Panasonic and Tokyo Gas introduce home fuel cell unit for condominiums
23 October 2013
Panasonic Corporation and Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd. have jointly developed the first “Ene-Farm” home fuel cell system (earlier post) for condominiums. The new units will be sold by Tokyo Gas from 1 April 2014. The product is the first commercialized fuel cell system in which the fuel cell unit, hot water unit and backup heat source unit can all be stored in the pipe shaft of the condominium.
A pipe shaft is a space to store water and gas pipes that runs vertically through condominium floors. The pipe shaft is usually located beside the entrance in many condominiums.
In comparison to detached houses, condominiums have more restrictions on the conditions for installations. By increasing the airtightness of the unit itself, it has become possible to install the new fuel cell in the pipe shaft in the open hallway of a condominium.
In addition, in order to meet the installation standards of condominiums, the legs that anchor the unit have been strengthened, making the fuel cell more earthquake resistant, and measures, such as a modified exhaust structure, have improved the wind resistance of the fuel cell, making installation in the upper floors of a condominium and operation in strong winds possible.
Compared to using electricity from thermal power plants and heating water using city gas, the new “Ene-Farm” fuel cell for condominiums reduces primary energy consumption by approximately 37% and CO2 emissions by approximately 49% when operating at the rated electricity generation. In a model case, users can cut around ¥30,000 to ¥40,000 ($306 to $408) from their annual utility bills, and reduce annual CO2 emissions by approximately 1.0 ton.
Tokyo Gas is aiming for sales of 500 units in FY 2015 (ending March 31, 2015).
|Ene-Farm for condominiums specs|
|Launch date||April 1, 2014 (scheduled)|
|Performance||Power generation output||200 W - 750 W|
|Rated generation efficiency||39.0% (LHV), 35.2% (HHV)|
|Rated heat recovery efficiency||56.0% (LHV), 50.6% (HHV)|
|Overall efficiency||95.0% (LHV), 85.8% (HHV)|
|Water tank capacity||147 liters|
|Dimensions||Fuel cell unit||H1,750 mm × W399 mm × D395 mm|
|Hot water unit||H1,850 mm × W400 mm × D560 mm|
|Backup heat source||Hot water heater (standard type)
H750 mm × W480 mm × D250 mm
Hot water heater (slim type)
H900 mm × W250 mm × D450 mm
|Free maintenance support||10 years|
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