AFC Energy (AIM: AFC), the industrial fuel cell power company, is pleased to announce it has signed a strategic engineering partnership and services agreement (the “Engineering Agreement”) with Germany-based engineering consultancy plantIng GmbH (“plantIng”) to support the optimisation and rollout of AFC Energy’s alkaline fuel cell system.
With over 300 engineers and technicians, plantlng is already one of the biggest independent provider of engineering projects in the chemical and petrochemical industries in Germany and plantIng has provided engineering support and Engineering Procurement Construction Management (“EPCM”) services to AFC Energy’s POWER-UP project at Stade for over a year. PlantIng therefore has deep knowledge and understanding of AFC Energy’s fuel cell technology and to date these joint efforts with AFC Energy have enabled the successful commissioning of the first industrial scale alkaline fuel cell system in Germany last month.
The Engineering Agreement includes a significant investment by plantIng of their time and resources in supporting AFC Energy in addressing the identified deployment opportunities that exist in Germany, Europe and internationally. Under the agreement, plantIng is incentivised to drive further project development opportunities for AFC Energy’s fuel cell system amongst its existing and prospective client base, further leveraging the potential partnering opportunities for the two companies and providing a faster commercial rollout of AFC Energy’s fuel cell systems.
For AFC Energy, the Engineering Agreement will allow the Company to concentrate in the short term on the further commercial refinement of its alkaline fuel cell technology, while utilising the resources and experience of plantIng to refine the fuel cell Balance of Plant (“BoP”) of varying sizes and the associated plant infrastructure design for future commercial fuel cell plant projects. PlantIng has also agreed to provide engineering support services on several feasibility studies for commercial fuel cell projects currently under evaluation by AFC Energy.
The scope of the agreement will focus on three primary areas:
- Assisting AFC Energy with the fuel cell BoP, so as to generate product/package/costed solutions for optimised designs ranging from 240kW to initially 1MWe hydrogen fuel cell projects, based on the outcomes of ;
- Undertaking feasibility studies in conjunction with AFC Energy for commercial fuel cell projects globally; and
- Providing a basic engineering design package for a template fuel cell plant project housing AFC Energy’s fuel cell cartridges, together with all the requisite infrastructure, utilities and building services.
Dieter Hofmann, plantIng’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “A successful co-operation between AFC Energy and plantIng will now be pursued on a long-term basis. The synergy of AFC Energy’s technology and development competence and the process and plant engineering competence of plantIng are a perfect fit, as shown in the past at Stade and as we expect to be practiced into the future. We are happy to support the further implementation of a well-developed fuel cell technology in the German and international energy and process related markets.”
Adam Bond, AFC Energy’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “I’ve come to know plantIng very well over the past twelve months and have been extremely impressed by their professionalism, commitment, timeliness and unyielding support for AFC Energy in seeing us achieve our ambitious fast tracked goals for the POWER-UP project in Germany. This agreement today marks the start of a longer term relationship with plantIng, which will see AFC Energy access the expertise of one of Germany’s most respected process engineering houses. This marks a new start for the outsourcing of non-core engineering services required for the optimisation of AFC Energy’s fuel cell system design ready for commercialisation.”
Bond further commented: “The decision of plantIng to back AFC Energy’s technology through a material investment of time and efforts at limited, or in some cases no cost, to AFC Energy, together with their knowledge and understanding of AFC Energy’s technology provides a further validation of the opportunities we now see into the German, European and international market place for AFC Energy’s fuel cell. I’m very pleased to welcome plantIng to the AFC Energy team.”