Honda is to install a stationary fuel cell power station at its US corporate campus in Torrance, California.
The fuel cell power station, a proof of concept, is anticipated by Honda as a first step towards the commercialisation of a power generation unit for use as a zero-emission alternative to diesel for backup power facilities such as data centres.
The station will utilise fuel cell components from Honda’s Clarity fuel cell vehicles in a four-quad parallel stationary power generation system capable of generating up to 1,152kW DC/1MW AC from an inverter.
The station is expected to be connected to the data centre on the campus in early 2023 for Honda to verify the performance while advancing its know-how in power supply, supply chain development, grid connection access, construction specifications and AC/DC connection requirements among other areas.
“We will leverage the expertise Honda has established in creating multiple generations of fuel cell systems for the development of a fuel cell power generation station,” said Mitsuru Kariya, senior vice president in charge of the R&D Business Unit of American Honda.
“This project is an opportunity to more quickly create, assess and advance a clean power generation system for potential commercial customers.”
In a statement, Honda says it remains committed to developing fuel cell systems for passenger vehicles, but the market for fuel cell systems to power larger trucks and transport ships, as well as stationary generation, is expanding rapidly in the US.
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Data centres in particular require high quality and reliable power, where any disruption in power supply can lead to downtime or problems such as data corruption and damage to servers.
Honda states an advantage of the four-quad design is the flexibility to change the layout of the four individual fuel cell units, for example to a cuboid, L-shape or Z shape, to suit the installation environment.