FuelCell Energy helps wastewater facility reduce emissions

FuelCell Energy Inc. announced that the Dublin San Ramon Services District has installed two of the company's stationary fuel cell power plants at the Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility in Pleasanton, CA. The Direct FuelCell DFC300 power plants will provide 600 kilowatts (kW) of ultra-clean power utilizing biogas generated in the wastewater treatment process as their source fuel. The new power plants will significantly reduce the facility's emissions of atmospheric pollutants...

DANBURY, CT, Dec. 13, 2007 -- FuelCell Energy® Inc., a global leader in the development and manufacture of fuel cells for Ultra-Clean electric power generation, announces the Dublin San Ramon Services District (DSRSD) has installed two of the company's stationary fuel cell power plants at the Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility in Pleasanton, CA. The highly efficient Direct FuelCell® (DFC®) DFC300® power plants will provide 600 kilowatts (kW) of ultra-clean power utilizing biogas generated in the wastewater treatment process as their source fuel. The new power plants will significantly reduce the facility's emissions of atmospheric pollutants and greenhouse gases.

FuelCell Energy's DFC power plants extract the hydrogen necessary for the electrochemical power generation process from a variety of fuels, including biogas generated in the wastewater treatment process, thus qualifying the plant as a renewable energy resource under federal law. As a result of this non-combustion process, DFC power plants produce negligible amounts of harmful emissions such as nitrogen oxides (NOx) and sulphur oxides (SOx), as well as significantly reduced carbon dioxide (CO2) in comparison to traditional fossil fuel power generators. This reduction in emissions is an important feature for the DSRSD, as the wastewater treatment facility is located in the heart of the Pleasanton community, surrounded by a residential neighborhood and community athletic fields.

With 47% electrical efficiency, DFC power plants generate 40% more electricity per unit of fuel using this renewable resource than comparable technologies. In this application, the DSRSD will also take advantage of the Combined Heat and Power (CHP) capabilities provided by the DFC power plants, which can boost system efficiency even higher. The facility will use waste heat generated by the DFC300 power plants to preheat incoming wastewater sludge, a process that helps facilitate anaerobic digestion of the wastewater. Anaerobic digestion uses microorganisms to break down organic material in the absence of oxygen.

The Tri-Valley area of California has long been a benefactor of renewable energy technologies, having implemented the nation's first large-scale wind farm in the Altamont Pass some 30 years ago, and has recently been a champion of fuel cell technology. In fact, the DSRSD's new fuel cell installation is the second FuelCell Energy DFC power plant installation that will be operating in just an eight square mile area within the Tri-Valley. The installation joins a 1 megawatt (MW) facility currently operating at the Santa Rita Jail in Dublin, CA.

"Fuel cell technology holds many significant advantages over other power generation technologies, particularly in an energy-savvy, environmentally conscious region such as California," says William Karambelas, FuelCell Energy Vice President of Business Development. "With various state and federal incentives available for implementing renewable energy sources like fuel cells, companies are finding our DFC products to be an economical, efficient, and environmentally-friendly means of producing reliable, on-site power, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week."

FuelCell Energy is a world leader in the development and production of stationary fuel cells for commercial, industrial, municipal, and utility customers.

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