FuelCell Energy affiliate seeks review of 3.7-MW project in Connecticut

TRS Fuel Cell LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of FuelCell Energy Inc., filed a July 21 petition with the Connecticut Siting Council for a declaratory ruling that a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need is not required for the installation of a 3.7-MW fuel cell combined heat and power facility.

TRS has entered into a lease agreement with J.A.R. Associates (JAR) under which TRS will rent a portion of JAR’s property located at 64 Triangle Street, Danbury, Connecticut. JAR currently operates a facility at this property. FCE will enter into an Engineering, Procurement and Construction Agreement whereby FCE constructs and installs a fuel cell power plant nominally rated at 3.7 MW at the site and a Long Term Service Agreement whereby FCE operates and maintains the project for a term of 20 years with TRS.

Based on the current schedule, the project is anticipated to be the first commercially operable High Efficiency Fuel Cell (HEFC), the company noted. Fuel Cell Energy’s HEFC system is configured with a series of three fuel cell modules that operate in sequence, yielding a higher electrical efficiency than the standard DFC3000 configuration of two fuel cell modules operating in parallel. The heat energy and unused hydrogen from two fuel cell modules is supplied to the third module, along with some natural gas to generate additional electricity. The HEFC configuration is designed to extract more electrical power from each unit of fuel with electrical efficiency of approximately 60%.

The project will cogenerate a nominal 3.7 MW of Connecticut Class I renewable energy. The power generated by the project will be delivered to the local distribution electrical grid. A portion of the project’s excess thermal output will be recovered into a glycol/water mixture and made available for JAR’s optional use via supply and return flanges provided at the fenceline of the power plant.

The project consists of multiple skids classified into three major subsystems. The mechanical balance of plant (MBOP) is comprised of three separate components; the desulfurization system, the main process skids, and the water treatment system (WTS) skid. The MBOP supplies fresh air, cleans and heats fuel and water, and includes the power plant control system. The electrical balance of plant (EBOP) is comprised of seven sections; three inverters, three transformers and one switchgear for grid connection. The EBOP converts the fuel cell DC power into utility grade AC power.

The power plant includes three fuel cell modules. Each module performs the electrochemical conversion of the continuous fuel supply into DC electric power. Each module contains four fuel cell stacks. Each stack contains the assembly of electrochemical cells that produce DC power. Resembling a large battery, each of the four stacks is constructed of approximately 400 individual fuel cells clamped together with manifolds inside an insulated container.

A project contact is: Craig Stevenson, Project Manager, FuelCell Energy Inc., 3 Great Pasture Road, Danbury, CT 06810, (203) 205-2061 (office), cstevenson@fce.com.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.