National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Day (10.08) was created to help raise awareness of a clean energy technology that is here now. We’re celebrating all week. This project highlights real-world applications for these solutions, today.
Plug Power GenSure Provides Power Hive for Stone Edge Farm Micro-Grid
By Gary Flood, VP International Sales
Stone Edge Farm wanted to see how far they could reduce the carbon footprint of their 16-acre organic winery and farm, located in Sonoma, Calif. Their initial goal was a 50 percent reduction, which they reached in the first year. Now, the winery is trying to see how far below a zero carbon footprint they can go.
Photo: Stone Edge Farm
Stone Edge operates its own state-of-the-art micro-grid consisting of a number of clean technologies working in conjunction to provide sustainable energy for facility operations. One component of the micro-grid is a hive of Plug Power GenSure fuel cells, which produce 26kW to power Stone Edge’s “critical grid”. This critical grid powers their servers, fiber, Ethernet, gates, alarms and security lighting. Hydrogen for the GenSure fuel cells, and for multiple fuel cell vehicles operated by Stone Edge, is provided by an electrolyzer, which is powered by a solar array.
The micro-grid project, developed by Wooster Engineering Specialties, a general engineering contractor specializing in alternative energy, combines a number of off-grid energy solutions with peak shaving and load shifting services to Stone Edge Farm for energy self-sufficiency and carbon footprint reduction. The grid-tied micro-grid is capable of islanding and operating continuously and autonomously, and is also generating extra energy so that Stone Edge Farm is able to sell a substantial amount of this energy back to local utility, PG&E.
“The Stone Edge Farm MicroGrid Project is governed by what we call the Prime Directive: Any technology we deploy, and any system we install, must reduce the carbon footprint at Stone Edge Farm,” said Craig Wooster, Micro-grid Project Manager at Stone Edge Farm. “Our Plug Power hydrogen fuel cell hive provides clean, highly reliable electricity that we use to power our critical grid. Our goal with this project is to demonstrate the variety of clean energy solutions that can be used to provide power to a campus or even an area of a city. The fuel cells are an important component of that mission.”
Photo: Stone Edge Farm
Projects like the Stone Edge micro-grid are exactly the kind of innovation Plug Power envisions for a future when hydrogen and fuel cells will be abundant globally. Today’s fuel cell users are professionals in industries including food manufacturing and distribution, retail distribution and automotive manufacturing, telecommunications, utilities and railroads. These industry professionals independently complete a hydrogen refueling every 9 seconds – that’s more than 3 million refuelings completed over the last two years just with our GenFuel hydrogen offering.
“Enabling hydrogen energy adoption into the future means harnessing our strengths and embracing the opportunities to continually develop cost-effective, repeatable, ubiquitous hydrogen solutions that we can deliver to more and more adjacent markets, including micro-grids,” said Andy Marsh, CEO at Plug Power.
A solution that is zero emission, zero carbon footprint and reliable enough to trust critical equipment to – that’s a clean energy microgrid – that’s Plug Power GenSure fuel cells. We continue to power possibilities, with Infinite Drive. #InfiniteDrive