Japanese Condos Get Energy from Fuel Cells
Tokyo Gas and Panasonic have jointly developed a fuel cell for condominiums – the Ene-Farm fuel cell – to be sold by Tokyo Gas starting in April 2014. The commercialized product allows the fuel cell unit, hot water unit and backup heat source unit all to be stored in the pipe shaft of the condominium.
By increasing the airtightness of the unit, it has become possible to install the new fuel cell in the pipe shaft that runs vertically through condominium floors, according to the companies. In addition, in order to meet the installation standards of condominiums, the legs that anchor the unit have been strengthened, making the fuel cell more earthquake resistant.
Compared to using electricity from thermal power plants and heating water using city gas, the Ene-Farm fuel cell for condominiums reduces primary energy consumption by about 37 percent when operating at the rated electricity generation, say the companies.
Tokyo Gas is aiming for sales of 500 units in fiscal year 2015 (ending March 31, 2015). Tokyu Land Corporation and Sohgoh Real Estate have both pledged to adopt the new fuel cell in condominiums they will sell at two properties with a total of 456 units.
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