Shell Hydrogen and Siemens Westinghouse have agreed to develop and market fuel cell technology. The companies will combine the solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC) that has been developed by Siemens Westinghouse with the CO2 sequestration technology that is currently being developed by Shell.

SOFC power plants will produce only water and CO2 as byproducts. The CO2 will be injected into depleted oil and gas reservoirs. The CO2 will remain permanently sequestered, replacing the hydrocarbons that had previously been trapped naturally underground.

Siemens Westinghouse has proven the SOFC technology with over 69 000 hours under laboratory testing, and a successful 100 kWe demonstration plant in the Netherlands. The first commercial units will have an output range of 250 kWe to 10 MWe. Shell intends to use the new technology to produce electricity for its own oil and gas production operations.

In addition to this, RWE has announced that it will be building an SOFC plant in cooperation with Siemens Westinghouse. With a capacity of 300 kW, it will be the first of its kind in Europe.