The first European fuel cell CHP power plant of megawatt size is now operating in Mannheim. Contrary to conventional power plants, this energy solution delivers heat and electricity virtually absent of pollutants, making it a milestone for the green energy of the future. The innovative plant has been jointly installed by E.ON and FuelCell Energy Solutions at Friatec AG. Over the course of at least ten years, it will provide clean energy for the production processes of materials specialist Friatec.
With a capacity of 1.4 MW, this fuel cell power plant is the only one of its kind in Europe to date. In terms of technology and environmental protection, fuel cells represent a promising alternative to conventional combined heat and power plants. In comparison with other decentralized technologies such as gas turbines, they use fuel sources far more efficiently. In addition, they generate power in a non-combustion process which is virtually absent of pollutants. By using this fuel cell, Friatec will be able to reduce its CO2 emissions by approximately 3,000 t/year.
The fuel cell power plant was installed in only nine months as a joint project by E.ON Connecting Energies, E.ON’s subsidiary for commercial and industrial energy solutions, and FuelCell Energy Solutions, a joint venture by Fraunhofer IKTS and FuelCell Energy Inc. E.ON and FuelCell Energy Solutions have entered into a long-term energy partnership to offer high-performing clean fuel cell technology to customers in energy-intensive sectors.