The city of New Haven, Conn., installed a 400 kW fuel cell in a new mixed-use 700,000 square foot residential development in the center of the city, according to a press release. According to a report in the New Haven Independent, it is the largest fuel cell used by a residential building.
According to the press release, the fuel cell will provide power to 500 residential units, common areas and retail spaces within the building, 360 State Street. It will meet nearly 100% of the building’s electric needs as well as provide thermal energy for space heating, domestic hot water and the swimming pool. The application of the fuel cell is estimated to reduce the building’s carbon emissions by 790 metric tons annually when compared to the U.S. EPA eGrid emissions factor for non-baseload generation in the New England ISO utility system.
According to the Independent, the amount of energy saved by the fuel cell will be equivalent to taking 100 cars off the road.
The project received a grant from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund to cover nearly half the cost of the fuel cell unit. This assistance, in addition to the annual energy savings the fuel cell will produce, allow for a payback of five and half years.
In addition to the fuel cell, 360 State incorporates a spectrum of energy efficiency measures. The building’s performance will be tracked in real-time and available publicly via a web portal and lobby display, showing electric, natural gas, renewable energy, and water consumption patterns. Utilizing the latest innovations in smart grid technology, tenants will be able to track their own water, electric, and thermal energy usage; they will also be able to participate in a regional demand response program, helping to shed load from the utility grid when it is peaking, according to the press release.
The development is also a certified LEED Platinum Plan, the first in the nation to be recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council in the Pilot Neighborhood Development Program.