Robust adaptive control for a hybrid solid oxide fuel cell system

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Title: Robust adaptive control for a hybrid solid oxide fuel cell system
Author: Snyder, Steven
Abstract: Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) are electrochemical energy conversion devices. They offer a number of advantages beyond those of most other fuel cells due to their high operating temperature (800-1000 &deg C), such as internal reforming, heat as a byproduct, and faster reaction kinetics without precious metal catalysts. Mitigating fuel starvation and improving load-following capabilities of SOFC systems are conflicting control objectives. However, this can be resolved by the hybridization of the system with an energy storage device, such as an ultra-capacitor. In this thesis, a steady-state property of the SOFC is combined with an input-shaping method in order to address the issue of fuel starvation. Simultaneously, an overall adaptive system control strategy is employed to manage the energy sharing between the elements as well as to maintain state-of-charge of the energy storage device. The adaptive control method is robust to errors in the fuel cell's fuel supply system and guarantees that the fuel cell current and ultra-capacitor state-of-charge approach their target values and remain uniformly, ultimately bounded about these target values. Parameter saturation is employed to guarantee boundedness of the parameters. The controller is validated through hardware-in-the-loop experiments as well as computer simulations.
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Date: 2011-05

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