Ceramic multi-layer systems are the key components of solid oxide cells (SOC) to be used either for power generation or energy storage. Over the last decades continuous improvement in materials, architecture and manufacturing processes have been achieved to improve performance, durability and lifetime. The advanced concept of a metal-supported SOC where the functional ceramic layers are deposited onto a mechanically stable porous metal support is the most advanced approach for mobile application as auxiliary power units (APU) having strict requirements in terms of low volume, limited weight and improved ability for rapid start-up and thermal cycling. The paper provides an overview of the metal-supported cell development at DLR where functional layers are consecutively deposited by plasma spray technology onto a metal substrate. The current status of this development including materials aspects, stack technology and electrochemical performance is reported. When operating temperature is governed mainly by the electrocatalytic properties of the functional electrode materials and thickness of the electrolyte, thin-film electrolyte opens up the opportunity of low temperature operating SOC. Recently, further research efforts have started to develop a metal-supported cell with thin-film electrolyte. Hermetic thin films have been applied through PVD technology resulting in bilayer structured coatings. Recent results of this development are also presented.
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