Volume 6: Innovative Solutions for Energy Transitions: Part V

Carbon Footprint and Economic Analysis of Fuel Cell Assisted Road Transport Refrigeration System Bhargav Pandya*, Vikrant Venkataraman , Ahmad El-Kharouf , Robert Steinberger-Wilckens



The present study examines the feasibility of Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) assisted Vapor Absorption Refrigeration System (VARS) for refrigerated transport to replace the conventional TRU, where the heat generated from SOFC can be used to run the VARS. The study investigates and compares the GHG emissions from SOFC assisted VARS, diesel, and natural gas (NG) engine powered TRU, and cryogenic transport refrigeration systems. The operational and production related emissions were considered here to find out the total GHG emissions from the above-mentioned systems. Hydrogen fueled SOFC was considered in this work, and four different hydrogen (H2) production methods (solar based electrolysis, windbased electrolysis, biomass gasification, and NG reforming) were studied to calculate the hydrogen production related emissions. The analysis was then applied to systems for chilled and frozen products over a 10-hour vehicle operation. Finally, to select an optimum system configuration, both environmental and economic aspects were be considered. The mass intensity of the various fuels to obtain the required amount of refrigeration load in the different systems was calculated. The result showed that the considered novel SOFC-VARS emitted considerably lower amounts of GHG (50- 75 % reduction) compared to diesel and natural gas (NG) fueled TRUs, and cryogenic transport refrigeration systems.

Keywords Sustainable Road Transport Refrigeration, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC), Absorption Refrigeration

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