Panasonic Corp. and Tokyo Gas Co. have jointly developed a new version of their Ene-Farm home fuel cell that cuts the cost by about $8,500.
Panasonic manufactures the fuel cell and supplies it to Tokyo Gas, in combination with a hot water unit and backup heat source that are produced by Tokyo Gas subsidiary Gastar Co. The new fuel cell model will be available from Tokyo Gas starting April 1, 2013.
The price of the new product will be 1,995,000 yen or about US$22,300 - a price that includes the standard backup heat source and taxes but des not include installation. This is about 760,000 yen, or $8,500, less than the retail price of the Ene-Farm model currently on the market.
The lower cost was made possible by reducing the number of components in the unit. The new fuel cell achieved an overall efficiency of 95.0% (LHV) - the world's highest, according to Panasonic research.
LHV stands for Lower Heating Value. The value is obtained by subtracting the heat of vaporization of the water vapor from the total heat generated when the gas fuel is fully combusted. (Compared to HHV, or Higher Heating Value = 0.903
to Daily News