Monday, February 22, 2010

$400 million and 8 years later... the Bloombox cometh?

Having raised an eye popping $400 million dollars, the Bloombox, a fuel cell is launching on Wednesday. Fuel cells currently in development are something to pay attention to - and success is all dependent on whether or not they can get the costs of production down to economical levels. That's where skeptics have their greatest doubts.

While they haven't released any numbers that I've been able to find, during his interview with CBS's 60 Minutes, the founder KR Sridhar hopes to have one of these boxes (roughly smaller than a loaf of bread) power every home in North America in 5 to 10 years. Definitely can't fault him for his ambition.

Watch CBS News Videos Online

I'm quite hopeful and optimistic that there will be at least one green technology that will become viable in meeting our energy needs to the point of self sufficiency (and relatively soon) - but it'll all depend on the economics. The technology will become sustainable because of the economics not because of government fiat and that's a good thing.

See more at CBS and CNN.

Update - A Business Week article suggests that it's not yet economical (December 7, 2009) though according to their 60 minutes segment, they're taking advantage of the subsidies in the meantime:
"Sridhar figures it will take three to five years before Bloom boxes reach "grid parity" for home use, or price competitiveness with traditional residential-scale electric supplies.

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