Fuel cells use the chemical energy in fuels to produce clean, safe, and efficient electricity. Fuel cells can also be used to provide distributed power generation (DG), which refers to electricity generation located at or near the site where it will be used. Efficient, fuel-flexible, cost-competitive DG systems provide reliable stationary combined heat and power (CHP) for a variety of applications, including commercial buildings and data centers. There is a critical need to develop fuel cell technologies that can enable DG at low cost and with high efficiency.
PROTON-CONDUCTING FUEL CELLS FOR STATIONARY POWER UPDATED: December 11, 2017PROJECT TITLE: Low-Cost Intermediate-Temperature Fuel-Flexible Protonic-Ceramic Fuel Cell and StackPROGRAM: Reliable Electricity Based on ELectrochemical Systems (REBELS)AWARD: $3,997,457PROJECT TEAM: Colorado School of Mines (Lead), FuelCell EnergyPROJECT TERM: October 2014 – September 2020
At ARPA-E, we’re committed to identifying and advancing transformational technologies that can fundamentally change the way we generate, store, and use energy. We focus on guiding a broad portfolio of early-stage energy technologies on a path toward the marketplace. Our wide-ranging portfolio demands that we engage a diverse group of potential customers – from vehicle manufacturers and electric utilities to semiconductor manufacturers and the U.S. military.
Investments in solar photovoltaics and wind turbines are soaring as costs fall and governments and companies seek to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. But fluctuating power from the wind and sun threatens to destabilize electricity grids. As more intermittent sources are connected, the power surges and crashes. This increases variability in voltage, in power and in the frequency of alternating current.
Today, the Department of Energy announced up to $30 million in Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) funding for a new program focused on the development of transformational electrochemical technologies to enable low-cost distributed power generation.
Today at New York Energy Week, ARPA-E Acting Director Dr. Cheryl Martin announced $33 million in funding for 13 new projects aimed at developing transformational fuel cell technologies for low-cost distributed power generation. The projects, which are funded through ARPA-E’s new Reliable Electricity Based on ELectrochemical Systems (REBELS) program, are focused on improving grid stability, balancing intermittent renewable technologies, and reducing CO2 emissions using electrochemical distributed power generation systems.
Dr. John Lemmon discusses the launch of ARPA-E’s new Reliable Electricity Based on Electrochemical Systems (REBELS) program and why it’s important to develop transformational fuel cell technologies for low-cost distributed power generation.
The purpose of the workshop was for ARPA-E to gather input from a diverse range of experts as it considers the creation of a program around technology advances required to increase performance and reduce cost of electrochemical devices, such as fuel cells for power generation in both stationary distributed generation and transportation (fuel cell vehicles) environments.