Fuel cells: Self-generated electricity even in winter

3/9/18, 11:00 AM -

Japan sees about 50,000 additional fuel cells per year. In Europe, this technology is still in its infancy, but the market is picking up steam.

Viessmann was the first European player in this new market.

Japan is blazing trails: To date, 200,000 fuel cells have been installed in the land of the rising sun. Panasonic is the world's most important supplier of these units, which are installed and sold in Europe by Viessmann.

Each year, 50,000 new units are installed in Japan. The government in Tokyo wants to bring a total of around five million power-generating fuel cell heating systems to the people. They have been subsidised since 2009.

Viessmann in the business since 2014

The German support programme – first of its kind in Europe – has been in existence for just one year. It is also amply endowed. A homeowner can get up to 16,000 euros if he is willing to part with his old natural gas heating system.

Up to 40 percent of the investment sum can be subsidised in order to implement the system conversion. The potential for self-sufficiency has never been greater: Running together, photovoltaics and fuel cells are able to completely power a residential building.

Vitovalor generates 750 watts

Viessmann has been offering their fuel cell, which generates 750 watts of electricity, by the product name Vitovalor 300-P since 2014. At around 7,300 operating hours per year, this is equivalent to 5,500 kilowatt hours electricity. In addition, a gas burner supplies thermal energy of between one and 25 kilowatts, depending on the customer’s requirements. This means that a single-family house can be nearly completely supplied with electricity and heat, given appropriate storage systems for electricity and heat. (HS)

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