Research Project

INN-BALANCE: Innovative cost improvements for balance of plant components of automotive PEMFC systems


European Project

Start Date


End Date


Project Code


Project illustration


Project Description

The aim of INN-BALANCE is to develop a novel and integrated development platform for developing advanced Balance of Plant components in current fuel cell based vehicles, in order to improve their efficiency and reliability, reducing costs and presenting a stable supply chain to the European car manufacturers and system integrators. Accordingly, INN-BALANCE technical objectives are (i) to develop highly efficient and reliable fuel cell BoP components; (ii) to reduce costs of current market products in fuel cell systems; (iii) to achieve high technology readiness levels (TRL7 or higher) in all the tackled developments; and (iv) to improve and tailor development tools for design, modelling and testing innovative components in fuel cell based vehicles. To this end, a European Consortium composed by major automotive companies, consulting groups, research institutes and universities was established. INN-BALANCE will be focused on four main general topics; first of all on new components developments, addressing the latest changes and trends in fuel cells vehicles technology, from new air turbo-compressor, anode recirculation/injection module and advanced control/diagnosis devices to new concepts of thermal management and anti-freeze units based on standard automotive components; secondly, on the vehicle integration and validation of the components in a TRL7 platform placed at a well-known car manufacturing platform; thirdly, providing innovative and cost optimized manufacturing processes especially developed for automotive BoP components; finally, on the results dissemination and exploitation, new technology broadcasting and public awareness of new, low-cost and reliable clean energy solutions in Europe bringing at the same time highly qualified new job opportunities.

Fundación Ayesa, Spain (coordinator)
Brose Fahrzeugteile GmbH & Co., Germany
Volvo Personvagnar AB, Sweden
PowerCell Sweden AB, Sweden
Institut de Robòtica i Informàtica Industrial -UPC-, Spain
Deutsche Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt EV -DLR-, Germany
Steinbeis-Europa-Zentrum in the Steinbeis Innovation gGmbH, Germany
Celeroton AG, Switzerland

Project Publications

Journal Publications

  • M.G. Carignano, V. Roda, R. Costa Castelló, L. Valiño, A. Lozano and F. Barreras. Assessment of energy management in a fuel cell/battery hybrid vehicle. IEEE Access, 7(1): 16110-16122, 2019.

    Open/Close abstract Abstract Info Info pdf PDF
  • J.A. Luna, E. Usai, A.P. Husar and M. Serra. Enhancing the efficiency and lifetime of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell using nonlinear model predictive control with nonlinear observation. IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics, 64(8): 6649-6659, 2017.

    Open/Close abstract Abstract Info Info pdf PDF

Conference Publications

  • J.A. Luna and R. Costa Castelló. Chattering free high order sliding mode observer for estimation of liquid water fraction in a proton exchange membrane fuel cell, 2018 European Control Conference, 2018, Cyprus, pp. 1226-1231.

    Open/Close abstract Abstract Info Info pdf PDF
  • R. Costa Castelló and S. Strahl. Temperature control of open-cathode PEM fuel cells, 20th IFAC World Congress, 2017, Toulouse, France, Vol 50 of IFAC Papers Online, pp. 11088-11093, Elsevier.

    Open/Close abstract Abstract Info Info pdf PDF
  • R. Costa Castelló and J.A. Luna. Observación de la fracción de agua líquida en pilas de combustible tipo PEM de cátodo abierto, XXXVIII Jornadas de Automática, 2017, Gijón, pp. 108-114, CEA.

    Open/Close abstract Abstract Info Info pdf PDF