Around 650 large stationary fuel cell systems have been operated worldwide, according to a new free report by Fuel Cell Today.
The report analyses recent developments in this area, including the rate of adoption, region of development and funding. It reveals that large stationary fuel cells are currently being used as power sources at a wide range of sites including hospitals, hotels, waste-water treatment plants and schools.
‘Stationary fuel cells have the potential to play a key part in the evolution of the energy marketplace, as they have several benefits over existing technologies’, explains Fuel Cell Today editor David Jollie.
‘As well as generating lower emissions and less carbon dioxide, they should be cheaper to run, and more reliable. This was recently shown by the continued operation of a fuel cell in New York’s Central Park during the blackout’.
Mark Cropper, author of the report, comments: ‘Sixty-five systems have been installed in 2003, a noticeable upturn in production numbers. Growth in this area has been steady rather than dramatic in recent years, although stationary power remains the biggest fuel cell market in terms of installed capacity: almost 120MW has been installed worldwide since the 1970s’.
‘The most significant recent change is the range of different technologies being demonstrated’, he adds. ‘Until very recently nearly all the systems in operation were phosphoric acid fuel cells [PAFC], but now the picture is changing with the rise of other types of fuel cells, including molten carbonate fuel cells [MCFC] and solid oxide fuel cells [SOFC]’.
The report also examines the types of fuel used in stationary fuel cells – including natural gas, hydrogen and biofuels – and profiles major players in the field, such as FuelCellEnergy, General Motors, UTC Fuel Cells and Japanese companies Ishikawajima-Harima and Mitsubishi.
The full report can be downloaded, free of charge, by clicking <a href=’http://www.fuelcelltoday.com/surveys’>here</a>.