Technical Brief

Design for Manufacturing and Assembly Cost Estimate Methodology for Transportation Fuel Cell Systems

[+] Author and Article Information
Brian D. James, Andrew B. Spisak

Strategic Analysis, Inc.,
Energy Services Division,
Wilson Boulevard 4075, Suite 200,
Arlington, VA 22203

Whitney G. Colella

Strategic Analysis, Inc.,
Energy Services Division,
Wilson Boulevard 4075, Suite 200,
Arlington, VA 22203
e-mail: wcolella@alumni.princeton.edu,

Based upon 2010 median single shift utilization of 65% for machine shops converted to 14-h two-shift work days (0.65 × 8 h/14 h) http://www.mmsonline.com/articles/see-how-you-stack-up

Cycle life is generally determined by the strength and/or abrasion resistance of the tool material and the strength and/or abrasiveness of the material the tool is processing.

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received July 19, 2012; final manuscript received August 14, 2013; published online February 19, 2014. Editor: Y. Lawrence Yao.

The United States Government retains, and by accepting the article for publication, the publisher acknowledges that the United States Government retains, a non-exclusive, paid-up, irrevocable, worldwide license to publish or reproduce the published form of this work, or allow others to do so, for United States government purposes.

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 136(2), 024503 (Feb 19, 2014) (6 pages) Paper No: MANU-12-1215; doi: 10.1115/1.4025624 History: Received July 19, 2012; Revised August 14, 2013

This article presents a design for manufacturing and assembly (DFMA) methodology for estimating the capital costs of new, emerging energy technologies built at varying rates of mass-production. The methodology consists of four major steps: (1) System Conceptual Design, (2) System Physical Design, (3) Cost Modeling, and (4) Continuous Improvement to Reduce Cost. The article describes the application of this methodology to a specific case study of automotive fuel cell systems (FCSs). Because any alternative automotive technology must compete with the very mature and widespread gasoline internal combustion engine, it is vitally important to identify the performance, design, and manufacturing conditions needed to reduce automotive FCS costs. Thus, a DFMA-style analysis is applied to the cost to manufacture a polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) FCS for cars, at varying rates of production (between 1,000 and 500,000 vehicles per year). The results of this kind of DFMA-style analysis can be used to elucidate key cost drivers at varying levels of production for new energy technologies.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Jacobson, M. Z., Colella, W. G., and Golden, D. M., 2005, “Cleaning the Air and Improving Health With Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles,” Science, 308(5730), pp. 1901–1905. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Colella, W. G., Jacobson, M. Z., and Golden, D. M., 2005, “Switching to a U.S. Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle Fleet: The Resultant Change in Energy Use, Emissions, and Global Warming Gases,” J. Power Sources, 150, pp. 150–181. [CrossRef]
Blake, G. D., 2010, “Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Development for Transportation and Stationary Applications: Overview & Status Update,” 2010 Advanced Energy Conference.
“Japan Railway on Track to Test Pollution-Free Fuel Cell,” New York Times, April 14th, 2006.
Colella, W. G., 2000, “Market Prospects, Design Features, and Performance of a Fuel Cell Powered Scooter,” J. Power Sources, 86, pp. 255–260. [CrossRef]
Colella, W. G., 2010, “Designing Energy Supply Chains Based on Hydrogen,” Climate Change Science and Policy, S. H.Schneider, A.Rosencranz, and M. D.Mastrandrea, eds., 2nd ed., Island Press, Washington, D.C., pp. 456–466.
Boothroyd, G., Dewhurst, P., and Knight, W., 2011, Product Design for Manufacture and Assembly, 3rd ed., CRC Press and Taylor & Francis Group LLC, Boca Raton, FL.
James, B. D., and Spisak, A. B., 2012, “Mass Production Cost Estimation of Direct H2 PEM Fuel Cell Systems for Transportation Applications: 2012 Update,” report by Strategic Analysis, Inc., under Award Number DE-EE0005236 for the US Department of Energy, 18 Oct. 2012.
James, B. D., Moton, J. M., Colella, W. G., 2013, “Fuel Cell Transportation Cost Analysis,” U.S. DOE's 2013 Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meeting (AMR) for the Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program, Arlington, VA, May 13–17.
Ross, S., Westerfield, R., Jaffe, J., Jordan, B. D., 2010, Corporate Finance: Core Principles and Application, McGraw-Hill Inc., New York.


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

System design diagram for 80 kWe automobile system showing mass flows, pressures, and temperatures



Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In