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Bloom Energy readies hydrogen electrolyzer

Megan Hernbroth
Aug 12, 2022
Illustration of the Earth as the center of a hydrogen atom.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Bloom Energy, a solid oxide fuel cell maker, is gearing up its hydrogen electrolyzer business, the company's CFO tells Axios.

Why it matters: Bloom has promised a move from natural gas to hydrogen as part of the company's long-term plan to create a cleaner source of energy.

State of play: Bloom Energy CFO Greg Cameron says that the hydrogen-based fuel cell is ready for prime time, but there's no hydrogen available to power it.

  • Instead, the company is working on an initial contract with an ammonia maker in Oklahoma that uses Bloom's electrolyzer to break water molecules into oxygen and hydrogen.
  • Cameron says the contract is for 10 MW and will contribute to green ammonia production using wind and solar power.
  • Bloom is not pursuing pilot programs for its electrolyzer, and Cameron says it is not considering signing letters of intent. Instead, it's focusing on larger scale installations that can provide proof of concept.

What we're watching: Bloom is working on a project with the Department of Energy to pull heat from nuclear reactors to more efficiently power its electrolyzers.

Of note: Cameron says there are early signs that the supply chain crunch is easing for semiconductors and logistics, but didn't feel comfortable extrapolating with just a few weeks' worth of data.

  • If it holds, however, a lot of the pressure on Bloom and its competitors could ease, setting up an aggressive sales cycle in the second half of the year.
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