Airforce base to run on fuel cell technology

LOUISIANA - FuelCell Energy, Inc announced the sale of a 300 kilowatt (kW) Direct FuelCell (DFC) power plant to improve the availability of reliable and environmentally friendly electricity for Barksdale Air Force Base (AFB) in Louisiana.

The DFC power plant was purchased by Concurrent Technologies Corporation (CTC), under contract with the United States Air Force Advanced Power Technology Office (APTO). CTC will provide research, design, development, testing, demonstration, and sustainment of the 300 kW carbonate fuel cell system at Barksdale AFB, Louisiana. The system is expected to be operational in early 2010.

The U.S. government is the largest electricity consumer in the world, with thousands of government buildings and military facilities in the U.

S. and abroad. As the government continues to deploy ultra-clean, efficient DFC power plants, it will reduce its emissions and peak power requirements while increasing power reliability.

DFC fuel cell power plants generate power electrochemically, without combustion, producing near-zero air pollutants like NOX, SOX and particulate matter. FuelCell Energy's power plants generate baseload electricity 24/7 with 47 percent electrical efficiency, compared to 25 to 40 percent for combustion-based technology their size. When used in a combined heat and power application where the fuel cell's byproduct heat is being used for hot water or for space heating, DFC power plants can achieve up to 80 percent system efficiency. This efficiency results in significantly reduced CO2 emissions and lower power costs.

As a key Air Combat Command base, Barksdale has a pivotal role in the nation's deterrent force and serves as headquarters for the 2nd Bomb Wing, the oldest bomber wing in the Air Force. DFC power plants increase energy reliability and security because they operate locally independent of the grid. The DFC300 will support Barksdale's critical operations in emergencies such as blackouts, natural disasters, weather events and other threats to the grid. By supplementing the base's power grid with 24/7 baseload power, the DFC power plant increases the availability and reliability of Barksdale's power supply.

"DFC power plants are a high-efficiency, distributed power generation solution that meets Barksdale's high reliability and security requirements," said Bill Foster, Vice President Government Business Development for FuelCell Energy.

"Installing a DFC power plant furthers the U.S. Department of Defense plan to increase energy efficiency and use more clean generation sources as set forth in the Energy Policy Act of 2005."


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