ClearEdge Power, one of the top 15 fuel cell manufacturers, received one of the biggest fuel cell orders to date - a $500 million order from Austria's Güssing Renewable Energy for 50 megawatts (MW) by 2020.
Güssing Renewable Energy participated in ClearEdge's $73.5 million Series E financing round last year, which will support installation of 8.5 MW of fuel cell systems over the next 3 years, rising to 50 MW by 2020.
ClearEdge also received a DOE grant to support adoption of fuel cell technologies in various vertical markets.
Güssing will also sell, install and service ClearEdge systems throughout Austria and and other western European markets.
The Austrian town of Güssing is the first European community to produce 100% of its energy from renewable sources.
"With its flexible, modular power systems, ClearEdge has developed a distributed energy solution that will fundamentally change the way people receive power," notes Michael Dichand, Chairman, Güssing Renewable Energy. "We see these fuel cell systems as the perfect complement to our sustainably cultivated biomass facilities and are pleased to be able to partner with a forward-thinking company like ClearEdge Power as we aggressively move to achieve our clean energy goals."
Although the fuel cells will initially run on natural gas, the plan is to run them on biomass feedstocks such as wood chips.
ClearEdge cites the advantages of fuel cells, which can run on a variety of feedstocks, such as propane or methane and the excess heat it produces can be used to heat water or to generate forced hot air. Fuel cells provide baseload power, running 24/7 for years.