CORE project

Project name: Research and development of an innovative corrosion resistant coating for bipolar plates for energy conversion devices

The project runs from January 2021 until December 2023.


The main objective of the project is to develop ground-breaking coatings for cost-effective and high-performance bipolar plates for fuel cells and electrolysers. An innovative approach based on polymer composite materials with rationalized particles distribution is proposed, defining the following tasks:

  • fabricate polymeric-based coatings with high conductivity (≥ 100 S cm-1) and low interfacial contact resistance (fuel cell < 10 mΩ cm-2; electrolyser < 20 mΩ cm-2);
  • optimize the bipolar plate design via flow field simulation;
  • achieve suitable performance in real environment for fuel cell and/or electrolyser;
  • cost benefits compared to the current commercially available solution

The CORE project focuses on the fabrication and validation of coatings for bipolar plates, a key components of every stack used in electrochemical processes. The project has a multidisciplinary approach, involving material science, electrochemistry, chemical and corrosion engineering. If proven successful, the proposed approach can be easily up scaled and has the potential to quickly become an industrial solution for the fabrication of bipolar plates.

The essence of the project is related to the development of advanced polymer-based coatings for bipolar plates (BPP) with the aim of improving stability and reducing the costs compared to the current state-of-the-art. The research strategy adopted in CORE is based on the project activities split in different work packages (WPs).

  • The 1st WP will be dedicated to the development and optimization of the polymeric coating.
  • In the 2nd WP, the performance of the produced coatings is going to be characterized: initial focus will be set on the achievement of the required conductivity and interfacial resistance (ex-situ measurements); subsequently, the tests will focus also on in-situ testing in Fuel Cell/Electrolyser configuration.
  • The 3rd WP will look into different modelling aspects, including a techno-economic analysis and the flow field simulation to optimize the distribution of reactants in the electrochemical cell.
  • The 4th WP is dedicated to project management dissemination, project activities and planning.