FuelCell Energy

FuelCell Energy expects to sign its first contract for a megawatt-scale project in Europe later in 2014.

Bloomberg reports that the company built a 250-kilowatt plant in central London to showcase the technology and will complete another one of comparable size within a few months, according to Chief Executive Officer Chip Bottone. The company is talking to potential customers there and in Germany and Italy.
FuelCell Energy
FuelCell, which has more than doubled in the last year, completed a 59 MW project in South Korea in February, the world’s largest facility making electricity with fuel cells. It also built last year a 14.9-MW plant in the United States for Richmond, Va.-based Dominion Resources Inc. The deals suggest growing acceptance of using the technology to generate electricity on a large scale.

“We expect to sign some contracts for megawatt-scale plants in Europe this year,” Bottone said in an interview in London. “We are working on several projects right now.”

Fuel cells use hydrogen or natural gas to generate power and heat through a chemical reaction.

The company has said the the long-term sales potential in Europe is about 90 MW of projects.

A megawatt-scale plant costs about 3,000 euros ($4,165) a kilowatt to build, Bottone said. The company is seeking to reduce this by 30 per cent, a target it will achieve when it’s making about 200 MW of systems annually. It currently manufactures about 70 MW a year at its US factory.

FuelCell’s systems typically run on gas and produce energy for campuses, factories and utilities. They use molten carbonate technology, which doesn’t require precious metals or rare-earth elements. Other fuel cell designs require platinum, and companies including General Electric Co. have said that may limit demand.

FuelCell’s power plants emit about a third less carbon dioxide than systems that produce power from burning gas.

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