Manufacturing system planning, robots and sensors for electrolyzer factory
In order to make the automated electrolyzer factory a reality, the project partners are initially building a state-of-the-art production line. Every section will then be modularly adjusted and expanded so that the individual processes are better interlinked and automated than before. In the process, the scientists will have to clarify a whole series of unanswered questions, such as: Which robot topology is best suited to stacking? How should a robot pick up the components and what is the maximum speed at which it can be accelerated without damaging the sensitive components? Which optical sensors should be integrated into the system for quality assurance? Which manufacturing technologies will enable electrolyzer production to be scaled up? What should a fully automated electrolyzer factory look like and how should it be built?
The research team aims to have the answers to these and many more questions by March 31, 2025. This is the end date for the research project “Industrialization of PEM Electrolyzer Production” (PEP.IN), which has received more than EUR 20 million of funding from the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). In addition to Fraunhofer IPA, the following organizations are also involved in the joint project: the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety and Energy Technology UMSICHT, MAN Energy Solutions SE, H-TEC Systems GmbH, Audi AG, VAF GmbH, the hydrogen and fuel cell center ZBT GmbH and the Jülich GmbH research center. PEP.IN is part of the “H2Giga” lead project, one of three hydrogen lead projects of the BMBF making a key contribution to the implementation of the National Hydrogen Strategy.