DANBURY, CONN. — FuelCell Energy, Inc. announced the completion of the 14.9-megawatt (MW) Bridgeport fuel cell park and acceptance by Dominion, the project owner. The project was completed on schedule and power is being delivered to the electric grid under a 15-year energy purchase agreement with a Connecticut electric utility. The installation consists of five fuel cell power plants and an organic rankine cycle turbine for added output and further efficiency gains, with the power output adequate to power approximately 15,000 average size U.S. homes.
FuelCell Energy’s power plants have generated more than 2 billion kWh of ultra-clean power using a variety of fuels including renewable biogas from wastewater treatment and food processing, as well as clean natural gas.
"Dominion is pleased to be adding 15 megawatts of additional renewable energy in Connecticut to our existing 2,100 megawatts of carbon-free power from our Millstone Power Station," said David A. Christian, Dominion Generation chief executive officer. "These stations are generating clean, reliable electricity for Connecticut."
"The beginning of operations for the Bridgeport Fuel Cell Power Park represents an important milestone on the path toward Governor Malloy’s vision of a cheaper, cleaner, and more reliable energy future for Connecticut’s residents and businesses," said Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Daniel Esty. "This project highlights Connecticut’s new approach to clean energy, which focuses on using limited ratepayer dollars to leverage private capital and to get the greatest possible ratepayer benefit per dollar of public funds expended."
"The commencement of commercial operation by delivering electricity to the electric grid is a major milestone for a Project that is bringing international recognition to the City of Bridgeport and highlighting the capability of utility-scale fuel cell parks," said Bridgeport Connecticut Mayor Bill Finch. "This event marks the completion of a unique and successful public-private development effort, and the delivery of electricity is a key element of the City’s BGreen 2020 initiative as we work to make Bridgeport the cleanest and greenest City in the region."
"We met our commitments, delivering a turn-key multi-unit fuel cell park on schedule and in less than a year," said Chip Bottone, President & Chief Executive Officer, FuelCell Energy, Inc. "Our team developed the project, manufactured the fuel cell power plants, performed engineering, procurement and construction services, and now that the plants are operational, FuelCell Energy will operate and maintain the fuel cell park for Dominion during the 15 year term of the energy purchase agreement."
The project is located on a remediated brownfield site in an industrial area of Bridgeport, Connecticut, using only about 1-1/2 acres of land to provide 14.9 MW of baseload renewable power. The City benefits with clean distributed power generation and is receiving tax revenue from what was a vacant lot. The community benefits with ultra-clean power generation that is created locally, enhancing power reliability. The State of Connecticut benefits with tax revenue from a variety of sources, job creation in the State, and progress towards the State’s renewable portfolio standard.
Multi-megawatt fuel cell parks solve power generation challenges for utilities as the combination of near-zero pollutants, modest land-use needs, and the quiet operating nature of fuel cell power plants facilitates their siting in urban locations. Fuel cell parks offer a multitude of advantages for utilities and neighboring communities, including:
• Environmentally friendly power generation with virtually zero nitrogen oxide (NOx) that causes smog, sulfur dioxide (SOx) that contributes to acid rain, or particulate matter (PM10) that aggravates asthma, and the power is delivered with a low carbon footprint
• Distributed power generation places power near where it is used, enhancing the resiliency of the grid
• Highly efficient power generation process that is economical
• Continuous renewable power around the clock that is not reliant on weather or time of day