The project is focused on using numerical modelling to connect the final geometry of metallic bipolar plates (BP) for fuel cells with high tolerance requirements, manufactured with a high-speed forming process where the complex shape and dynamic behaviour of the production tools must be included in a combined product and production development.
BP is a key component in proton exchange membrane fuel cells used today in e.g. vehicles. The technology has so far not had its major breakthrough due to cost reasons. BP accounts for about 80% of the total weight and 45% of the cost in a stack of up to 400 cells to achieve adequate performance
By developing digital methods for implementing new product designs through realisation of tools for the production the design process will be faster providing ability to adapt to changing conditions and quickly produce newly developed patterns for BP.
The combined area of challenges addressed i.e. tribology, numerical modelling, high speed forming process and demanding requirements in integrated product and production development. Shorter time from design to production also contributes to resilience as disturbances from e.g. tool wear and havoc can be remedied with less delay. Global competitiveness for Swedish industry can be achieved through lead in ability to quickly and at relatively low cost develop tools and produce BP in high volumes.
The market for BP is global and a lead for Swedish industry makes it possible to take large market shares for the benefit of Swedish industry in the entire supply chain to BP.