So that additional FC heating devices go into use throughout Europe, work is currently underway on a successor program to the currently existing ene.field project. Its goal is to achieve a further reduction in the costs of micro-CHP units (of approx. 30%). The new program aims to constitute the second demonstration step for manufacturers of all types of FC. To this end, financial resources in total of approx. EUR 30 to 40 m. might be provided by the EU so that every manufacturer is able to install around 500 additional devices (< 5kW). In total, 2,500 new systems are to be brought into use and their running time extended. Moreover, the profile of the FC heating devices is also to be raised. An appropriate call for proposals was started by the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) on 5th May 2015 as part of the Horizon 2020 program.
In the current ene.field demonstration project, 1,000 units have been subsidized by up to 40% in twelve EU countries (in total, 53 m. Euro over 5 years) since September 2012. Project Coordinator Fiona Riddoch admitted that ene.field “had got off to a slow start,” but also stated with confidence that “the project is now on the right path”. The new edition of the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking (FCH 2 JU) is to have a total funding volume of EUR 123 m. and covers the areas of both the transportation and the electrolysis.