FuelCell Energy power plant for Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana

Connecticut-based FuelCell Energy has announced the sale of a 300 kW Direct FuelCell power plant to improve the availability of reliable, clean electricity for Barksdale Air Force Base (AFB) in Louisiana.

The Direct FuelCell® power plant was purchased by Concurrent Technologies Corporation (CTC), under contract with the US Air Force Advanced Power Technology Office (APTO). CTC will provide research, design, development, testing, demonstration and support for the 300 kW molten carbonate fuel cell system at Barksdale AFB. The system is expected to be operational in early 2010.

The DFC300 will support Barksdale’s critical operations in emergencies such as blackouts, natural disasters, weather events and other threats to the grid. By supplementing the base’s power grid with 24/7 baseload power, the DFC power plant will increase the availability and reliability of Barksdale’s power supply.

FuelCell Energy’s power plants generate baseload electricity 24/7 with 47% electrical efficiency, compared to 25–40% for combustion-based technology at the same size. When used in a combined heat and power (CHP) application where the fuel cell’s by-product heat is being used for hot water or for space heating, DFC power plants can achieve up to 80% system efficiency, resulting in significantly reduced CO2 emissions and lower power costs.

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Energy storage including Fuel cells