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The Bloom Box: An Energy Breakthrough? @ 60 Minutes

In the world of energy, the Holy Grail is a power source that’s inexpensive and clean, with no emissions. Well over 100 start-ups in Silicon Valley are working on it, and one of them, Bloom Energy, is about to make public its invention: a little power plant-in-a-box they want to put literally in your backyard. You’ll generate your own electricity with the box and it’ll be wireless. The idea is to one day replace the big power plants and transmission line grid, the way the laptop moved in on the desktop and cell phones supplanted landlines. It has a lot of smart people believing and buzzing, even though the company has been unusually secretive – until now.

I’m always hopeful of “new power” developments, specifically fuel cells – what do you think makers? They raised $400m so far… well, that’s what they implied. There are 20 customers so far: FedEx, Wal-mart, Staples, Google (the first – powering a data center for 18 months), eBay (5 boxes, saved them $100k in power costs)… all in CA, they get 20% off the costs ($800k per unit) and tax breaks.

I’ll say this, I want a Bloom Box at Maker Faire :)

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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