FuelCell Energy Inc (NASDAQ:FCEL) has commenced the commercial operation of a 2.8 MW fuel cell project at Tulare City, California. It is on the backdrop of over fifty years of innovation efforts to optimize SureSource Power Plants to produce power with the help of on-site renewable fuels.
Digester gas for operation of 250 KW System
FuelCell began using the biogas after its first shipment of the commercial power plant. It has used the digester gas to operate the first 250 KW systems in Japan. The company developed a prototype of the 1.4 MW SureSource 1500 at a wastewater treatment plant based in Renton in 2004. It later adopted 20 MW fuel cell systems that operate on renewable biogas at breweries and agriculture facilities in California and worldwide. The company has recently commenced the 2.8 MW Tulare Project. It is also developing a 1.4 MW San Bernardino Project.
The continued focus on innovation helped FuelCell to achieve a series of improvements in the gas purification and cleaning processes. As a result, the company offers a best-in-class solution for the generation of clean power using renewable resources.
FuelCell used propane to operate molten fuel cells during the outage of biogas. It has provided a dual-fuel capability that its on-site biogas projects have a backup fuel capability. The company provided a backup for the on-site biogas project through directed biogas or natural gas.
To ensure consistent power output at King County facility, FuelCell developed a technology that operates on a blend of natural gas and biogas. The company has standardized the fuel blending on its platforms and to support the projects that witness a variation in biogas availability.
The produced biogas also comprises impurities that include sulfur content and moisture. Carbonate fuel cells do not deteriorate in their performances because of carbon dioxide dilution. But, FuelCell needs to eliminate sulfur content. The company has developed a clean-up system using in-house R&D.
FuelCell is maintaining a leadership position in the biogas power generation using these notable achievements. According to the estimates of the US Department of Agriculture, the potential for generating power using biogas in the US is 4.7 GW.