MILAN and CAMBRIDGE, Mass., May 22, 2001 Nuvera Fuel Cells, Inc., and RWE Plus AG today announced they will form a joint venture to develop and distribute fuel cell systems in Europe.
The partners plan to develop, manufacture, and sell combined heat and power (CHP) fuel cell systems with an electrical output of up to 50 kW for use in residential and small commercial power applications. The joint venture aims to commercialize the products by 2004 and will sell broadly to all utilities and customers, although RWE Plus will be a “preferred customer” of the new entity.
The joint venture, which is on an exclusive basis, will focus on proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell systems that can operate on natural gas and propane, among other fuels (excluding hydrogen). Field tests aimed at system optimization are planned in Germany starting mid-2002. Moreover, the partners will investigate other applications, e.g., in telecommunications, where electricity supply must be of outstanding quality.
According to Business Communcations Co., Inc., fuel cells have emerged as one of the most promising technologies for meeting growing worldwide energy needs. The group also projects that during the period between 1998 and 2003, distributed generation will grow at an average annual rate of 14.9% in the United States and 28.4% worldwide.
“Our vision remains focused on meeting today’s growing global energy demands,” said Mark Brodsky, President and CEO of Nuvera Fuel Cells. “Through our partnership with RWE, we aim to expand our technical knowledge base and increase our ability to distribute CHP fuel cell systems in Europe to meet the rapidly increasing consumer need for clean, efficient distributed power. RWE’s focus on energy and the environment strategically fits into our goal to provide reliable electricity to single family homes and small businesses around the world.”
“It is our aim to position ourselves more strongly than before in distributed power generation,” said Manfred Remmel, President and Chief Executive Officer of RWE Plus AG. “The fuel cell plays a crucial role for RWE Plus. Our cooperation with Nuvera Fuel Cells is an important step towards using the vast potential inherent in this technology.”
The agreement marks another milestone for Nuvera in its ongoing efforts to secure technology, manufacturing, and marketing partners, expand its global presence, and advance the commercialization of its fuel cell technology. Recently, Nuvera also formed a joint venture with Air Liquide to developed hydrogen-based fuel cell systems and signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Mitsui & Co., Ltd., to explore fuel cell opportunities in Japan.
Nuvera Fuel Cells, Inc., (www.nuvera.com) is a designer and developer of fuel processors, fuel cell stacks, and integrated fuel cell systems for stationary and transportation applications. Its fuel processors and proton exchange membrane, or PEM, fuel cell stacks have been successfully tested and evaluated by major automobile and appliance manufacturers, research institutions, and industrial and energy companies. Nuvera’s fuel processors have demonstrated the ability to extract hydrogen from a number of commonly available hydrocarbon fuels, including gasoline, ethanol, methanol, natural gas, kerosene, propane, butane, home heating oil, and diesel. Nuvera was formed in April 2000 through the merger of De Nora Fuel Cells S.p.A., the fuel cell subsidiary of the Italian engineering concern Gruppo De Nora, and Epyx Corporation, the fuel processing subsidiary of the American business and technology consulting firm Arthur D. Little, Inc. Nuvera maintains corporate and operational facilities in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Milan, Italy.
About RWE Plus
RWE Plus (www.rwe.com) is the management company for electricity sales and marketing in the RWE Group. The company offers customized energy and energy- related services for industry, municipal utilities, business as well as private and small commercial customers. Combined with its majority holdings, RWE Plus sells about 196 TWh of electricity per year. RWE Plus has approx. 2,700 employees.
SOURCE: Nuvera Fuel Cells, Inc.