theodp writes: Its official public launch is on Wednesday, but Bloom Energy CEO K.R. Sridhar just gave 60 Minutes viewers a sneak peek at the 'Bloom Box' (video clip), the company's potentially revolutionary fuel-cell system. The boxes combine oxygen and fuel in a combustion-less process to generate electricity off the grid. Bloom says each large box — which can power about 100 homes — currently sells for $700-800,000 (hefty 'green subsidies' are available). Initial customers include eBay, Google, FedEx, Staples and WalMart. A smaller home version is planned for about $3,000 a unit, but is still 5-10 years out. Even if Bloom can mass produce the boxes and sell them cheaply enough, 'The problem is then G.E. and Siemens and other conglomerates that can probably do the same thing,' said Michael Kanellos of GreenTech Media. 'They have fuel cell patents.' Bloom is backed by KPCB, which 60 Minutes notes brought the world Amazon, Google — and Segway.
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