Low-Cost Glass Ceramic-Matrix Composite Heat Exchanger

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East Hartford, Connecticut
Project Term:
11/06/2019 - 11/30/2022

Critical Need:

Heat exchangers are critical to efficient thermal energy exchange in a variety of applications—including electricity generation, transportation, petrochemical processing, and waste heat recovery. Heat exchangers designed to handle ultra high pressures and high temperatures simultaneously would help to facilitate more efficient and cost effective thermochemical processes. However, the successful design of such devices is expected to require heat transfer surface and fin features that are too fine for current high temperature material manufacturing processes. Durable, reliable, and cost-effective higher temperature and pressure heat exchangers that exceed current operating conditions could reduce fuel consumption, system footprint, and capital cost while boosting the performance of a variety of power generation and industrial processes.

Project Innovation + Advantages:

UTRC will develop a high temperature, high strength, low cost glass-ceramic matrix composite heat exchanger capable of a long operational life in a range of harsh environments with temperatures and pressures as high as 1100°C (2012°F) and 250 bar (3626 psi). UTRC designed its Counterflow Honeycomb Heat Exchanger (CH-HX) configuration with an oxidation-resistant material developed initially for gas turbine applications. Its core feature is a joint-free, 3D-woven assembly of webbed tubes and cylindrical shapes to reduce stress and simplify manufacturing. The CH-HX is devoid of nearly all secondary surfaces, which increases thermodynamic performance. Its light weight, reduced volume, and high temperature robustness could enable its use in applications that benefit from high-efficiency supercritical CO2 power cycles.

Potential Impact:

HITEMMP projects will enable a revolutionary new class of heat exchangers and innovative approaches to advanced manufacturing with applications for a wide range of commercial and industrial energy producers and consumers.


High performance, efficient heat exchangers would increase industrial productivity, supporting domestic industries. The developed manufacturing techniques for high temperature materials could strengthen U.S. leadership in advanced manufacturing.


More efficient electricity generation and industrial processes could significantly reduce emissions by enabling more efficient operations.


HITEMMP technologies could enable more cost-effective, efficient, and compact modular power generation systems for multiple applications.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Philseok Kim
Project Contact:
Dr. Daniel Mosher
Press and General Inquiries Email:
Project Contact Email:


University of Michigan

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