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HELION develops SYSPAC®, a fuel cell emergency power system

News brief

ACTIVITIES / NUCLEAR POWER

November 25, 2005

Two years after the 5 kWe Helps generator was introduced and just one year after the startup of its 20 kWe fuel cell, Helion, an AREVA subsidiary, has made another technological breakthrough in the fuel cell sector. With its SYSPAC® product line, HELION has achieved a world first: the development of a fuel cell-based electrical back-up system with 20 kWe of power.

The SYSPAC® project followed all of the stages of a solid industrial approach, including development of key components of the technology, fabrication of a medium power prototype as part of the European Helps program, and fabrication of a 20 kWe integrated prototype. In 2006, a complete, full-power generator will be demonstrated in actual operations.

Compared with existing solutions using batteries and diesel generators, SYSPAC® offers notable advantages in terms of reliability, rapid startup, autonomy and ease of maintenance. It is environmental-friendly since it doesn't emit release greenhouse gases.

SYSPAC® is aimed at applications in which a continuous source of power is vital and/or a safety requirement. Professionals in the telecommunications, industrial computing, health, process and defense industries are the primary targets.

Helion's latest success is part of the AREVA group's strategy to develop high-tech, CO2-free solutions for producing energy.

Some technical information on SYSPAC®:

  • Technology: an integrated fuel cell-based system with a proton exchange membrane (PEM) stack designed with a process unit and an electric unit.
  • Overall dimensions:
    • Process unit: 160 x 100 x 140 mm
    • Electric unit: 145 x 80 x 190 mm
  • Weight: 700 kg for the process unit and 600 kg for the electric unit.
  • Mode of operation: silent, easily transportable, SYSPAC® operates automatically in a pure hydrogen-oxygen mode with a very high level of reliability and availability. The only effluent produced is water.
  • Nominal available electric power to the user can range from 20 kWe today to 50 kWe soon, in constant direct current mode or alternating current mode (coupled to an industrial uninterruptible backup supply).

More about

HELION, a subsidiary of Technicatome of the AREVA group, designs, fabricates and markets power and thermal generators for aerobic and anaerobic applications combining safety and environmental friendliness. HELION offers CO2-free power generation solutions, whether onboard or decentralized, to ensure continuous power supply and system safety.

TECHNICATOME, a subsidiary of the AREVA group, designs, fabricates, operates and ensures the operational readiness of power supply systems for naval propulsion and guided transport safety systems, ground and onboard. A member of the Reactors & Services division of AREVA, TECHNICATOME offers customers engineering, products and services combining safety, availability and reliability for each stage in the life cycle of the plants it serves. TECHNICATOME represents 15% of the sales revenue of AREVA's Reactors & Services division and employs 2,000 people.