same time, the heat output of the SO fuel cell, whose operating temperature is 800 °C to 1,000 °C, can be used in combination with a heat exchanger for heating and hot water in buildings. Due to the fact that the SO fuel cell operates at a high temperature, it can work with gases of lower purity and with natural gas. Electrical power can be generated from about 0.7 kW. The power range is up to one hundred megawatts, and the efficiency is between 60% and 65%.
Since the SO fuel cell does not use precious metals and can also be operated with natural gas, it is less expensive than the PEM fuel cell. It also generates electrical and thermal energy, making it ideally suited for use in homes. In addition, the power generated by the SO fuel cell is around 10,000 kWh, a value that covers the energy consumption in houses.