Adobe Systems has completed the installation of a 1.2-megawatt (MW) fuel cell system from Bloom Energy at its San Jose headquarters that will generate 30 percent of the facility’s electricity needs. The fuel cell installation is expected to reduce the company’s carbon footprint and energy costs as well as mitigate power outage risks.
Adobe expects to reduce its carbon footprint by approximately 121.5 million pounds over 10 years with the fuel cell system.
In addition, the new installation will cut Adobe’s electricity costs from about 8.5 cents per kilowatt hour from 13 cents it pays for grid power from PG&E, according to Randy Knox, senior director of global workplace solutions at Adobe, reports Greentech Media.
Knox told Greentech Media that the price includes maintenance, fuel and the amortized cost over the 1o-year operational life of the fuel cell, along with the 30 percent federal tax credit and California incentives.
Additional cost savings could have been achieved by using standard methane in the system but Adobe opted to buy bio-methane from a landfill over a five-year period, according to the article.
Touted as the largest commercial Bloom Energy fuel cell installation to date, the system, comprised of 12 Bloom Energy servers, or “Bloom Boxes,” is installed on the 5th floor of Adobe’s West Tower at the company’s headquarters campus, which is composed of three high-rise towers and a parking structure.
Each server is the size of an average parking space and contains thousands of Bloom fuel cells, which convert air and biogas into electricity via a clean electrochemical process, producing zero net carbon emissions, says Bloom Energy. Typically, one server generates enough power to meet the needs of approximately 100 average U.S. homes or one small office building.
The Bloom fuel cell installation is Adobe’s second major renewable energy installation. In December 2009, Adobe installed 20 Windspire wind turbines.
“Installing Bloom Energy fuel cells supports Adobe’s efforts to remain at the forefront of utilizing impactful, clean technologies to reduce our environmental footprint,” said Randall H. Knox, III, senior director, Global Workplace Solutions, Adobe. “We hope to be an example to other companies considering cleaner, more affordable energy sources for their operations.”
A host of major U.S. companies including Bank of America, Coca-Cola, Cox Enterprises, eBay, FedEx, Google, Staples and Wal-Mart have purchased the Bloom Energy Server since its official launch in February.