Bloom reports SOFC market lead

17 August 2023

SOFC company Bloom Energy says it is “by far” the market leader in the stationary fuel cell market according to a new report from Frost & Sullivan, Stationary fuel cell growth opportunities, which notes, according to Bloom that it “has dominated the stationary solid oxide fuel cell market since it commercialised the technology in 2010.” The report also says that solid oxide is the leading technology for stationary fuel cells.

Above: Bloom Energy SOFC installation

The USA, Japan, and South Korea will remain the leading markets for stationary fuel cells, the report says, and Bloom has a significant market presence in both the USA and South Korea.

The stationary fuel cell market consists of approximately 50 active players, but the top four account for 85.2% of total installed capacity, according to Frost & Sullivan. With a 44% global market share, Bloom leads the top four companies, followed by Doosan-HyAxiom, FuelCell Energy and Panasonic.

“Our analysis shows the prospect of robust growth in stationary fuel cells and that it will happen in markets where Bloom Energy is already present,” says Jonathan Robinson, the author of the report. “Solid oxide fuel cells, Bloom’s signature technology, will continue to be the leading factor in the market’s expansion.”

Frost & Sullivan says that data centres are the key to future fuel cell market growth, and Bloom is already well positioned in that sector. Data centres are energy intensive and their operators are both looking to get power according to a timetable that local electric utilities can’t meet and secure low carbon energy sources to reduce their use of fossil fuels.

“There has never been a more perfect situation for Bloom than the data centre market,” says Jeff Barber, vice president of sales - global data centres, at Bloom Energy. “These customers are in the business of providing access to significant amounts of reliable power, and that access is now sporadic and, many times, inadequate. Bloom has the reliable and predictable power solution these critical facilities demand, with or without a utility presence. Many utilities are quoting these customers 6 to 10 years for additional generation, transmission, and sub-station capacity. Bloom eliminates this ‘time to power’ barrier, enabling the developers and their tenants to bring the facility online years ahead of the centralised utility.”

Among recent SOFC orders reported by Bloom Energy is a 2.5 MW installation for Perenco to be installed at Wytch Farm in Dorset, England, the largest onshore oil field in western Europe, where it will be used to support Perenco’s baseload requirements. It will be the first deployment of Bloom fuel cell technology in the UK.

Bloom sees the agreement with Perenco as another major step in its expansion in Europe, following a recent sales agreement for northern Europe with Elugie, a marketing partnership agreement with Telam for Spain and Portugal, and SOFC sales to Cefla and Ferrari in Italy announced in 2022.

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