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Petition No. 711
PPL Distributed Generation, LLC
1414 Blue Hills Avenue
Bloomfield, Connecticut
Staff Report
May 11, 2005

On March 28, 2005, the Connecticut Siting Council (Council) received a petition (Petition) from PPL Distributed Generation, LLC (PPL) for a declaratory ruling that no certificate is required for the proposed installation of a 250-kW fuel cell at 1414 Blue Hills Avenue, Bloomfield. The fuel cell would be installed behind the Pepperidge Farm Inc. building and would provide electricity for use in the building and would also pre-heat boiler water for use in Pepperidge Farm’s food processing.

The fuel cell would be approximately 30’2" long, 9’6" wide and 10’ high and would run on natural gas. The fuel cell would be installed on a concrete pad and would have bollards installed around it to protect the unit from being accidentally struck by a vehicle. The heat recovery unit, which facilitates the use of the fuel cell’s waste heat to pre-heat boiler water, would be placed on a separate concrete pad. The heat recovery unit would be surrounded by fencing to protect against accidental contact with hot water lines. The gas, electric, and water lines would be run underground to reach the building in order to protect against accidental damage. The fuel cell would only provide electricity for internal use in the building. (Equipment would be deployed to protect against accidentally feeding the fuel cell’s power into the outside grid.)

The proposed location of the fuel cell and heat recovery unit has been changed by the applicant. Facing the rear of the building, the proposed fuel cell and heat recovery unit would be shifted (~13’6") to the right (northeast) from the location originally proposed in the application. (The orientation of the unit would be changed also, by rotating it 180 degrees.) Thus, staff requested a revised site plan, and it was received on April 28, 2005. Copies were then mailed to Council members.

The site is located to the rear of an industrial building, and there are no homes in the vicinity of the site. The noise rating on the fuel cell is 65 dBA at ten feet. Given the large size of the Pepperidge Farm property, noise emissions at the property boundaries due to the fuel cell are expected to be negligible due to the distance. No new land would be disturbed, as the fuel cell site is an existing concrete loading area.

This petition was field reviewed by Council member Dan Lynch and Mike Perrone of the Council staff on April 25, 2005. Also present at the field review was John Mazzali, Project Engineer from PPL. As observed during the field review, no construction had yet been performed. Construction would begin in June 2005 and would be completed on or before September 15, 2005.