Feasibility study of fuel cell residential energy stations
Author(s)Tsay, David, 1967-
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Management of Technology Program.
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Electricity provisioning has historically satisfied demand by centralized generation and pervasive distribution through an extensive transmission and distribution network. Once demand increases beyond a fixed threshold, however, the capacity of the generation, transmission and distribution can become crippled and the mal-effects of periodic brownouts and skyrocketing prices may ripple through the nationwide grid system. The traditional response to this constraint is to build new facilities. However, an alternative approach getting increased attention is to satisfy local demands by incrementally investing in distributed generation. Distributed generation facilities can be strategically sited to deliver combined heat and power (CHP) near the source of consumption at unprecedented efficiencies. Presently the distributed generation market remains largely focused on industrial and commercial peak-shaving and emergency back-up applications. The residential market is a frontier yet to be tackled. Residential electricity tariffs, in contrast, are the highest among all sectors and household users are responsible for a large proportion of the peak demand and usage growth. For residential self-generation needs, fuel cell technology is foreseen to be an ideal solution stemming from its low noise, negligible pollution and high efficiency operation. This thesis will assess the market viability of fuel cell technologies for residential distributed generation application. More specifically, the study will consider single household (5 kW) proton exchange membrane fuel cells versus hybrid solid oxide fuel cell with integrated gas turbine (10 kW) technologies for the household end-use and determine the competitiveness and sustainability of each choice.
Thesis (S.M.M.O.T.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management, Management of Technology Program, 2003.Includes bibliographical references.This electronic version was submitted by the student author. The certified thesis is available in the Institute Archives and Special Collections.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Management of Technology Program.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Management of Technology Program.