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Ceramic Fuel Cells and Japanese heavyweights form alliance

Dual-listed Ceramic Fuel Cells (AIM/ASX: CFU) has taken a major step forward today with a partnership with leading Japanese companies Mitsui & Co. and Osaka Gas.

CFU is a developer of high efficiency and low emission electricity generation units for homes and other buildings.

Mitsui & Co. has ordered a Ceramic Fuel Cells BlueGen gas-to-electricity unit, to be tested and demonstrated by Osaka Gas at its testing facility in Osaka.

Ceramic Fuel Cells’ BlueGen product can generate up to 2 kilowatts of electricity with a peak electrical efficiency of up to 60 percent.

Osaka Gas is a leader in developing and selling home power and heating products in Japan.

Since 2003 Osaka Gas has sold more than 56,000 co-generation products to residential customers. These products use internal combustion technology to generate up to 1 kilowatt of electricity with an electrical efficiency of 22.5 percent.

Ceramic Fuel Cells’ BlueGen product can generate up to 2 kilowatts of electricity with a peak electrical efficiency of up to 60 percent.

Founded in 1905, Osaka Gas is one of the top seven gas companies in the world, with 2009 revenues of US$13 billion and 19,000 staff.

Mitsui & Co is one of Japan’s leading trading companies, with more than 39,000 employees in 65 countries. Mitsui & Co. has global operations in product sales, worldwide logistics and financing, the development of international infrastructure and other projects. Mitsui & Co. has a long established focus on energy including renewables and fuel cells.

By generating power close to where it is used, Ceramic Fuel Cells’ products can meet the future demand for electricity without the need for huge investments in electricity transmission and distribution infrastructure.

Brendan Dow, Ceramic Fuel Cells’ managing director says, “We are delighted to have Osaka Gas as our first utility customer in Japan, in addition to our current appliance partner Paloma."

He said Japan is a leading market for fuel cells, with more fuel cell systems installed in homes than in any other country and Osaka Gas is one of the leaders in this market.

Disclosure: The author holds no positions in the company