Plug Power Inc., has executed a multi-year contract with SouthernLINC Wireless, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Southern Company, for its ReliOn integrated fuel cell solution and GenFuel hydrogen services.

Plug Power will provide ReliOn integrated backup power fuel cell solutions to SouthernLINC Wireless for use in its wireless network, which supports Southern Company’s communication needs and provides a wireless communications network for customers. Southern Company is an Atlanta-based energy company serving 4.4 million customers in the Southeastern United States.

SouthernLINC Wireless anticipates deploying as many as 500 new LTE sites utilising the Plug Power ReliOn integrated solution, which includes fuel cell systems and bulk refillable hydrogen storage, DC plant rectifiers and distribution, battery technology and space for radio equipment, in an environmentally-hardened outdoor cabinet.

Plug Power’s hydrogen fuel cell-based backup power system, known as ReliOn, supplements batteries and replaces diesel-fuel generators used for backup power applications. The integrated system provides a complete communications equipment shelter and a highly reliable, clean, cost-effective grid and backup power system for 24/7 operations. The system enables rapid deployment while requiring only a fraction of the footprint required by previous solutions.

“Plug Power looks forward to working with the SouthernLINC Wireless team in the coming years to provide a robust ReliOn-powered wireless communications network at approximately 500 new sites,” said Andy Marsh, CEO at Plug Power. “In turn, SouthernLINC will be well equipped to deliver reliable power and communications to customers no matter what weather challenges come their way.”

The ReliOn product was successfully demonstrated with Southern Company prior to being awarded the contract.