- Natural gas
- Coal seam / bed gas
- Waste gas from sewerage treatment plants
- Waste gas from land fill
- Hydrogen (99.99% pure)
Uses of fuel cells
The smaller fuel cells are used in applications including:
- Stationary power
- Remote power generation
Larger fuel cells are being used as a primary source of power in the following applications:
- Defence bases
- Hotels / resorts
- Waste water treatment plants
- Data Centres
Advantages of fuel cells
High efficiency is the main driver for most purchases. The larger fuel cells have efficiencies for power production alone of over 44%. As they are also exothermic, the heat generated is usually utilised for other purposes such as space or water heating or space cooling via the coupling of an absorptive chiller. In some cases the combined efficiency can be as high as 88%.
Fuel cells that run on pure hydrogen have one exhaust only, water vapour. This means no noxious fumes, no CO2 and no particulate matter.
The larger methane fuel cells do exhaust CO2 in addition to water vapour. They also have no noxious fumes or particulate matter. The higher power efficiency results in lower carbon dioxide output though when compared with similar sized diesel generators or gas turbines.
Fuel cells have no moving parts and, therefore, high reliability is the norm.
Similar to batteries, fuel cells are themselves silent running. Fuel pumps, where required, are generally the only producers of sound. The lack of noise pollution makes the larger fuel cells ideal candidates for locations like hospitals, hotels, residential or central business district locations.
dinkum energy provides consulting and sourcing services in fuel cell technology.