• Fuel cells are used in a large number of applications. Among them major
areas of power generations are:
• Stationary – Residential, Large Scale plant
• Transport - Automotive
Stationary - Domestic power systems
• Fuel cell convert chemical potential energy into electrical energy and also
heat as a by-product of this process.
• Fuel Cell is highly efficient if heat produced used for space heating, hot
water or to drive refrigeration cycles.
• The electrical efficiency of fuel cells is higher than conventional electricity
generation (over 45% compared to 25–35% for conventional combustion),
and when the heat produced used will reach efficiency up to 98%.
• When waste heat is used for space heating and cooling, which is known as
cogeneration, or combined heat and power (CHP).
• It can make use of existing fuel distribution infrastructure. (natural gas or
town gas grids) for hydrogen supply.
• Fuel Cell Types used for residential are Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel
Cell - PEMFC, Solid Oxide Fuel Cell – SOFC
• Fuel cell units can also be configured to provide backup power in case of
grid failure, provide a seamless uninterruptible power supply (UPS).
• Fuel cell systems can operate in conjunction with other renewable energy
systems, such as solar or wind power.
• Solar panels gather the sun’s energy to provide the homes’ electricity. Any
excess solar energy is processed through an electrolyser, which converts
water to hydrogen gas and is stored in tanks. When solar power is
insufficient (and at night / on cloudy days) to meet the home’s energy
requirements, the hydrogen is fed to a fuel cell that converts the stored
power back into electricity.
• Installing a home FuelCell has the potential to get -off-the grid
Ene-Farm systems - Residential - 0.75 KW
• Cost approx. US$22,320
• ENE-FARM has deployment of well over 120,000 residential fuel cell
units in Japan
Large Scale Production
• Companies producing Power plants :
– Bloom Energy (SOFC),
– UTC Power (PAFC),
– FuelCell Energy (MCFC).
• Powering data centres
– Not yet demonstrated long period of durability and consistent
Wind–Hydrogen hybrid power plant at Prenzlau,
The total investment for the hybrid power plant amounts to € 21 M
Hydrogen Fuelling Station - Berlin
World's first CO²-neutral filling station, opened in the centre of Berlin in 2011
• Founder : K.S Sridhar, NIT, Trichy.
• Bloom Box is a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) power generator made by
Bloom Energy, of Sunnyvale, California
• Bloom Box Energy Server fits in roughly the same area as a standard
parking space and provides 100 kW of power.
• It can withstand temperatures of up to 1,800 °F (980 °C)
• Bloom's technology lies in the proprietary anode and cathode.
• Google became Bloom Energy’s first 100 KW customer in July 2008.
• The current cost of each hand-made 100 kW Bloom Energy Server is
$700,000–800,000 i.e., $7,000 per kilowatt and expected price drop as
$3,000 per kilowatt.
• Bank of America, the Coca-Cola Company, FedEx, eBay, Google, Staples
Walmart... have already been installed
Transport - Automotive
• Light Duty Vehicles
• Trains and trams
• Ferries and small boats
• Unmanned Aerial vehicles (UAV) / Unmanned undersea vehicles (UUV)
• Tata Motors - Star Bus
• Bus Model LPO 1625 Hydrogen Fuel Cell Bus
• Seating Capacity 30
• Fuel Cell Power System Hydrogen Fuel Cell
• Fuel Cell Gross Peak Power 114 HP
• Air Compressor for Fuel Cell Single Stage Twin Screw Type
• Fuel System Roof-mounted Hydrogen Cylinders 4 nos.
(205 litre each)
• Total Useful Amount of Fuel 14.5 kg
• Electric Propulsion Motor 2 Rear - AC Induction Motors with
• Peak Power Output of Motor 250 HP
• Rated Speed Idle: 600 rpm; Max.: 2100 rpm
• Rated Torque 1050 Nm at 800 rpm
- Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) type of fuel cell is used due to high
power density, which can vary the output quickly for start-up.
- Developed in collaboration with ISRO.
• Consumers products
– Future MacBook laptops may use Fuel cells
Fuel-filled cartridges could potentially power the device for days or
even weeks without refuelling
• Industrial users
– EFOY Pro systems to power equipment in rapid response vehicles
• An emerging niche for the units is in the monitoring and observation of
wildlife, which is noise sensitive and requires extended run times.
• Military users
– Low temperature FC DMFC, PEMFC has low heat transmission which
makes ideal for military applications.
– For surveillance systems which are operated away from the power
• Apollo spacecraft
– The first commercial use of fuel cells was in NASA space programs to
– The Apollo moon missions was powered single-handedly by fuel cells.
– Alkaline Fuel Cells used in Apollo spacecraft to provide both electricity
and drinking water
– Oxygen and hydrogen stored as liquids at extremely cold temperatures
Hydrogen tank were filled with ice and placed in a room at 70° F, it
would take 8.5 years for the ice to melt.
– Liquid Oxygen (LOX liquifies at -183 deg C) and Liquid Hydrogen (LH2 -
liquifies at -253 deg C) from the respective tanks are fed by individual
booster pumps to the main turbo pump to ensure a high flow rate of
propellants into the combustion chamber.
• The Fuel Cell Industry Review 2012
• Clean, Green, and Efficient: Fuel Cells Head Home -By Sandra
Curtin Fuel Cells 2000