CommScope deploys hydrogen fuel cell technology for CableLabs

CommScope has deployed its hydrogen fuel cell technology to CableLabs, the non-profit research and development consortium for the cable television industry.

CommScope has deployed its hydrogen fuel cell technology to CableLabs, the non-profit research and development consortium for the cable television industry. CommScope's fuel cell solution, which can provide up to 16 hours of reliable, environmentally friendly backup power, is supporting CableLabs' head-end and cable modem termination system at its headquarters in Louisville, Colorado.

"By incorporating fuel cell technology into our infrastructure, CommScope is helping CableLabs take a leadership role in demonstrating how cable operators can continue to provide business and enterprise class services in an environmentally friendly manner," comments Chris Lammers, executive vice president and chief operating officer, CableLabs.

The deployed platform uses hydrogen powered fuel cells to provide an environmentally-friendly backup power solution for CableLabs' broadband network sites, including cable network head-ends and hub equipment. Unlike diesel generators that consume fossil fuels and emit carbon dioxide, the only by-products of hydrogen fuel cells are heat and water. Further, the proton exchange membrane hydrogen fuel cells are housed inside an environmentally secure cabinet for outdoor deployment, and offer a smaller footprint and more dense power backup than other solutions currently available on the market today, contends CommScope.

Related: Data center fuel cells and fire prevention

"The trend is well underway within the telecommunications industry to find innovative ways to improve the reliability and environmental impact of backup power solutions," concludes Anil Trehan, vice president, Energy Solutions, CommScope. "Operators want to reduce their carbon footprint without jeopardizing their service. CableLabs is demonstrating to the cable industry that cost effective, green energy can be a reliable solution for their backup power needs."

The announcement marks the second time a leading cable industry organization has deployed CommScope's alternative-energy solution. In 2011, the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) deployed a similar solution to provide backup power to its data center at its headquarters in Exton, Pennsylvania. That hydrogen fuel cell was called into service during Hurricane Irene in 2011 and Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Both times, the fuel cell provided sufficient backup power until normal power was restored.

See also: Gone by in a whirlwind: 20 dangerous years in the cabling industry


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