On October 11, 2017,  COGEN Europe and FCH JU officially introduced the PACE project at Autoworld in Brussels, to more than 100 participants from the heating and energy industry, policymakers, academia, press and civil society. The PACE project aims to move the Fuel Cell micro-Cogeneration technology — a highly efficient, innovative and sustainable energy system that simultaneously produces heat and electricity for homes and small businesses — to mass market commercialisation. During the day-long event, participants also discussed PACE’s successful predecessor, the ene.field project that installed more than 1,000 units in houses and small businesses in 10 European countries, and debated the potential and challenges of Fuel Cell micro-Cogeneration in Europe. In comparison 1.4 million esidential fuel cells installations are foreseen in the Japanese program“ene-farm” by 2020 and 5.3 million by 2030.

The PACE project (Pathway to a Competitive European Fuel Cell micro-CHP Market) is a 90 million Euro public-private partnership aimed at ensuring that Fuel Cell micro-Cogeneration in Europe becomes mainstream in the residential market. 37% of the total funding comes from the European Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU), the remaining part is covered by the industrial partners.

“Major European manufacturers, supported by the FCH JU at the EU level and key European national governments, are now committed to bringing the technology closer to mass market by increasing scale and achieving further product cost reductions. PACE will enable manufacturers to establish Fuel Cell micro-Cogeneration as a standard technology”, said Hans Korteweg, Managing Director of COGEN Europe, the Coordinator of the PACE project.

PACE started in 2016 and aims at installing at least 2,500 units by 2021, as part of a manufacturing transition to higher volumes in the order of 10,000 units per year after 2020. This is two and a half times more units installed than during PACE’s preceding project ene.field. During this period PACE will build upon the success of the ene.field project and help manufacturers by reducing costs, improving product performance, establishing Fuel Cell micro-Cogeneration as a standard technology, raising awareness on Fuel Cell micro-Cogeneration, and demonstrating product readiness as a key component in the delivery of Europe’s energy goals.