Bloom Energy, Southern’s PowerSecure buying estimated 50 MW of distributed fuel cells

Bloom Energy, a provider of on-site power generation, and Southern (NYSE:SO) subsidiary PowerSecure said Oct. 25 that they have entered into a strategic alliance to provide behind-the-meter energy solutions.

PowerSecure will acquire an estimated 50 MW of Bloom Energy Servers under long-term power purchase agreements with commercial and industrial customers.

Bloom Energy says that each of its servers can provide 200kW of power, enough to meet the baseload needs of 160 average homes or an office building… day and night, in roughly the footprint of a standard parking space.

The companies said that by bringing together the scale and utility sector leadership of Southern and its PowerSecure distributed infrastructure assets, and the Silicon Valley-style innovation and distributed generation expertise of Bloom Energy, the alliance will provide an integrated, comprehensive energy solution.

The solution is designed to fully integrate Bloom’s firm 24x7x365 Energy Server platform with PowerSecure’s smart storage solutions. The result will deliver a reliable on-site generation solution tuned to the customer’s precise power requirements that will also flexibly adapt to changing conditions, bringing customers intelligent optimization of their energy usage while driving meaningful cost savings and long-term cost certainty.

This fully-supported integrated platform will be designed to meet customer needs on several critical dimensions:

•Enabling optimized use of power to drive cost predictability and strategic savings;

•Delivering the quality and exact type of power required by each part of their business, for example, AC power for offices and DC power for data centers;

•The ability to dial-in the level of reliability required from “no need” all the way up to mission critical reliability for tier IV data centers and critical operations;

•Providing the level of resiliency needed to ensure that the risk of operational disruption due to external events such as weather or other natural disasters is minimized, and;

•Enabling preferred level of performance on sustainability attributes.

The Home Depot is already expected to deploy the joint Bloom fuel cell + PowerSecure storage solution at approximately 60 stores, in addition to the 140 stores currently operating Bloom Energy Servers. Another customer will deploy 30 MW of distributed power through this alliance supporting hospitals, clinics and administrative centers.

“This strategic relationship marrying PowerSecure’s smart storage and other distributed energy solutions with Bloom Energy’s fuel cell technology allows us to play offense in the rapidly changing energy landscape by expanding our distributed infrastructure business,” said Southern Chairman, President and CEO Thomas A. Fanning.

“Like the computing and mobile telephony revolutions before, technology innovation is challenging assumptions of what is possible in electric power. Today, offering a customized power solution that is tailored to the needs of an individual business is technologically possible and economically attractive,” said KR Sridhar, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Bloom Energy.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.