IDC Energy Insights Senior Research Analyst Sam Jaffe said that the fuel cell technology created by Bloom Energy has a lot of money spent on research and development around it, but it is not necessarily “unique.” “They have clearly spent a lot of money on research and developing this product, but there’s nothing that I can see that is that unique about it,” said Jaffe as reported by CNET. Bloom Energy introduced a fuel cell that is designed to have small blocks housed in a unit that is the size of a refrigerator and can be sold as an electricity alternative. 100kW units of the technology is selling for about $700,000-$800,000 each. These “Bloom boxes” are being used by major corporations including Google and eBay.
“Any high-temperature fuel cell should be able to do that. The fact that it’s solid oxide and it’s primarily ceramic opens up the possibility of making it much more cheaply, but every start-up in the energy field has an expensive product that they claim one day will be cheap. There is no reason to believe that Bloom has the ability to make it that much more cheaply. I’m pretty pessimistic about it,” added Jaffe. [CNET]