FirstEnergy Corp. and Ballard Power Systems are testing what they describe as an innovative utility-scale fuel cell system designed to produce one megawatt of electricity – enough to power more than 600 homes. The demonstration is being conducted at the FirstEnergy plant in Eastlake, Ohio.
Considered the world’s largest proton exchange membrane hydrogen-powered fuel cell generator, the 54-foot-long unit is housed in a tractor-trailer for mobility and produces only water and heat as by-products. Over the next five years, the companies will test performance of the system in real-world operating conditions to better understand its capability to provide generating capacity during peak usage periods in the months of May through September. In addition, the operating data will be evaluated in collaboration with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).