AVL Balance-of-Plant testing

Component testing with a system focus

AVL balance-of-plant (BoP) testing solutions are modular and tailored test beds to emulate the real load of a fuel cell system.

AVL Balance-of-Plant testing

Fuel cell systems are based on 4 major sub-systems, the cathode-, anode-, thermal- and electric sub-system. The smooth interaction between those is the key development challenge for fuel cell system development, whereas for component suppliers the optimization of the individual component is the main target. Components like compressors, heat exchangers, coolant pumps, water separators and many more have to meet very specific requirements for the usage in a fuel cell system. The optimization of those components without an existing fuel cell system in a very early development stage requires dedicated testing environments. AVL is providing complete solutions for the development of all sub-systems including a complete set of simulation tools to accelerate the development effort.   

BoP components used in a fuel cell system have to meet specific requirements for performance, durability, material compatibility, noise emission and many more. As fuel cell technologies are evolving, components supplier are facing changing requirements. Without a complete fuel cell system the isolated component testing is a complex task to fulfill. At AVL, due to our in-house fuel cell development activities, we have a deep component know-how and system understanding, which we are translating into state-of-the-art testing solutions. With a system focus in mind and an understanding of changing boundary conditions, we design modular test solutions to cover every aspect of BoP testing needs. 

System Model

Test procedures

AVL PUMA 2TM for component testing is the operating system for every testbed and builds the data backbone between different testing environments. Test procedures can easily be exchanged, and data can be collected in a consistent format.

Emulation of real load conditions

AVL testing solutions are focusing on a system engineering approach. True load conditions are emulated with innovative equipment and testbed layouts to isolate the unit under test from irrelevant disturbances and provide reproducible results.   

Testbed safety

AVL is providing a TÜV certified safety system with every testing solution and is able to consult on hydrogen safety layouts.

Front loading

AVL’s integrated and open development platform enables an easy exchange of parameters between test environments and allow for a simulation centric development approach shortening development times and increasing the development effectiveness. 

Modular Testbed Layout


With more than two decades of fuel cell experience AVL is the right innovation partner to reach your development goals.

360° fuel cell system expertise

AVL is providing a holistic approach to fuel cell development from engineering services to simulation methodology and tools to innovative testing solutions for every aspect in the development phase and beyond to production.


With the modular test bed design you will invest into a future proof testing environment which grows with your testing demands.


At AVL we are innovating how new technologies are developed. Our complete toolchain allows to connect all testing environments seamlessly and provide a consistent parameter and data flow which supports a simulation-centric systems engineering approach.

Modular approach

AVL BoP testing solutions are modular and tailored to customer-specific R&D requirements targeting future applications in the automotive, aviation and marine industries. This modular approach delivers high flexibility to cover every aspect of the BoP development process and a high degree of upgradability for seamless adaptation to evolving R&D demands.

Solution Consultancy

With a proven track record of more than over two decades of fuel cell experience, AVL’s competence covers the entire BoP development process, from target definition through the engineering phase to turnkey solutions for a wide range of R&D requirements. Guidance along the entire process by AVL fuel cell experts leads to high-end, customer-specific BoP testbed solutions.

AVL PUMA 2™ Fuel Cell

AVL’s real-time automation system is the perfect match for the entire BoP development program. Its flexibility and compatibility allows seamless exchange of use cases and test procedures across all testing environments and offers simple interface modification for any given use case. The remarkable interplay with AVL’s proven toolchain and the given data consistency across all testing environments makes it the perfect tool to optimize and accelerate the BoP development process.

Use Cases

AVL BoP testing solutions are optimized for a wide variety of use cases, e.g. performance characterization, efficiency mapping, model verification and durability testing. This extensive portfolio, combined with AVL’s profound expertise in component and system testing, makes AVL an ideal innovation partner within the framework of BoP development.

AVL PUMA 2™ Fuel Cell

AVL PUMA 2™ Fuel Cell is our intuitive automation system for highly dynamic fuel cell system testing. It is the global industry standard for testbed automation.

Data Acquisition - AVL FEM 4

New powertrain technologies require a higher data throughput rate in real time. AVL FEM 4™ enables you to measure all raw data relevant for the characterization of the unit-under-test.

AVL Fuel Cell production testing
AVL Fuel Cell Production Testing

AVL as preferred partner for fuel cell engineering, simulation and testing is providing beyond that integrated solutions for production testing of fuel cell stacks and complete fuel cell systems. 

Fuelcell Testbed
AVL Fuel Cell System Testbed

AVL designed the integrated Fuel Cell System Testbed to provide highly efficient and accurate testing while minimizing integration efforts. Reusing our reliable and proven modules and transferring our R&D expertise and maturity into a compact solution was crucial. 

SOFC Testbed
SOFC System Test Bed

The SOFC (solid oxide fuel cell) system test bed (TB) is capable of testing units from 5 kWe (net power) up to 400 kWe (net power) under different operating scenarios.


Battery tester and emulator for research and development, testing and validation.

Reliable BoP testing
The Development Challenge for Reliable BoP Testing

The development of fuelcell systems for various applications are transitioning to a serial product development. The consequence of that is an increased focus on cost and robustness for each individual component. 

H2 Safety Services
Safety in Testbeds for FC Systems and H2ICE

New Technologies demand not just new testing methods and testing devices but also customized safety measures. 

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