Nov 07, 2023
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Apr 27, 2022
Products & Solutions / Press Release
The facility's power generation system uses hydrogen fuel cells to power the factory
The power system integrates and controls hydrogen fuel cell generators, photovoltaic generators, and storage batteries
Osaka, Japan – Panasonic Corporation (hereinafter referred to as Panasonic) announced its plan to begin operations at its new H2 KIBOU FIELD facility on April 15, 2022. This facility was built as a demonstration of a Panasonic renewable energy solution, known as RE100 (Renewable Energy 100%)*1, in which 100% of the power used for site operations is generated from renewable resources; it is part of a self-sustaining power system that combines generation from both pure hydrogen and solar sources. This is the first*2 such demonstration in the world to make full-scale use of hydrogen fuel cells*3 toward a 100% renewable energy manufacturing site.
Panasonic has built a large demonstration facility at its Kusatsu site in Shiga Prefecture, equipped with a power generation system that combines 99 5-kW pure hydrogen fuel cell generators (495 kW) and photovoltaic generators (approx. 570 kW) as well as lithium-ion storage batteries (approx. 1.1 MWh) for storing surplus power. The power generated by this system will fully power the fuel cell factory in Kusatsu. Panasonic will continue to develop and test other technologies to optimize power supply and demand management.
This integrated system will complement the on-site solar generation, which requires a large installation area and can be impacted by weather conditions. Moreover, the integration of storage batteries enables the system to achieve a stable supply of electricity required for operations by managing the power supply from the fuel cell generators and the storage batteries, even at peak consumption.
Additionally, the integrated control of multiple 5 kW type pure hydrogen fuel cell generators enables an ample supply of high power through a flexible layout tailored to the site’s buildings and for flexible operations by managing generation according to demand. This prevents excess wear on the generators and maximizes their lifespan. In addition, it makes it possible to perform maintenance without stopping factory operations.
Through this demonstration, Panasonic will gain real-world know-how and data as well as establish a track record in energy management and pure hydrogen fuel cell generation. It will also aim to commercialize Panasonic’s RE100 solutions*1 that use renewable sources to supply 100% of the electricity required for operations.
Panasonic hopes to contribute to the effort to achieve a carbon neutral society under the banner of its long-term environmental vision “Panasonic GREEN IMPACT” by proposing new options to expand the adoption of renewable energy sources to include the full-scale use of hydrogen.*3
Panasonic will operate the H2 KIBOU FIELD facility to demonstrate a RE100 solution*1 that supplies 100% of the electricity consumed for business activities on the site from renewable sources by using a self-sustaining power generation system that combines pure hydrogen fuel cell generators and photovoltaic generators.
The power generated by this system will supply all power used in the manufacturing sites of the fuel cell factory in Kusatsu. In parallel, Panasonic will continue to develop and verify technologies relating to optimal power supply and demand management based on integrated control of the power generators and the storage batteries.
The energy management system developed by the company and using integrated control of the power generators and the storage batteries enables the power generation system to track and meet all of the site’s power needs based on the factory’s power demand data, weather forecast data (to be supported in the future), and equipment monitoring data during operation. The system also makes it possible to create power generation plans based on patterns in photovoltaic generators power output measurements. In addition, the system provides a stable, optimized power supply systematically adjusting the output of the pure hydrogen fuel cell generators and using storage batteries to address excesses or shortages.
When multiple pure hydrogen fuel cell generators are operated under integrated control, the overall time each unit spends in operation can be evened out by predicting and simulating changes in operating times for each unit to reduce variation in total operating time and minimize wear on the generators.
In addition, the installation of multiple 5 kW compact pure hydrogen fuel cell generators and controlling them individually allows the power generation system to operate flexibly, even making it possible to perform maintenance without stopping factory operations.
As a means of supplying 100% of the electricity used in the factory using renewable sources, Panasonic will begin the operation of this demonstration of its energy management system based on integrated control of pure hydrogen fuel cell generators, photovoltaic generators, and lithium-ion storage batteries on April 15, 2022.
Panasonic developed the pure hydrogen fuel cell generator used in the demonstration by leveraging the technologies developed for the ENE-FARM residential fuel cell cogeneration system.
This fuel cell generator is compact, highly efficient, and its power output can be scaled up to meet demand based on integrated control of multiple units. It can even be installed in places like on rooftops, in basements, and small spaces.
The system has been installed on a surface area equivalent to the building area of Panasonic’s fuel cell factory (Kusatsu City, Shiga Prefecture) to supply the electricity used in the factory in an effort to simulate the operation of the power generation system on a factory rooftop.
|Location||Kusatsu Site, Electric Works Company, Panasonic Corporation |
2-3-1-1 Noji-higashi, Kusatsu City, Shiga Prefecture
|Power output||Approx. 1.07 MW (495 kW from pure hydrogen fuel cell generators and approx. 570 kW from photovoltaic generators)|
|Power storage capacity||Approx. 1.1 MWh (lithium-ion storage batteries)|
|Facility area||Approx. 6,000 m2(approx. 80 m × 75 m)|
|Peak power||Approx. 680 kW|
|Annual power consumption for manufacturing||Approx. 2.7 GWh|
|Production item||ENE-FARM residential fuel cell cogeneration system|
|Building area||Approx. 4,125 m2(approx. 75 m × 55 m)|
|Power output||5 kW|
|Rated electrical efficiency||56％（LHV）|
|Main unit dimensions||834 mm（W）×417 mm（D）×1,766 mm（H） |
(including design panel)
|Weight||Approx. 205 kg (including design panel)|
|Power generation system||Mono-generation/cogeneration system|
|Method||Liquid hydrogen storage tank|
|Tank capacity||Approx. 78,000 L|
Global PR Office, Corporate PR Center, Panasonic Operational Excellence Co., Ltd.
Panasonic Corporation offers products and services for a variety of living environments, ranging from homes to stores to offices and cities. There are five businesses at the core of Panasonic Corporation: Living Appliances and Solutions Company, Heating & Ventilation A/C Company, Cold Chain Solutions Company, Electric Works Company, and China and Northeast Asia Company. The operating company reported consolidated net sales of 3,548.9 billion yen for the year ended March 31, 2021. Panasonic Corporation is committed to fulfilling the mission of Life Tech & Ideas: For the well-being of people, society, and the planet, and embraces the vision of becoming the best partner of your life with human-centric technology and innovation.
Learn more about Panasonic: https://www.panasonic.com/global/about/
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