Colocation provider Teledata is installing 1.2MW of Bloom Energy's solid oxide fuel cells at its data center in Manchester. These are reportedly the first Bloom fuel cells installed in the European market.

The fuel cells will be installed by Conrad Energy, which signed a deal in November, along with Electricity North West (Construction and Maintenance) Limited (ENWCML) to bring the products to the UK market. Conrad Energy will fully fund the installation of the efficient hydrogen-ready Bloom fuel cells, potentially allowing Teledata to switch to fuel cells and thence to green hydrogen, when that is available.

Teledata will use a power purchase agreement (PPA) to fund the supply of gas for the fuel cells.

"It is becoming incredibly important for data centers to take control of their energy supply, both for technical and commercial certainty and for sustainability reasons. This solution not only reduces our carbon emissions through a cleaner, hydrogen-ready fuel supply, but it also gives us a second power feed into the facility from a completely different fuel source - a European data center industry first," says Matt Edgley, Director, Teledata. "This level of resilience running in parallel with the existing mains supply will give our clients even more certainty when hosting business-critical equipment at our data centers."

The deal comes very quickly after Conrad's announcement of its distribution deal with Bloom and ENWCML, at the end of November. Mark Kelly, Conrad Energy's head of power solutions said: "Forward-thinking companies like Teledata recognize the need to future-proof their energy supply whilst taking control of their energy costs. On-site generation from fuel cells is a viable solution which is available today. The fuel cells will operate under a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) which brings real added value, helping Teledata on their path to net-zero carbon emissions."

Charles Hesketh, ENWCML market sector manager was also pleased: "Not only is it our first project, but also Bloom Energy's first foray into the European market. To be able to bring this exciting technology to the UK is a mark of our intention to be at the forefront of new technologies. Teledata's vision to adopt this solution at their Manchester site is testament to their energy strategy and one that we are sure others will adopt."

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