As the world demand for energy increases and climate change pressures energy producers to switch from traditional fuel sources, the necessity for technologies such as MCFCs dramatically increases. MCFCs have shown to be a promising solution to the worlds ever-growing energy demand. One of the more successful MCFC was Heavy Industries in Japan in which their 1000-watt fuel cell system operated for 10″,000 continuous hours . Similar systems have been used within North America as well, with M-C Power Corporation of Illinois implementing a 250 Kw system in San Diego . The more interesting prospect, however, is the implication of such a system within the oil sands in Alberta. There has been extensive amount of ongoing research for integration of MCFC within the Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) facilities , . Currently, bitumen extraction in the oil sands requires the combustion of enormous amounts of natural gas to heat enough water to create steam. The integration of a MCFC allows for a significant reduction of SAGD emission, with a potential of capturing 90% of the CO2 produced as a result of combusting the natural gas . The electricity produced as a result can be used to power the facilities while remaining can be sold to Albertans. This allows for an offset towards a more carbon intensive fuels, such as coal.
Molten Carbonate Fuel cells have the potential for reducing the load on Canada’s transmission grids. Although due to its relatively high operating temperature requirements for the cell to function, these plants are limited to large, stationary infrastructures. Some of these plants, however, are small enough as shown in figure 5, to be placed near communities which would increase the reliability and efficiency of the transmission lines, since the load would need to travel less distance to reach the consumers. These cells also provide a great opportunity to use the waste heat produced as space heating, industrial processing, or in steam turbine to generate more electricity. A similar idea has already been implemented within the industry, as most of the current natural gas plants in Canada use the Cogeneration system  Although MCFCs are faced with numerous material and designed challenges as discussed in the previous section, they have proven to be a robust and able alternative to compete with mature technologies already well integrated in the grid, while substantially reducing the emission of greenhouse gases