Navigation : EXPO21XX > PROCESS INDUSTRY 21XX > H19: Heating & Heat Transfer > Fuel Cell Energy Solutions
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  • Offer Profile
  • FuelCell Energy, Inc. (NASDAQ: FCEL) is a global leader in delivering clean, efficient and affordable fuel cell solutions configured for the supply, recovery and storage of energy. We provide comprehensive turn-key solutions for our customers that include everything from the design and installation of a project to the long-term operation and maintenance of the fuel cell system.
Product Portfolio
  • Carbonate SureSource™

  • The complete line of carbonate SureSource™ products from FuelCell Energy delivers ultra-clean distributed power – efficiently and economically. These fuel cell solutions provide distinct advantages over other forms of distributed power generation, including
    • High efficiency with fuel conversion efficiency unsurpassed in the industry
    • Fuel flexibility with the ability to operate on readily available natural gas or renewable biogas
    • Virtually no pollution as SureSource plants emit only trace levels of nitrogen oxide (NOx), sulfur oxide (SOx) or particulate matter

    The clean air profile of the SureSource product facilitates clean air permitting, reducing permitting costs and approval time. In fact, the SureSource 3000 and SureSource 1500 are designated as “Ultra-Clean” under 2007 California Air Resources Board (CARB) standards, reinforcing the environmental benefits of fuel cells.

    These versatile power generation solutions are available in different sizes and configurations to address a customer’s specific needs. Configurations include:
    • Natural gas letdown station energy recovery
    • Fuel cell carbon capture
    • Distributed hydrogen
      • SureSource 1500™ – 1.4 Megawatts of Clean & Affordable Power

      • This solution is ideal for on-site power generation for large installations requiring continuous power and value high-quality heat for facility heating and/or absorption chilling. The system is suitable for a wide range of applications, including wastewater treatment plants, manufacturing facilities, hospitals and universities.

        Featuring ultra-low emissions, quiet operation and minimal space requirements (about the size of a tennis court), the SureSource 1500 is suitable for locations where combustion-based traditional power generation technologies are not feasible or desirable such as next to buildings or in space-constrained urban locations
      • SureSource 3000™ – 2.8 Megawatts of Continuous Power

      • Comprised of two 1.4 megawatt (MW) modules, the SureSource 3000 generates 2.8 MW of ultra-clean power. Similar to the SureSource 1500, the system is well-suited for on-site applications and caters to customers with an even greater power load requirement. Ideal applications include large universities, manufacturing facilities, wastewater treatment plants, or for multi-plant fuel cell parks to support the electric grid.

        The SureSource plants are scalable so that multiple systems can be combined to provide tens of megawatts of ultra-clean energy to meet a customer’s power demand or to supply directly to the electric grid. The clean emissions profile, quiet operation and modest space requirements make these fuel cell parks easy to site in urban areas. This high power density is exemplified in a five-unit 15 MW fuel cell park located in an urban Bridgeport, Connecticut neighborhood that occupies only 1.5 acres of land; and a 21-unit 59 MW fuel cell park located in South Korea that utilizes just over 5 acres.
      • SureSource 4000™ – 3.7 Megawatts of Highly Efficient Power

      • The SureSource 4000 is the largest in the SureSource power plant fleet and generates 3.7 megawatts (MW) of ultra-clean power with an industry-leading electrical efficiency of approximately 60%. This enhanced-efficiency fuel cell system is designed for utilities, large industrial users, data centers, and other customers focused on clean and affordable power driven by the benefits and economics of high system electrical efficiency.

        Unique Configuration
        The standard 2.8 megawatt SureSource 3000 power plant is comprised of two 1.4 megawatt fuel cell modules that operate in parallel. This 3.7 megawatt configuration adds a third module that utilizes unused fuel from the other two modules that would normally generate heat and converts this fuel to electricity to produce additional power. The SureSource 4000 plant needs only about 10,000 square feet, or only about ¼ of an acre, providing the benefit of siting this power generation solution where the power is used.

        The value proposition for customers and ratepayers is a power plant that can compete with large-scale combined cycle gas plants in terms of both efficiency and economics, yet virtually eliminates criteria pollutants, lends easily to siting in populated and land-constrained areas, and installs relatively quickly. The versatility and scalability in siting of the SureSource 4000 promotes point-of-use installations such as next to existing electrical substations, thereby avoiding transmission and the associated line losses from transmitting the power from distant locations.
    • Benefits

        • Generating power via chemistry, not burning

        • Emits water – Not Pollutants

          FuelCell Energy power plants convert fuels such as clean natural gas or renewable biogas into electricity, heat, and water through an electrochemical reaction within the fuel cells. This combustion-free power generation process creates electricity that is virtually absent of pollutants, supporting customer sustainability goals and promoting public health for neighboring communities.

          In comparison, internal combustion-based power generation creates harmful emissions such as nitrogen oxide (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SOx) and particulate matter (PM). NOx and SOx emissions are regulated in many regions to minimize their adverse health effects and the creation of smog. PM emissions are a public health concern as the particulates can lodge deep in human lung tissue, accumulating over time. While downstream exhaust treatment of internal combustion emissions can remove some NOx, SOx and PM, overall levels remain significantly higher than those achieved from ultra-clean fuel cell power generation. Downstream exhaust treatment for internal combustion power generation also adds cost and complication.

        • High Efficiency Drives Economics

        • The high efficiency of our SureSource power plants contributes to favorable economics through lower fuel consumption as fuel cell power plants generate more power from a given unit of fuel than similar size internal combustion-based power generation.

          Our power plants are 47 to 60 percent electrically efficient and can achieve total thermal efficiency up to 90 percent in a combined heat and power (CHP) configuration, depending on the application. For natural gas pipeline applications, we offer an enhanced efficiency configuration with a turbine recovery generator that can achieve electrical efficiencies of 60 percent and higher, depending on the flow of pipeline gas.

          Our SureSource power plants are ideal distributed generation sources and enable efficient power delivery. Providing power at the point of use avoids the need for transmission & distribution infrastructure and corresponding transmission losses. Typically, the transmission of power over long distances results in line power losses of 7 – 9 percent of the centrally-generated power. As a form of distributed generation, our fuel cell solutions avoid these costly transmission losses.

        • Ultra-clean power, small footprint

        • Clean and Quiet Power

          Fuel cells emit water vapor rather than pollutants as they use chemistry to generate power from a fuel instead of burning. This virtual absence of pollutants combined with vibration-free and relatively quiet operation enables our fuel cell power plants to be sited near residences, within cities, and on university, hospital and commercial campuses.

          Site within Cities

          Land can be a scarce resource in certain regions and clean, quiet power generation with a modest footprint that generates power where the power is used is advantageous. One acre of land supports 10 megawatts of fuel cell plants, adequate to power approximately 10,000 average size USA homes. By comparison, similar annual power output from intermittent solar in the northeast USA would require approximately 395 acres of land, which starkly illustrates the advantage of being able to locate clean and quiet fuel cells on small parcels of land within cities.

          For example, a 14.9 megawatt fuel cell park in the northeast USA occupies only 1.5 acres of land near a residential neighborhood and the world’s largest fuel cell park, a 59 megawatt facility in South Korea, occupies only about 5.1 acres of land.

          Avoiding transmission is another advantage of fuel cells. Transmission permitting can be difficult and costly, particularly in populated areas that prefer to avoid the siting of high tension power lines in their neighborhoods.

        • Versatile fuel-flexible solutions

        • Our SureSource power plants efficiently convert hydrogen and oxygen into ultra-clean electricity and usable high quality heat suitable for making steam. The hydrogen is obtained from a fuel source such as clean natural gas or renewable biogas, and is reformed within the fuel cell itself. This unique internal reforming technology allows SureSource power plants to utilize readily available fuels.

          Natural gas is the primary fuel source utilized by our growing installed fleet of SureSource power plants. An established natural gas distribution pipeline in our geographic markets combined with the high efficiency of the fuel cell power generation process that is valued by our customers support the use of this clean fuel source for generating electricity and heat.

          SureSource power plants operating on renewable biogas are an especially compelling value proposition as they convert a waste product into ultra-clean electricity and heat, solving economic and sustainability challenges for our customers. Biogas is generated by the decay of organic material (i.e., biomass). This decaying organic matter releases methane, or biogas. A harmful greenhouse gas, the biogas cannot be released directly into the atmosphere, while flaring creates pollutants and wastes this potential fuel source. Capturing and using biogas as a fuel, however, solves these vexing challenges and provides a carbon-neutral renewable fuel source.

          SureSource plants can also use directed biogas for fuel, which is biogas cleaned to pipeline standards and injected into a natural gas pipeline for use at a distant location.

          A variety of other fuels, both gaseous and liquid, have been proven effective with SureSource systems, including propane, coal syngas and even bunker fuel used for ship fueling.

      • Supply

          • Electricity

          • We solve energy, economic and environmental challenges with efficient, affordable and clean fuel cell power generation solutions. Our versatile solutions are easy-to-site and scalable, including utility applications supplying the electric grid and on-site applications on the customer side-of-the-meter.
          • High Efficiency Combined Heat & Power (CHP)

          • Our fuel cell plants generate both electricity and usable high quality heat or steam from the same unit of fuel, supporting sustainability and economics. The heat or steam generated from this highly efficient configuration, referred to as combined heat & power (CHP), can be used for heating buildings and meeting hot water needs, and the steam can be used for cooling using conventional absorption chilling equipment. The heat production is approximately 7000 F. and suitable for supporting industrial processes such as commercial baking, pharmaceutical production or wastewater treatment.
          • Hydrogen

          •  Our versatile SureSource power plants are capable of producing multiple value streams including the on-site production of high purity hydrogen along with ultra-clean electricity and usable heat. In a standard configuration, a fuel such as clean natural gas or renewable biogas is reformed inside the fuel cell into hydrogen, which then electrochemically reacts with air to generate power and heat. Our SureSource Hydrogen fuel cell power plant is configured to produce additional hydrogen beyond what is needed for power production; generating a stream of hydrogen suitable for industrial or transportation applications. This configuration utilizes the commercial SureSource product line, transforming the distributed power generation system into one which is also a low-cost and efficient distributed hydrogen production system. Read more on this solution in this White Paper on Distributed Hydrogen.
        • Recovery

            • Pipeline

            • Throughout the world, natural gas is transported long distances in pipelines under high pressure. This high pressure is needed to maintain a high volume of flow in the pipeline network; however, before distributing gas to homes and businesses, the pressure must be reduced, which is undertaken at let-down stations, typically located on the edges of population centers. As the pressure is reduced, the gas cools as it expands. To prevent the gas systems and pipeline from freezing, the let-down stations use a gas-fired burner to generate heat. This standard practice fails to harness the energy lost from this pressure reduction process and the combustion-based boiler that produces the needed heat emits pollutants and carbon.
            • Carbon Capture

            • FuelCell Energy’s scalable and affordable carbon capture solution captures carbon emissions from existing coal or gas-fired power plants, while simultaneously producing power. The solution is scalable so the amount of carbon capture can be increased over time. The fuel cells also destroy approximately 70% of the plant’s smog-producing pollutants. The capability to efficiently and affordably capture carbon while simultaneously producing power enables emission compliance in a manner that provides a revenue stream and return on capital from the sale of power produced by the fuel cells.
            • Hydrogen

            • Hydrogen is used for industrial processes such as petrochemical industry applications, as a transportation fuel, and as an energy carrier to support long duration energy storage. The ability to cleanly, efficiently and economically generate hydrogen has market value, particularly with a scalable solution that can be sized appropriately for different market needs and opportunities.
          • Storage

                • Storage

                • Our SureSource Storage solution is a developing, market-driven energy storage system that utilizes solid oxide electrolysis cells (SOEC) to affordably and efficiently convert excess power into hydrogen, an energy carrier, for long duration storage applications.

                  The hydrogen produced from SOEC can be stored and used for grid-power, hydrogen fueling stations or for industrial purposes as an alternative to natural gas reforming. SOEC can also be applied as a clean and highly efficient solution for storing excess power produced by intermittent technologies when their output exceeds the needs of the electric grid.

                  Suitable for installation adjacent to existing electrical substations, this easy-to-site solution enables long-duration energy storage with a process that has a high round-trip efficiency. When power is needed, the hydrogen is cleanly and efficiently converted back into power using the same solid oxide system in fuel cell power generation mode.

                  Meeting the needs for utility-scale applications as well as on-site opportunities, our SureSource Storage solution offers:

                  • Round trip energy efficiency above 70%
                  • Long duration storage as the hydrogen is compressed and stored on-site or transported for distant uses
                  • Easy siting on utility-owned land next to existing substations as system requires minimal space, achieves a clean emissions profile and operates quietly

                  The market for energy storage is significant for high efficiency and flexible long duration storage that is affordable for rate payers. The energy storage market continues to expand as utilities adjust to manage increased levels of intermittent renewable power generation supplying the electric grid. The hydrogen produced from SOEC can be stored and used for grid-power during periods of high demand, or supplied to hydrogen fueling stations or industry as an alternative to natural gas reforming.