Fuel cell technology has a potential for rural electrification both in the U.S. and for developing countries. This technology would allow the use of renewable energy around the clock regardless of location. The opportunity exists to electrify 2.1 billion people without electricity. For example, providing electricity at the village level can result in vaccinations, refrigeration, water pumps for fresh well water, internet connections, cellular phone towers, and with computers available for a few hundred dollars could link children from around the globe. Village farmers could study on-line for better irrigation methods, understand weather patterns and communicate with experts world-wide regarding numerous local social, economic, and agricultural issues.
GEI will seek to provide fuel cell energy solutions for developing countries that leverage renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, and bio fuels. Through utilizing renewable energy sources, fuel cells can become an economical source of power, heat, and water and can contribute rapidly toward the improvement of economic, health, agricultural, and social conditions for the 60% of the world's population without affordable and plentiful power.
GEI believes its distinctive characteristics will be:
Our vision is that GEI will become the largest fuel cell auxiliary power provider worldwide with annual gross revenues of $50 million in five (5) years. We believe this vision is achievable due to our "Blue Ocean" strategy supporting common fuel cell power systems that are customer centric and applicable across multiple industry sectors. Our targets are ten times the combined total U.S. APU market today and will drive the entire fuel cell component supply chain worldwide. Additionally, the high volume manufacturing will provide much needed high-tech jobs for mid-Michigan, improve the overall quality of life, and establish the first high volume fuel cell systems manufacturer in Michigan. As we go to market, we will utilize strategic partnerships to deliver our customers with a complete end-to-end solution to address all of their unique power requirements.
We intend that GEI be known as a leader for innovation in fuel cell systems engineering and for developing products and strategies that both improve the social and economic quality of life for millions and help to accelerate the commercialization of the hydrogen and fuel cell economy world-wide.
The GEI X5 is a “hybrid” fuel cell APU that incorporates a high temperature PEM fuel cell and a high-energy density Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) battery. Although fuel cell systems typically have a higher energy density compared with traditional batteries, fuel cell systems alone do not have the peak power and load following capabilities of a battery. Therefore, it is necessary for most applications to incorporate a hybrid fuel cell/battery system to benefit from the strengths of both technologies. Because batteries are excellent at satisfying high instant power demands, fuel cell power systems can be sized to meet average power requirements for any given application to achieve maximum efficiency. A fuel cell power system can then be combined with a battery (or other energy storage systems such as ultra capacitors), creating a hybrid system in which the fuel cell provides sufficient power for battery charging during low power demands. The battery or energy storage system can then handle the instant power demands, provide for instant start capability, and most importantly, provide for smooth quasi-transient fuel processor operations. It can not be underestimated the importance of hybrid systems when combined with fuel processors. Since fuel processors are not able to respond instantly to changing load demands, systems without an energy storage media results in an exceptionally difficult control strategy. Alternatively, with energy storage the fuel processor need only respond to “average” load demands rather than instantaneous demands and provides for less complicated and more reliable control systems. Finally, hybrid fuel cell power systems are inherently more fuel efficient and are a more cost effective solution.