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Home Fuel Cell Systems Reduced Energy Use by 15.3% in One-Year Test

Residential fuel cell systems in a one-year test reduced primary energy consumption by an average of 15.3% (equivalent to a reduction of 200 liters of oil), and reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 28% (a reduction of approximately 850 kilograms of CO2), according to a report released by the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

The report presented data for one year beginning in October 2005 from 175 units used in the first-term trial of the Stationary Fuel Cell Extensive Demonstration Project, which started in fiscal 2005 with the aim of promoting widespread home use of fuel cells.

The New Energy Foundation (NEF), a non-profit organization, conducted the project to install residential fuel cell systems and to collect performance data on the units to evaluate the technology and find problems. The New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO), an independent administrative agency, subsidized the project. In the first term of the project, seven companies participated using city-gas-fueled units or LPG-fueled units.

The implementing companies and fuel cell makers are paired into teams and the data collected were grouped and compared on a team basis. The highest-performing team achieved an average reduction of 26.7% per year in primary energy consumption and 40.5% in CO2 emissions.

Fifteen companies and 1,257 households were participating in the project as of January 2006, including 305 households that joined in the second term of fiscal 2005 and 777 households that joined in fiscal 2006. The subsidy per unit was up to ¥6.0 million (about US$50,420) for fiscal 2005 applications, and ¥4.5 million (about US$38,000) for fiscal 2006 applications.


John Baldwin

what was the reduction from? Its meaningless without saying what the starting point was!

Kit P

$38 grand subsidy per each 1 kw unit to save 15%. Something must have gotten lost in translation.


The reduction is equivalent to "200 liters of oil", so the pre-reduction figure is 200/0.153 = 1300 liters = 345 gallons equivalent.

John Schreiber

looks like the payback at present prices is about 35 years, assuming the FC lives that long. Is this a cogen install? Solar looks like a much much better deal.


A silly report. The lions share of the savings isnt energy its MOOLA because you convert a chea[ energy source into a sprndy one saving alot of money.

Also in mass production such tiny fuel cells wont cost much even now but these arbt mass produced thus spendy.


Also, they are comparing to the existing generation mix. If more grid power was made from combined cycle gas turbines (~60% efficient) or adding organic rankine cycle heat recovery to existing power plants (lifting 30% efficient coal to >50%), the home FC systems would be LESS efficient and produce more CO2 than the grid.


Not quite, clett.  Any cogen system which burns less than 1.67 units of additional fuel per unit of electric generation would outdo the CC powerplant.  For instance, replace a 95% efficient furnace with a cogenerator which gets 70% thermal and 20% electric efficiency.  Producing 1 kWh of heat in the cogenerator would burn an additional 0.376 kWh of fuel, and create 0.286 kWh of electricity.  The effective efficiency would be 76%, beating the CC plant by a wide margin despite the doubled thermal losses.


Someone on here wanted links to Honda's CHP system. Here is one and the other is a PDF of the spec.


Manufacturers are expecting to get these units down to the $5000 range by 2012.

R&D costs a lot. Yes, there is a $38,000 subsidy today but you have to start somewhere.

Mr Red Rose120

this is nice post and having a good status in the market, it is also called the house of knowledge,

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