Articles & Case Studies

Met Office trials fuel cell for remote power

Posted: Friday 23rd March 2012

UPS Systems has supplied the Met Office with a Commpac 500 hydrogen fuel cell. The Met Office is trialling the unit at its weather monitoring station in Camborne, Cornwall to evaluate the fuel cell’s suitability for providing independent power to remote locations.

The Met Office is renting the Commpac 500 fuel cell for an initial one-month period. It will use the fuel cell in one of its palletised weather stations, which are deployed in remote locations, so the Met Office can test its suitability for powering telemetry and other equipment that doesn’t have easy access to the National Grid.

The Commpac 500 weighs 150kg and can generate 500W of power. UPS Systems has configured the system so it can be left for a year without the need to refuel. The system is also equipped with a remote monitoring system to provide the Met Office with live data about all aspects of the system.

“Met Office experiments often take place in remote locations for short periods. The benefits of this fuel cell is that it is commercially available, it can be hired and negates the need to source a convention power supply,” said Geoff Hooper, Head of Technical Services, Property Management at the Met Office.

Tom Sperrey, Managing Director of UPS Systems commented, “This project is another great example of a fuel cell being used in a real-world application. The Commpac 500 was built specifically to provide prime power to remote locations, so the Met Office’s weather station is the ideal application. We’re hopeful that this installation will help to raise the profile of fuel cells and make the technology more accepted as a portable source of prime power.”

The Commpac 500 is available to lease from UPS Systems.

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