Hydrogen Fuel Cell technology in your home!

Japan now has over 250,000 fuel cell appliances in homes producing hot water and electricity and the demand is increasing by the day. So why? What is it? How can you benefit?

What is a hydrogen fuel cell?

In the west Hydrogen Fuel Cells are more known for there potential to power a car and are somewhat seen as a bit impractical. In reality, hydrogen fuel cell technology is a way in which hydrogen is converted into electricity and heat, and is even more suited to the home than a vehicle. 

Essentially hydrogen fuel cells use hydrogens natural gravitation toward oxygen to generate an electrical differential. When the hydrogen comes in to contact with oxygen it also generates heat and water as a byproduct. 

A hydrogen Fuel cell Boiler is a home unit that utilizes this waste heat for hot water and heating, while also generating electricity for the home. 

Boilers that generate heat and electricity are also known as Combined Heat and Power units, or CHP. CHP, however, more commonly uses combustion engines rather than Fuel Cell technology, and is only currently available in the commercial market. Fuel cell technology uses a chemical process rather than a burning of fuels. This generally gives very little pollution in comparison to its combustion counterpart.

How can I have a hydrogen fuel cell in my home?

Currently, the only manufacturer to offer such a solution is Viessmann due to their partnership with Panasonic. Together they have developed the Vitovalor. This product takes the natural gas available in most homes and turns it into nitrogen which powers the fuel cell, and the waste heat is stored in a buffer for heating and hot water usage. Its an all in one unit meaning there is no longer any need for a hot water cylinder, cold water storage tanks in the loft or any other heating appliances such as boilers as its all contained in 1 box. 

Can I financially benefit from having a hydrogen fuel cell boiler such as the Viessmann Vitovalor?

There are many financial benefits inplace to try and help push the technology as well as its innate ability to drive down your fuel bills. 

First off, it doesnt take a rocket scientists to understand that using gas, which is typically around 3 pence per kWh, to produce electricity that usually costs around 14 pence per kWh is a financial advantage.

To make the technolog even more atractive however the goverment is curently incentivising the electrical production by paying home owners 14.52 pence per kWh produced even if you use the electricity within your home. Whats more, they asume you export of 50% of production back in to the grid, and give owners an additional 5.2p per kWh for this. This looks set to expire in April 2019, however once obtained is guarenteed for 10 years.

The units also benefit fro PACE funding, this European incentive essentially gives £6500 toward the cost of the unit, in return for allowing them to monitor your usage. A worth while price. Adtionally to this the unit and its installation is only subject to 5% VAT.

As mentioned the Viessmann Vitovalor 300P is the only hydrogen fule cell / domestic CHP product currently available on the market. Financial benefits are secured more byb the fact this unit has a 10 year warranty parts and labour.

What is the Viessmann Vitovalor 300P price? How much will it return?

The Vitovalor 300P price varies depending on the installation, however, after taking off the £6500 PACE funding and including the 5% VAT, the price is typically from £12000 to £17000. However, the return on investment can be as little as 2 years once its installed and producing electricity. This can be relatively accurately forecast due to the fact the incentives are guaranteed for 10 years and there is no unexpected maintenance costs due to the 10-year parts and labour warranty.

To get a Vitovalor 300P price and also a 10 Year forecast on return on investment visit Vitovalor Installer, at the bottom you'll find a contact form where you can enter your installation specs and you'll be sent a price with forecast. 

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