Connecticut backs fuel cell energy plants

How Fuel Cells Work

Seven fuel cell plants will be built in Connecticut soon, including some of the biggest such plants in the world, which will supply 70 megawatts, enough to power 60,000 homes. The state will buy the energy at 5.5 cents per kilowatt over wholesale to help boost fuel cell technology and make the state a showcase for it.

Two major fuel cell companies, Fuel Cell Energy and UTC Power, are based in Connecticut and will be building the plants.

Fuel cells are unobtrusive and are small, so they can be put anywhere. They output little pollution and create energy efficiently by a chemical reaction from hydrogen and oxygen. In this case, they will use natural gas as the feedstock, so it won’t be true renewal energy, but this is a huge step forward and one that will be widely watched to see if fuel cells can work on a mass level.

As an aside, the holy grail here is fuel cell energy from renewable sources, something that is quite possible using solar-powered fuel cells placed in deserts.

(Would it be that Connecticut was always so progressive – see the following post)

[tags]fuel cells[/tags]