The high-efficiency, low-emissions BlueGen fuel cell unit is the latest breakthrough in small-scale electricity generation. About the size of a dishwasher, each BlueGen unit can produce up to 17 000 kWh of fuel cell power per annum – twice the electricity needed to power an average Japanese home. Surplus electricity can be sold back to the grid.
Under the agreement with Paloma, Ceramic Fuel Cells will supply a BlueGen fuel cell unit for a 12-month demonstration, beginning in the first quarter of 2010. The BlueGen will be connected to the existing Japanese natural gas pipeline and the power grid.
Ceramic Fuel Cells has been working with Paloma, which owns the Rheem, Solahart and Raypak brands, since early 2008. In September 2008 Ceramic Fuel Cells installed a demonstration fuel cell system at Paloma’s facilities in Nagoya.
The BlueGen unit was successfully operated on one fuel cell stack for the agreed six-month trial, until the end of March 2009. The unit exported power to the local grid, and met all of Paloma’s technical performance requirements. These included daily modulation, where the power output of the fuel cell unit is turned up and down each day, to mimic the power needs of the average Japanese home.
Ceramic Fuel Cells Ltd is developing micro CHP (mCHP) and distributed generation units that generate electricity and heat for homes and other buildings. CFCL is developing and deploying fuel cell products with leading appliance partners and utility customers in Germany, France, the UK and Japan. In May the company launched its BlueGen gas-to-electricity fuel cell product.