April 23, 2002 — H Power Corp., a fuel cell development company, announced that Osaka Gas Co., Ltd., a natural gas utility serving more than 6,000,000 customers in the Kansai area of Japan, has begun long-term operational trials of a 500-Watt proton exchange membrane (PEM) residential cogeneration fuel cell system for the Japanese residential market.
H Power developed the system under a previously announced agreement between H Power, Mitsui &Co., Ltd. (H Power’s marketing partner in Japan), and Osaka Gas.
To develop the 500-Watt system, H Power combined its proprietary fuel cell stack with Osaka Gas’ proprietary steam reformer and provided the balance of plant to complete the integration of these systems. The system provides primary power and hot water for a residence, and has been installed in Osaka Gas’ NEXT21, which is an experimental condominium complex located in Tennouji Ward, Osaka City. The unit can provide power at either 250 Watts or 500 Watts, is connected to the grid, and is capable of automatic start-up and shut-down. In addition to operating at a constant output, the unit can also function in a load-following mode, in which it reacts continuously to changes in the power and heating requirements of the residence.
The current test is planned to last one year, and Osaka Gas plans to continue test operations after that on improved prototypes until 2005. During this period, Osaka Gas plans to expand the number of systems installed in residential homes.
According to Yuji Matsumura, Senior Managing Director of Osaka Gas, “With the beginning of the current test, the development of residential PEM cogeneration systems has entered a new stage aimed at commercialization. We continue to believe that our reformer technology, combined with H Power’s cogeneration fuel cell expertise, is a marriage of world-class technologies that will produce an efficient, cost-effective fuel cell system well suited to the residential and apartment markets in Japan.”
H. Frank Gibbard, Chief Executive Officer of H Power Corp., commented, “We are very pleased to have achieved this milestone in our relationship with Osaka Gas. We expect to see strong demand for a 500-Watt system in the Japanese residential marketplace. As the only company providing Osaka Gas with fuel cells for their 500-Watt system, we look forward to providing next-generation designs with the aim of commercializing our technology in Japan.”
About H Power Corp.
H Power Corp. is a fuel cell development and manufacturing company, focused on near-term commercialization of fuel cell systems. H Power has designed proton-exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell systems to provide electricity for a wide range of applications including residential cogeneration products for homes, and power units for mobile applications.
H Power is addressing markets for its products in the U.S., Japan and Europe through its relationships with Energy Co-Opportunity (ECO), Mitsui, Osaka Gas, Kurita Water Systems, Gaz de France, PSA Peugeot Citroen, Naps Systems Oy, Fortum Oyj, Air Products & Chemicals, Ball Aerospace, and DuPont. H Power has manufacturing facilities in Monroe, North Carolina and Montreal, Canada. For additional information, please visit our website at www.hpower.com.