American Honda Motor Company will work with Massachusetts based Climate Energy, LLC to bring a unique and innovative new form of home heat and power technology to market, the company announced today. The system uses micro combined heat and power (MCHP) cogeneration technology with natural gas to provide residential heat more efficiently than ever before, with the added benefit of producing electric power.
Honda will supply its compact home-use cogeneration unit to Climate Energy who will combine it with a furnace or boiler, and market the entire system as an alternative to conventional space heating and electric power in new and existing homes. Working in coordination with state and local authorities as well as energy utilities, limited in-home field test installations will occur by late 2005, with more widespread distribution planned from fall 2006.
"MCHP technology will provide residential consumers with new levels of comfort and energy efficiency, while reducing their utility bills," said Wade Terry, vice president of Honda Power Equipment, which is American Honda's division responsible for overseeing its involvement in the project. "Honda is a name consumers already associate with reliable, forward-thinking technologies like hybrid automobiles, natural gas automobiles, and hydrogen fuel cells, so this is a good fit for us. Ultimately, we think that this technology might set a new direction for the future of home heat and power."
The Honda unit's compact design consists of a small natural gas-powered internal combustion engine developed specifically for this application, and a small electrical generation system that utilizes Honda's sine wave inverter technology. Designed primarily for detached single-family homes, the unit will generate up to three kilowatts of thermal output per hour and one kilowatt of electricity, while delivering ultra-quiet operation with minimal vibration.
The complete Climate Energy Micro-CHP system, powered by the Honda MCHP unit, results in more than 85 percent efficiency in converting fuel energy into useful heat and electric power. This represents a very large improvement over conventional heating appliances and grid-supplied electric power, and will ultimately provide consumers with a substantial savings in their heating and electrical bills. In certain markets, the system will even deliver the ability to sell power back to the grid at full retail value.
Consistent with Honda's reputation for environmental responsibility, the system is also expected to yield a 30 percent reduction in harmful carbon dioxide emissions as compared with conventional heating appliances and grid supplied electricity.
A similar version of Honda's cogeneration unit has been available for general use in Japan since March of 2003, and is now in more than 15,000 homes, lending the technology a track record of reliability.
Honda is the world's preeminent maker of engines for automobiles, motorcycles, and power equipment, selling more than 19 million units globally in 2004. Honda engines are characterized by the same clean, quiet, fuel-efficient technology that is behind the company's unparalleled reputation for durability, quality, and reliability.
Honda Power Equipment, a division of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., manufactures and markets a complete range of outdoor power equipment, including outboard marine engines, general purpose engines, generators, lawnmowers, pumps, snowblowers, tillers and trimmers for commercial, rental and residential applications. Its comprehensive product line consists exclusively of environmentally advanced 4-stroke engines.
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