Forest Service Uses SOFCs to Innovate in the Face of Climate Change

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service recently published an article highlighting the department’s use of Adaptive Energy’s solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) to innovate in the face of climate change and extreme weather.

Stacy Griffith, Alaska Region Radio Manager, shared the results of Forest Service Alaska upgrading more than half of their radio communications sites with SOFCs. Performance outcomes included:

  • 3x increase in efficiency over internal combustion engines
  • Pollution-free power solution with only water and carbon dioxide waste products
  • Reduction in flight time and dangerous trips to mountaintops for refueling

“This ultimately saves money, time, and risk,” Griffith said.

According to the USDA:

“Before the fuel cells, the Region’s radio towers used legacy generators that ran 24/7 off natural gas costing about $90,000 a year for refueling. Another cost observation showed the SOFC needing only $30 of fuel compared to the generator that averaged more than $7,000 per season.”

Adaptive Energy’s P250i SOFC, which the USDA refers to as an “ingenious device,” was developed exactly for these use cases where quiet, clean, efficient and rugged power is necessary. Whether dealing with forest fires or freezing temperatures, it’s vital that organizations can depend on their power system.

y saves money, time, and risk,” Griffith said.

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