SatCon Delivers PCS for Use in Petrochemical Plant

September 17, 2003 by Jeff Shepard

SatCon Technology Corp. (Cambridge, MA), a leader in power and energy management, announced that it has delivered a prototype power conditioning system (PCS) for a 75kW fuel cell power generation unit for a petrochemical plant application. A second unit purchased from SatCon is planned to be delivered to the plant site later this month.

SatCon's PCS units condition the electricity from the fuel cell into useable electricity. Both systems purchased from SatCon are being tested this fall. As part of an announced project for the on-site generation of electricity, the manufacturer is planning to install a 1MW system, using 14 fuel cell modules, within the next year. If the test proceeds as planned, a complete 35MW system, consisting of approximately 500 fuel cell modules, is slated to be operating in 2007.

The petrochemical plant generates hydrogen as a byproduct of its chemical and plastic production. Currently, that hydrogen is used as heating fuel, but the use of it to generate electrical power is of much higher value. With this technology, electrical power could be produced from the hydrogen generated in everyday industrial activity, which could support a new distributed power generation network, sometimes referred to as the new hydrogen economy.