Bringing Fuel-Cell Power to Africa

January 16, 2015 By Linda Hardesty

PowerCell energy manageNordic fuel cell technology company PowerCell Sweden and South African power-as-a-service player Mitochondria Energy have signed a Letter of Intent to collaborate to develop diesel-fed fuel cell power solutions to the African market. PowerCell’s power supply unit, the PowerPac, is currently under development. Mitochondria will be involved in the pre-production development and testing processes to ensure the end product meets customer requirements.

PowerCell’s PowerPac provides electricity for remote or bad-grid sites with an average power demand of 1–6 kW. By using widely available road diesel as fuel, the PowerPac will offer a cost-effective power supply that has no noxious emissions and a noise level kept to a minimum, say the companies.

The PowerPac reforms diesel into a hydrogen-rich gas, which is fed to a fuel cell to produce DC electric power. It requires minimal on-site maintenance and is operated and monitored remotely through the cellular data network.

The next generation of the PowerPac is now being assembled and will be deployed for testing in South Africa and Sweden in 2015. PowerCell is a spin-off company from the Volvo Group.

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