Did you see 60 Minutes last Sunday where they interviewed the creater of the Bloom Box?  “Bloom Box?  What is that?” you ask.  It is a fuel cell device to generate electricity and sits in your backyard or basement. 

So far, the only real source of this information is CBS’  60 Minutes, reported by Leslie Stahl. Stahl’s opening words should give pause: “…a generator in a box you’ll put literally in your back yard. You’ll generate your own electricity with the box, and it’ll be wireless…”

This sounds too good to be true.  Google, eBay, WalMart, and other companies are using industrial size Bloom Boxes right now.  This fuel cell, unlike others, does not need rare materials to make.  In fact, the inventor uses beach sand, a metal plate (that is inexpensive to make), and two “inks” that he invented to make the fuel cell.  It uses as a fuel source natural gas, or, methane, or bio-gas and oxygen to make the electricity.  An anyalyst on 60 Minutes said that GE or some other huge company has fuel cell patents and that we won’t have Bloom Boxes in our house in 5-10 years (at a cost of 3k per household), but we will have GE Fuel Cells because they will bring out their fuel cells and be able to mass produce – something that Bloom Box is not capable of doing yet (they can produce 1 a day right now – and I think the 1 a day is the corporate size). 

This brings up a few questions – won’t the energy companies want to squash this technology since it could replace the normal order of energy production?  If GE has fuel cells that can do this, why haven’t they brought them to market when they were created?  Why did they wait until someone outside the insiders did what they have supposedly done?  Or, is the Bloom Box so revolutionary that GE isn’t able to do what they have – which is make a fuel cell that doesn’t use rare metals so the price is not sky high?  And the most important question:  Can Bloom Box make electricity cheaper than buying it from the power companies?  Which, if Bloom can, then what is the power industries going to do to make sure their profits do not go away – get laws passed so this technology is not allowed in a household?  The Bloom Box could be a game changer (I wonder how many miles it would drive a car?).  I would love to test one out at my house – especially in the summer.  Having this working in conjunction with my solar panels, can I get my electrical bill to near zero or negative?   Watch the 60 Minutes story and let me know your thoughts.

Mark Viquesney