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Adobe fuel cell installation blooms in San Francisco

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Bloom box installation will contribute about 35 percent of location's energy needs; marks the software company's third major onsite renewable energy installation.

Software developer Adobe Systems has installed two Bloom Energy fuel cells that it estimates will provide about 35 percent of the electricity needs for its San Francisco office.

In a blog by the company's facilities director, Michael Bangs, Adobe said that it has completed the installation of two 200-kilowatt-capacity Bloom boxes. The technology, sometimes described as energy servers, use biofuels or natural gas to generate electricity, allowing commercial accounts to take at least part of their power procurement needs off the grid.

In a location such as northern California, where energy costs are particular high, there are a number of high-profile companies experimenting with fuel cells from Bloom and several other players, including FuelCellEnergy and UTC Power. ("Energy-in-a-box: More businesses try prime fuel cells.")

Adobe already uses 12 100-kilowatt Bloom boxes at its headquarters in San Jose, contributing about 30 percent of its energy needs. The site also boasts an installation of 20 Windspire units. These are propeller-free, vertical-axis wind turbines that are 30 feet tall, 4 feet wide and 650 pounds each. The units are on a sixth floor patio that is also a rooftop garden area.

(Image courtesy of Adobe Systems)

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Heather Clancy

Section Editor

Heather Clancy has written for United Press International, ZDNet, Entrepreneur, Fortune Small Business, the International Herald Tribune and the New York Times. She holds a degree from McGill University. She is based in New Jersey. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure