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Thread: Ceramic Fuel Cells

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    Default Ceramic Fuel Cells

    An article in the Melb Age yesterday that has caught my imagination is that of the ceramic fuel cell
    Evidently priced currently at $25,000 to reduce to approx $10,000 each next year. After just recieving a quarterly bil for $725 i am thinking this is not a bad option
    It has 2 benefits, produces hot water and twice the power the family house requires (throw a lead over the fence and share the power)
    Virtually no pollution and an aussie company
    There is a fine line between "Hobby" and "Madness"



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    Saw articles about this quite some time ago. The biggest hassle for me is "no natural gas" (a statement which my work colleagues would argue with though)

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    I think i saw a tv show about this unit, a guy in japan i think invented it, they all ready using it over there ??

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    I dont understand those spec's fully, it say it needs MAINS to 'Fire up' (20 Hours) and 36 hours on MAINS to cool down ?
    No Mains, No start !!
    It certainly isnt intended to be usd as an Emergency or short time supply.
    Specs say it generates 230V @ 2000 W, thats about 9 Amps ??
    A single bar radiator is rated at 2400 W as is an electric jug so if I read those specs correctly, how it can have double the needed power for any home ?
    230V +/- 10% gives you as low as 207 V to a Max 257 V.
    Some Appliances today run down to 100V so thats not a problem.
    Temp ranges above 'Freezing' preferred, no good where I live then.

    Rated to burn 12,000 btu's of Gas per hour, based on current Natural Gas prices, any ideas of running costs?
    Surpised no option for LPG.
    I was wondering if in the higly unlikely event you lost both Gas and Mains supply for an extended period, would that effect the Ceramics in any way?
    Last edited by gordon_s1942; 14-03-10 at 03:01 PM.

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    I think what they're saying is that the unit can supply a continuous 2kW or 48kWh/day which may well be greater than than the daily usage of a typical domestic dwelling but, as you say, it's not capable of supplying any peak demands. You'd be expecting some credit for energy returned to the grid overnight and at times its output exceeds the demand to offset the cost of mains supply from the grid.

    It uses 12.6MJ/hour of natural gas with a domestic gas price typically around 1 cent/MJ for the first 4000MJ/billing period and about 20% higher for usage >4000MJ so max output would cost around 13c/hour or ~$3/day for 48kWh and adding the water heating option would increase the savings. Typical domestic rates for electricity off the grid would be ~$8 or more for those 48kWh so considerable savings are evident. The big question is how long would it take to break even considering purchase + installation + maintenance + running costs - credits for surplus energy returned to the grid.

    In my case 2700kWh/quarter is about average year-round consumption which equates to about 31kWh/day so the unit's max output does exceed my average usage with ~17kWh/ day available for export to the grid. Adding the water heating option would make this even better.

    A new company in the US is producing what looks to be a similar unit - Bloom Energy

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6DLyruTqHI]YouTube - A Peek Inside the Bloom Box[/ame]
    Last edited by Skepticist; 14-03-10 at 09:52 PM.

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    Apologies, I didnt see the production was per Hour.
    With Allover's $725 bill for Quarter,= $2900 per Annum = 3 years and 6 months to = the $10,000 initial cost.
    you would need to know how many units were consumed and at what rates were charged to balance against a 'Pay Back' from the units this device supplied to the Grid.
    That would then have to be balanced against the cost's involved in the initial cost of this powercell, then any maintainence be it a fixed schedule or only J.i.T (Just In Time) and finaly the how long will it work before needing replacement.
    Even if this Powercell made Allovers bill ZERO, you are still paying for over 3 years and it would need to work for a further 4 odd years to pay for the replacement.
    So it would take quite some years before you made a profit but comming out even is nothing to ignore.

    Interesting Video but then all are when make projections of a pruduct.
    I have one other query and that is what are these cells made of, what chemicals, metals go into the making, are they biodegradable and when it is worn out,disposability.
    Last edited by gordon_s1942; 14-03-10 at 10:49 PM.

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    Need to include the costs of scheduled maintenance too IE minor maintenance every 3000 hours or 4 months and a major service once/year. Because this gadget is connected to the electrical, water and gas mains I'd expect specially qualified techs only would be permitted to work on the units IE closed market and outrageous prices could be expected if you're concerned about keeping the warranty intact.

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