AFC Energy, the fuel cell power company, is still on target to complete delivery of the company’s first 240kW KORE system at Air Products’ Stade facility in Germany.

The schedule remains on track for initial power production in July 2015, following successful reviews – with follow up actions on going.

The KORE construction is yet to be completed, but AFC Energy has stated it expects to hit the July 2015 start up at Stade.

Following a process hazard assessment of the KORE fuel cell module design using the Hazard and Operability (HAZOP) methodology, the KORE has passed a further independent and rigorous examination of its design safety functions. This is a significant step in the design validation of AFC Energy’s fuel cell technology and builds upon the HAZOP undertaken previously by Foster Wheeler in October 2013.

The HAZOP review was organised and moderated by leading German process engineering consultancy plantIng GmbH, with the support of AFC, the consultancy firm Efficientics and industrial gas partner Air Products plc.

It was performed in AFC Energy’s Dunsfold offices during a two-day session on 25th to 26th of March, 2015. In the HAZOP method used, the set of piping and instrumentation diagrams (P&ID) of the KORE module were examined in small sections. Each of these has a specified design intention. Parameters which describe the design intent were then evaluated systematically in order to identify deviations and evaluate their effect.

During the review, experienced process safety engineers led a multi-disciplinary engineering team in a robust examination of all safety aspects and functions of the KORE balance of plant and cartridges design. The output of this process has been a HAZOP report with clear actions and responsible parties defined to maximise process safety. These actions have now been implemented by AFC. 

A safety report, commissioned by AFC, has also confirmed that the KORE system assembly is classified as a “safe area”, i.e. there is no area within the KORE module where an explosive atmosphere may occur, i.e. an ATEX zone.

This result, in conjunction with the recent successful conclusion of the KORE HAZOP review, establishes the inherent safety of the KORE module design for use in an industrial setting.

In addition to the KORE module and associated facilities, a HAZOP has also been completed regarding the Air Products hydrogen let down station and supply pipeline to the AFC facility. Orders have been placed for all key hydrogen supply components required for connection to the KORE plant. 

The KORE module itself continues to be developed and constructed in Coventry, UK, and is on target for completion in time to allow commencement of operations at Stade in July 2015. 

In summary, the POWER-UP schedule of works continues in accordance with the schedule outlined in AFC’s RNS dated 8 December 2014, with commencement of operation still anticipated in July 2015.

Adam Bond, AFC’s Chief Executive Officer, said, “We continue to make great progress towards the successful deployment of AFC’s first KORE system in Germany in the second half of this year. The challenging target set in fast tracking the deployment timetable by 18 months, and having the KORE delivered and operational by July 2015, has to date proven deliverable and we continue to wait in anticipation of a successful demonstration of the KORE system in July.”