Metallic Power Fuel Cell Provides Backup PowerSeptember 02, 2002 by Jeff Shepard
Metallic Power Inc. (Carlsbad, CA) announced that one of its zinc fuel cells successfully provided backup power to a cell site during power interruptions. The device provided 1.8kW of backup power in a rack-mounted configuration that included a 6kWh fuel tank to supply over three hours of continuous power under full load.
The fuel cell was connected to a radio base station and operated over varied conditions, including cold-start, full discharge, partial discharge and regeneration. The cell stack is responsible for producing power from zinc stored in the fuel tank; the regeneration unit automatically recycles the spent zinc fuel into reusable zinc pellets when the grid power is turned back on. The system functions similarly to a rechargeable battery.
"The successful demonstration marked a milestone in our development of zinc fuel cell technology," said Metallic Power CEO Jeffrey Colborn. "This is the first time anyone has integrated a zinc fuel tank, cell-stack and regeneration unit into a single configuration and used it to back up a cell site during deliberate power interruptions."