EBARA BALLARD Unveils Fuel Cell Power Generator

January 07, 2002 by Jeff Shepard

Ballard Power Systems Inc. (Vancouver, Canada) announced that its associate company, EBARA BALLARD, unveiled the second-generation of its engineering prototype 1kW proton-exchange membrane fuel cell stationary power generator for the Japanese residential market. The prototype exhibits increased performance and efficiency and its volume has been reduced by 40 percent.

The natural-gas-fueled cogeneration unit is the product of a collaboration involving Ballard´s subsidiary Ballard Generation Systems, EBARA BALLARD, EBARA Corp. (Japan) and Tokyo Gas (Japan). The second-generation prototype unit has advanced to include an electrical inverter, to convert dc power to usable ac power, and operates at an ac gross electrical efficiency of 34 percent. Heat-recovery efficiency has increased to 47 percent, providing a total efficiency of 81 percent.

"This fuel cell stationary power generator will provide electric power for Japanese homes as well as heat for space heating and hot water," said Mike Murry, Ballard´s vice president of power generation. "The increased performance of this next-generation prototype is testimony to the effectiveness of our collaboration with EBARA and Tokyo Gas."

"We are pleased with the rapid progress toward commercialization that EBARA BALLARD is making," said EBARA BALLARD President Masakatsu Ohya. "We consider ourselves on track to meet the objective of beginning to sell residential fuel cell power generation units commercially in 2004."