Fuel Cell and Hydrogen

Energy Connection
May 2013
Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Industry News
Federal Program News
Requests for Information, Proposals, and Papers
About the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Connection

Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Industry News


Verizon to Invest $100M to Install ClearEdge Power Fuel Cells, Solar Panels at 19 Sites 


On April 30, Verizon announced that it will investing $100 million to install fuel cells and solar panels at 19 facilities in 7 different states.  Verizon will be working with ClearEdge Power to install their PureCell Model 400 fuel cell systems at sites in California, New Jersey and New York.

Verizon Fuel Cell (Rendering by ClearEdge Power)


The fuel cells and solar units will be installed in corporate offices, call centers, data centers and central offices. 

Once completed, the project will generate more than 70 million kilowatt hours of clean energy, enough to power 6,000 single-family homes a year, while also reducing Verizon's carbon dioxide emissions by 10,000 metric tons. Verizon's goal is to cut its carbon intensity in half by 2020.

ClearEdge Power's press release is available online here.

FuelCell Energy and Dominion Break Ground on 14.9 MW Fuel Cell Project in Bridgeport, Connecticut


On May 3, Dominion and FuelCell Energy officials were joined by Governor Dannel Malloy and Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch to break ground on a 14.9 MW fuel cell power station.  Dominion reports that this will be the largest fuel cell installation in North America.


The installation will generate clean energy for the city of Bridgeport and is one of 13 projects funded under Connecticut's Project 150, which will increase the states total clean energy production by 150 MWs.


FuelCell Energy will supply five Direct FuelCell stationary power plants and build, operate and maintain the facility, which is scheduled for completion in late 2013. 

Dominion's press release is available online here.

Ballard Deploys 270 Fuel Cells to Caribbean and Latin American Networks  


On May 2, Ballard Power Systems announced that it had deployed over 270 ElectraGen-ME fuel cell backup power systems across 16 Caribbean and Latin American telecommunications networks.  The methanol-powered fuel cells will ensure continuous power for telecommunications installations plagued by electricity disruptions from extreme weather and grid outages.  
Throughout Hurricane Sandy Ballard Power's 21 fuel cell systems 
deployed in the Bahamas maintained power as the power lines were downed and grid access was cut.  Fuel cells are also better suited for the tropical climate, which can diminish the life expectancy of lead-acid batteries and diesel generators.

Ballard's press release is available online here.


Linde Provides Hydrogen Refueling for Aston Martin Rapide S Hydrogen-Powered Race Car at Nurburgring


On May 19-20, the Linde Group provided hydrogen refueling at the Nurburgring 24 Hours Race for the Aston Martin Rapide S hydrogen/gasoline hybrid race car.  The Aston Martin Rapdie S is the first hybrid hydrogen vehicle to compete in an international competition.


Linde provided its trailH2-gas portable refueling unit, a 14m truck and trailer unit, which refueled the Rapide S in less than a minute.


Linde's press release can be found here.


Air Products Begins Operation of CO2 Recovery Project From Steam Methane Reformation


On May 10, Air Products celebrated the successful operation of a Department of Energy (DOE) Demonstration Project to capture carbon dioxide (CO2) from steam methane reformers (SMR) located within the Valero Port Arthur Refinery in Port Arthur, Texas. 

The project aims to capture approximately one million tons of CO2 annually.  The DOE anticipates injection of the CO2 will enable production of an additional 1.6 - 3.1 million barrels of oil from the CO2 injection.

Air Products' press release can be found here. 

Ballard Power Plans to Power 80% of all Fuel Cell Buses in Service in Europe by 2014


On May 14, Ballard announced that it plans on powering around 40 of the 50 zero emission fuel cell buses used in public transit revenue service on European roads in 2014.


The 40 buses will be using the company's latest-generation 75 & 150 kilowatt FCvelocity-HD6 modules. The European Union Joint Technology Initiative (JTI) funding program helped make this possible through earmarks for clean energy public transportation alternatives.


Ballard Power's press release can be found here


ITM Power Sells First Products in South America and Hungary 


On May 1, ITM Power announced a successful Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Fair at the Hannover Messe in April with the sale of its first products sold to both South America and Hungary.

ITM Power reported a significant presence at the Fair and refueled the fuel cell electric vehicles at the event with its HFuel hydrogen refueling station.

ITM Power's press release is available online here.

Intelligent Energy Announces Collaboration with Etisalat on Portable Power Fuel Cells  


On May 21, Intelligent Energy announced it is collaborating with telecommunications company Etisalat Nigeria to test Intelligent Energy's portable power fuel cell technology. Etisalat will facilitate a user testing of the Intelligent Energy fuel cell systems this quarter.


Intelligent Energy's press release can be found here.


University of Delaware to Add Two More Ballard Power Fuel Cell Buses to its Fleet - Air Liquide Hydrogen Station on Campus


On April 29, The University of Delaware announced that it will be expanding its fuel cell hybrid bus fleet within the next year with two additional buses.  Ballard Power has provided the fuel cells for all four buses in the fleet.

A new hydrogen refueling station will be installed by Air Liquide on the Science Technology and Research (STAR) campus to support the new buses. 

The fuel cell program started in 2005, with the first bus arriving on campus in 2007 and the second in 2009.

In addition to the fuel cell bus fleet, Bloom Energy is currently building its East Coast manufacturing facility on the University of Delaware' STAR campus.

The full article can be found here.

Sandia Labs Study Finds Commercial Opportunities for Port Based Fuel Cells

On April 9, Sandia National Laboratories released a study that found fuel cells could provide commercially attractive low-emission power to docked ships. The fuel cells would be situated on barges, eliminating the need for diesel generated power and/or expensive electrical grid modifications to power ships while docked.
In ports such as those in California, fuel cells could also help meet emissions limits more efficiently than installing costly electric grid connections.
The study found that at $4 to $5 per kilogram of hydrogen, fuel cells would be cost competitive with combustion engines at today's prices.
More on the study can be found here.

Global Automakers Push for Bills to Support California Hydrogen Infrastructure 

On May 21, the Association of Global Automakers and its members met with California lawmakers to emphasize importance of development of a California hydrogen infrastructure.  The Association is pushing for passage of SB 11 and AB 8, which would provide funding to build out California hydrogen infrastructure.


Global Automakers press release can be found here. 


Federal Program News


Dr. Ernest Moniz Confirmed, Sworn in as Secretary of Energy


On May 16, Dr. Ernest Moniz was confirmed by the Senate to be Secretary of Energy by a vote of 97-0, and was officially sworn in on May 21. Dr. Moniz was previously a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), serving as Director of MIT's Energy Initiative and the Laboratory for Energy and the Environment. Dr. Moniz will succeed former Secretary Dr. Steven Chu.


Department of Energy Announces H2USA

On May 13, at the Department of Energy (DOE) Annual Merit Review (AMR), Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) David Danielson announced H2USA, a public-private collaboration to develop hydrogen infrastructure and deploy fuel cell electric vehicles in the United States.  


The Department of Energy's press release can be found here.

White House Launches $200 Million Manufacturing Innovation Initiative

On May 9, the White House announced a new initiative to create three innovation institutes to accelerate U.S. manufacturing.  Funding for the institutes will be spread across five Federal agencies: the Department of Defense (DOD), Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Commerce (DOC), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the National Science Foundation (NSF).  
The Administration will commit $200 million to the three institutes; "Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation" and "Lightweight and Modern Metals Manufacturing" to be led by DOD, and "Next Generation Power Electronics Manufacturing" to be led by DOE.

Research by the "Next Generation Power Electronics Manufacturing" institute will focus on development of wide band gap semi-conductors.  These semi-conductors can operate at higher temperatures and voltages than standard semiconductors, which could reduce manufacturing costs and offer significant benefits to accelerate the deployment of fuel cells. 

The White House press release can be found here.  More information on Wide Bandgap Semiconductors can be found here.

Energy Department Announces Over $16 Million for Innovative Energy-Focused Small Businesses - Includes Awards for Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Technologies


On May 9, the Department of Energy announced that it will award over 88 grants totaling $16 million to small businesses to develop clean energy technologies with strong potential for commercialization and job creation.

Several fuel cell and hydrogen technologies will recieve funding through the grants. Nanosonic, Inc. and Applied Nanotech, Inc. were both awarded around $150,000 for hydrogen dispenser technologies.  Acree Technologies Inc. and Ultrasonic Technologies also received $150,000 each for solid oxide fuel cell projects.

A full list of the awards can be found here


Department of Energy Recognizes Industry Leaders in Developing a Unified Industry Association


On May 15, Dr. Sunita Satyapal, Director of the Fuel Cell Technologies Office, presented a Special Recognition Award to Bob Rose of the former U.S. Fuel Cell Council, Jeff Serfass of the former National Hydrogen Association, as well as Ruth Cox and Morry Markowitz of the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association.  


The award was in recognition for the awardee's "outstanding leadership, commitment and collaboration in developing a unified industry stakeholder association, and for contributions to the DOE's Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program."


More information can be found online here.


Requests for Information, Proposals, and Papers


DOE Issues RFI on Rotating Disk Electrode Diagnostics

On May 21, the Department of Energy (DOE) Fuel Cell Technologies Office issued a request for information (RFI) on the use of Rotating Disk Electrode (RDE) diagnostics for PEM FC electrocatalyst screening.  The DOE has determined that intricacies tests of the durability of proton exchange membrane fuel cell oxygen reduction reaction electrocatalysts activity has not been systematically cataloged, and seeks to establish standard procedures and measurement parameters for RDE techniques.

Responses must be submitted electronically no later than 5:00 pm EDT on July 12th, 2013. 


The DOE RFI can be found here.

DOE Issues RFI on Hydrogen Delivery Technologies

On May 20, the Fuel Cell Technologies Office issued a request for information (RFI) seeking feedback from interested stakeholders regarding hydrogen delivery research and development activities aimed at lowering the cost of hydrogen delivery technologies.


The DOE is especially interested in comments from interested parties about compression, storage and dispensing technologies, as well as, high-efficiency hydrogen liquefaction technologies. 


Responses must be received no later than 11:59 pm EDT on June 13, 2013.


The DOE RFI can be found here.

Fuel Cell and Hydrogen R&D Announcements


Brookhaven Researchers Develop Cheap Soybean Based Catalyst

On April 24, researchers at Brookhaven National Laboratory, including two high school students, announced the development of a soybean-based catalyst for hydrogen electrolysis.  The molybdenum-soybean compound showed efficient, stable activity after prolonged exposure to a highly acidic environment.  Molybdenum is a cheap, earth abundant metal, and the catalyst could provide a cost effective alternative to platinum for hydrogen electrolysis.

More on the Brookhaven research can be found here.


Researchers Working With Ballard Power Disperse Platinum Atoms for Cheaper Catalysts


On May 23, using the Canadian Light Source (CLS) synchrotron, researchers at Western University, in partnership with Ballard Power and McMaster University, announced they have developed a method to disperse platinum atoms into nanoparticles and single atoms, creating more efficient and cheaper catalysts.  The dispersed atoms provide a greater reactive surface area, and therefore reduce the platinum required for fuel cell catalysts.

More information on the research can be found here.

Duke Researchers Develop New Gold-Iron Hydrogen Catalyst

On May 21, Duke researchers announced the development of a new gold-iron catalyst to efficiently reform hydrogen with carbon monoxide and hydrogen dense fuels at low temperatures (80 C) without degradation.  The nano-particle catalyst specifically reduced concentrations of CO, which can damage fuel cell membranes, and showed no reduction in catalytic activity over 200 hours.

More information on the research can be found here.


Researchers Working with Ballard Double Fuel Cell Life in Buses

On May 22, researchers at Simon Fraser University working with Ballard Power Systems announced they have doubled the life of fuel cells operating on buses by quantifying the degradation to fuel cell membranes in real-world bus conditions.  The team has developed algorithms for repair and maintenance, to understand the effects of electrode degradation stressors over fuel cell lifetimes, and increase the competitiveness of fuel cell buses.

More information on the study can be found here.


About the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Connection




Press releases and story ideas may be forwarded to Connor Dolan and Karen Hall for consideration at  cdolan@fchea.org and  khall@fchea.org respectively.


The Sponsors


Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association --  The Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) is the trade association for the fuel cell and hydrogen energy industry, and is dedicated to the commercialization of fuel cells and hydrogen energy technologies. Fuel cells and hydrogen energy technologies deliver clean, reliable power to leading edge corporate, academic and public sector users, and FCHEA members are helping to transform the our energy future. FCHEA represents the full global supply chain, including universities, government laboratories and agencies, trade associations, fuel cell materials, components and systems manufacturers, hydrogen producers and fuel distributors, utilities and other end users.


National Energy Technology Laboratory --  The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), part of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) national laboratory system is owned and operated by the DOE.  Its mission is "Advancing energy options to fuel our economy, strengthen our security, and improve our environment".  NETL performs, procures, and partners with universities and the private sector.  Together, these efforts focus a wealth of scientific and engineering talent on creating commercially viable solutions to national energy and environmental problems.  NETL has expertise in coal, natural gas, and oil technologies, contract and project management, analysis of energy systems, and international energy issues.   NETL supports DOE's mission to advance the national, economic, and energy security of the United States.  
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