Japanese electronics manufacturer Panasonic is building a pilot hydrogen plant combined with photovoltaics and storage at its fuel cell factory in Kusatsu, Shiga Prefecture, in central Japan.
The plant is described as an “in-house” system relying on hydrogen fuel cell generators with a combined capacity of 500 kW, a 570 kW solar array, and lithium-ion batteries with an aggregate storage capacity of approximately 1.1 MWh. “The power generated with this system supplies the entire power used in manufacturing departments of the fuel cell factory located within the Kusatsu site,” the company said in a statement.
The system is expected to begin operations in the spring of 2022 and to be based on 100 Panasonic’s pure hydrogen fuel cell generators with a power output of 5 kW and a rated power generation efficiency of 56%. Each generator measures 834×417×1,766 mm and weighs 205 kg.
The PV system will occupy an area of 4,000 m2 and the fuel cell generators 6,000 m2.
“Through this demonstration, Panasonic will accumulate know-how and establish a track record in energy management, including the operation of pure hydrogen fuel cell generators, and aim to commercialize the RE100 solution, which uses power generated in-house from renewable sources to supply 100% of the electricity required for business activities,” the company said in a statement.