Could Bloom Box revolutionize power industry?

Google, eBay are trying out the new energy device that will be unveiled Wednesday

A Silicon Valley start-up is getting ready to unveil an energy device this week that executives say could one day power individual homes and businesses while replacing the traditional power grid.

Bloom Energy, one of the 26 companies named in the World Economic Forum's list of top 2010 Tech Pioneers , took some of the wraps off its Bloom Box in a story that ran last night on the CBS television show 60 Minutes .

An interview with K.R. Sridhar, CEO of Bloom Energy, during the piece has created significant online buzz, including descriptions of the Bloom Box device as the "Holy Grail of clean energy."

Bloom Energy is expected to unveil the new device on Wednesday.

Sridhar said the box is mostly a collection of fuel cells that use oxygen and fuel to create electricity without creating any emissions. Oxygen is drawn into one side of the cell, while a fuel, such as a natural gas or bio-fuel, is drawn into the other side. The two combine within the cell and produce a chemical reaction that creates energy without any burning or combustion.

Sridhar said in the interview with 60 Minutes he's hoping that within 10 years Bloom Boxes are placed in backyards or basements to power homes. He estimated the cost of systems for individual homes at about $3,000.

Sridhar also noted that 20 corporate big hitters, including FedEx Corp., Wal-Mart Stores Inc, eBay Inc. and Google Inc. are already using Bloom Boxes on a trial basis.

Google spokeswoman Niki Fenwick said in an e-mail to Computerworld that an undisclosed number of Bloom Boxes installed at the company are already supplying a "portion" of the energy needs at its Mountain View campus.

"This is just another on-site renewable energy source that we're exploring to help power our facilities," she added. "We have a 400 kilowatt [Bloom Box] installation on Google's main campus that delivers clean and affordable power. Over the first 18 months, the project has had 98% availability and delivered 3.8 million kilowatts of electricity."

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Power ManagementBloom BoxGoogleebay

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Sharon Gaudin

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?