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EUREKA Network/Eurostars3] Development of cost-effective metal bipolar plates for solid oxide fuel cells




A Korean company specialized in manufacturing display equipment and energy component is to develop a metal bipolar plate for SOFC (solid oxide fuel cell). With its in-house metal processing, low-cost and lightweight property, metal bipolar plate can be produced in large quantities. This company is looking for a partner with metal surface coating technology that guarantees excellent oxidation resistance and high electrical conductivity under research cooperation agreement for EUREKA and EUROSTARS


The SOFC is an eco-friendly energy production device that is considered as a great technical and business value that exhibits excellent performance for reducing fine dust and carbon dioxide. The power conversion efficiency of the SOFC system is at least 40% to more than 60%. It is likely as an energy source that will alleviate concerns about power generation gaps caused by nuclear and coal power phase out since it can be operated regularly.

The development of a bipolar plates, that acts as a mechanical support (the electrical connection of each unit cell consisting of an electrolyte and an electrode, isolation of the supplied fuel and air), is absolutely necessary to produce a large-capacity stack which is used in a SOFC system.

Metal is a suitable material for bipolar plate due to its low price, mechanical strength, high electrical conductivity, high gas barrier properties, and ease of manufacture. The biggest advantage of the metal bipolar plate is that it can be easily molded and forged, making it to adjust its thickness to 1mm or less.
Metal bipolar plate has high strength, toughness, and impact resistance, that allows the bipolar plate to be manufactured thinner. However, it is vulnerable to corrosion, which can adversely affect performance and durability. Corrosion can occur in both anode and cathode during fuel cell operation.

Accordingly, a Korean display and energy component manufacturer is to develop a SOFC bipolar plate based on its manufacturing know-how. The end goal is the development of fuel cell metalworking equipment and coating device.
This company intends to apply to Eureka or Eurostars3 programme in research cooperation with European partners who possess metal coating technology(especially Chromium plating)

The deadline of EOI is until June 30, 2021 as the deadline of call is expected on Aug 31, 2021.

Partner expertise sought:

- Specific area of activity of the partner: - Type of partner sought
: Company or Research Institute

- Specific area of activity of the partner
: Metal coating technology (Especially, Cr Barrier coating tech),
SOFC bipolar plate

- Task to be performed
: Development of surface treatment technique applied
(cost-effective) metal bipolar plate consists of excellent
oxidation resistance and high electrical conductivity for Solid
Oxide Fuel Cells for mass production

Advantages & innovations:

Stainless steel-based metal bipolar plate processing technology has a relatively low production cost compared to conventional graphite and carbon polymer composites. It has high mechanical stability such as strength and impact, and is technically easy to forge, making it suitable for low-cost mass production.
Contributing to the commercialization of SOFC (solid oxide fuel cell) and the distribution ratio of hydrogen fuel cells by lowering the production cost of bipolar plate is expected.

Development Stage:

Prototype available for demonstration


Patent(s) applied for but not yet granted

Programme - Call:

Evaluation scheme: TBD


Deadline: 31/08/2021

Coordinator required: No

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Research cooperation agreement


Industrial Manufacture \ Materials \ Energy \ Renewables
INDUSTRIAL MANUFACTURING, MATERIAL AND TRANSPORT / Industrial Manufacture / Coatings / INDUSTRIAL MANUFACTURING, MATERIAL AND TRANSPORT / Industrial Manufacture / Machine Tools / INDUSTRIAL MANUFACTURING, MATERIAL AND TRANSPORT / Materials Technology / Metals and Alloys / ENERGY / Renewable Sources of Energy / Liquid biofuels
Treatment and coating of metals / Manufacture of other machine tools
ENERGY / Alternative Energy / Combined heat and power (co-generation) / INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS / Industrial Equipment and Machinery / Machine tools, other metal working equipment (excl. numeric control)


Contact Enterprise Europe Network Scotland by email at, quoting reference number RDKR20210406001