Bosch plans to start production of fuel cell power stations in 2024
Clean Energy Wire
German technology company Bosch is ramping up stationary fuel cell efforts, announcing this week plans to begin full-scale production of distributed power stations based on solid oxide fuel-cell (SOFC) technology in 2024. Bosch is intensifying its partnership with UK subsidiary Ceres Power, a leading player in the development of innovative solid oxide fuel cells and stacks, to achieve its goal. The companies have completed a successful prototype construction phase and now plan the pre-commercialisation process for stationary fuel cells. Bosch is aiming for an annual SOFC system production capacity of some 200 megawatts (MW) - enough to supply about 400,000 people with electricity in their homes. Bosch is planning to produce the stationary fuel-cell systems at its manufacturing and development sites in the states Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg and Saarland and said it would invest hundreds of millions of euros in the project by 2024. The company stressed that it was positioning itself as a systems supplier for stationary fuel cells with its own value creation in the cell and stack segment. One intended application of SOFC technology is in small, distributed, connectivity-enabled power stations, which can be used in cities, factories, trade and commerce, data centres, and electric vehicle charging infrastructure.
Bosch estimates that the market for decentralised power generation will reach a volume of 20 billion euros by 2030. “We see the highly efficient solid oxide fuel cell as an essential element of a sustainable energy supply,” said Christian Fischer, Bosch’s energy and building technology division head. Bosch earlier this year acquired an 18 percent stake in Ceres Power and holds an extensive technology license from the UK firm. Bosch has been manufacturing fuel cells and stacks in-house since 2019. Hydrogen technologies are seen as key energy sources in Germany’s Energiewende, particularly in emission-heavy sectors like aviation and the steel and cement industries, and the country has set out to become a global leader in the field.