Fuel Cell To Power Connecticut High School

A high school in Connecticut is soon to be the home of a 400 kilowatt fuel cell system. The fuel cell, which will be provided by UTC Power, is part of a 10 year energy services agreement that has the company installing and operating the system at Hamden High School in Connecticut.

According to UTC, the 400 kilowatt fuel cell is expected to provide  about 90% of the school’s annual electricity needs and pump heat into the school’s buildings and swimming pool. The town and its education officials anticipate that the 400 kilowatt fuel cell will reduce the school’s energy costs by $800,000 over the 10-year duration of the contract and serve the additional purpose of functioning as part of the science curriculum offered at the high school.

image via UTC Power

The fuel cell installation is reportedly being supported by a grant from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) which gets its funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Dale Hedman, acting president of CCEF, points out the new fuel cell will add to two other green initiatives being implemented in Hamden, including a 4 kilowatt solar photovoltaic installation at the town’s community center and another 5 kilowatt system at its middle school.

The fuel cell is expected to reduce the school’s annual carbon dioxide emissions by more than 809 metric tons, which is reportedly equivalent to planting more than 187 acres of trees. The fuel cell is meant to be operational by the end of this year and will help the Town of Hamden exceed its clean energy goals of 20 percent by 2012.