Fuel Cell and Hydrogen

Energy Connection
June 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


California Energy Commission Approves over $18 Million in Grants for Hydrogen Infrastructure Projects


On June 12, The California Energy Commission approved $18,690,000 in grants for projects that will expand the state's fueling infrastructure for fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs).  The companies receiving funding include the South Coast Air Quality Management District, Linde, Hydrogen Frontier, Air Products and Chemicals, and Air Liquide Industrial US.


These grants were made through the Commission's Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program. For the current fiscal year, the program is slated to invest approximately $90 million to encourage the development and use of new technologies, and help the state meet its climate change goals. The program is funded by surcharges on vehicle and boat registrations, as well as smog check and license plate fees.


California Energy Commission's press release can be found here  


Two Mercedes-Benz Hybrid Buses and a Hydrogen Station Begin Operation at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology


On June 11, the inauguration of a hydrogen fueling station as well as the operation of two Mercedes-Benz Citaro FuelCELL Hybrid fuel cell buses was held at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology.  The two hybrid buses will provide permanent and regular service between three areas of campus.


The buses have a range of over 300 kilometers and refueling at the new station will only take 8-10 minutes.


Daimler's press release can be found here.


Air Products Introduces an Advanced Consumer-Friendly Retail Hydrogen Fueling Dispenser


On June 11, Air Products announced its new consumer-friendly hydrogen fuel pump. The product is the market's first fully-integrated retail hydrogen dispenser.  Air Products partnered with Bennett Pump Company to develop a pump with an attractive design that can be integrated into any existing retail point of sale system. The pump resembles a traditional gas station and it is hoped to meet consumer expectations in a safe and familiar way.


Air Products' New Hydrogen Fuel Dispenser 

(Source: Air Products)

The new technology is to be immediately incorporated into 10 new fueling stations to be built by Air Products in California starting this year.


Air Products' press release can be found here.


Intelligent Energy and Microqual Sign Telecommunications Collaboration Agreement 



On June 11, Intelligent Energy and Indian telecommunications company Microqual Techno Limited signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) establishing a partnership to provide telecommunications infrastructure on power transmission towers throughout India.


Intelligent Energy's fuel cell systems will provide power to the equipment mounted on these towers. This method of providing telecommunications infrastructure helps reduce cost and set up time, which enables rapid expansion in rural areas.


Intelligent Energy's press release can be found here.  


Hydrogenics / EPRI Holds Webinar on Power-to-Gas Technology 


On June 13, Hydrogenics and the Electric Power Research Insitute (EPRI) held a webinar on Bulk Energy Storage through its Power-To-Gas (P2G) technologies. The discussion was focused on how hydrogen can enable increased penetration of renewables and the business case for power-to-gas.


Daryl Wilson, President and Executive Director of Hydrogenics, and Rob Harvey, Director of Hydrogenics, explained the benefits of using P2G storage on the webinar.


More information on Hydrogenics' Power-to-Gas technology can be found here.  A recording of the webinar is available online here.


Proton OnSite Awards Three High School Students $200,000 in Scholarships for Clean Energy Breakthroughs


On June 10, Proton OnSite awarded three high school students $200,000 in scholarships for hydrogen energy breakthroughs through the Proton OnSite Scholarship and Innovation Program.


Award winners Shilpa and Shweta Iyer both received $50,000 each for their breakthrough in using soybeans, while Kyle Saleeby received $100,000 for his flywheel which creates hydrogen gas by harnessing the energy in waves.


Over the past four years the Proton OnSite Scholarship and Innovation Program and its benefactor, Tom Sullivan, have given nearly $2 million to 20 high school students for their hydrogen energy breakthroughs.


Proton OnSite's press release can be found here.



Verizon to Install Bloom Energy Fuel Cell Systems as Part of 19 Facility Large-Scale Green Energy Investment


On June 4, Verizon announced an agreement to install Bloom Energy fuel cell systems at call-switching centers in Los Angeles and San Francisco, and a data center in San Jose. 


This installation will be part of a $100 clean energy million investment by Verizon which also includes previously announced installations of ClearEdge Power fuel cell systems and SunPower Corp solar units.  In total, 19 of Verizon's facilities in California and six other states across the country will generate more than 90 million kilowatt hours of green energy annually. 


Verizon's press release can be found here


BMW, With Plug Power, Now Operating Largest Fuel Cell Forklift Fleet in North America

On June 6, Plug Power Inc. announced that BMW Manufacturing had completed an expansion of its fuel cell materials handling fleet to a total deployment of 275 units at its Spartanburg, SC manufacturing facility.  The fleet is fueled by hydrogen supplied by Linde Industrial Gases.


The additional 175 trucks and forklifts added to the facility's operations has completely converted the forklift fleet to fuel cell power.  Plug Power also claims that this is the largest fuel cell forklift fleet in North America.

Plug Power's press release can be found here.


Hyundai Delivers 15 ix35 Fuel Cell Vehicles to Copenhagen, Denmark

On June 4, Hyundai delivered 15 ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles to Copenhagen, Denmark. Copenhagen purchased the fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) for the city's municipal fleet in order to help the city reach its carbon neutral goals by 2025.


Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell at handover in Copenhagen (source: Hyundai Motor Company) 


The ix35 Fuel Cell is the first assembly line produced FCEV, and can travel 370 miles on 5.64 kg H2.  Hyundai plans to build 1,000 ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles by 2015.

Hyundai's press release can be found here.


ClearEdge Power to Install Fuel Cell at South Korea's Busan International Finance Center Landmark Tower 


On June 19, ClearEdge Power, in partnership with Samsung Everland, announced that they will be installing a 400 kW fuel cell in South Korea's Busan International Finance Center Landmark Tower.  This is the fourth project which ClearEdge has partnered with Samsung Everland. 


Fuel cell installations are increasingly being used to help companies and utilities in South Korea meet the goals of the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) set by the government.  Fuel cells are awarded the highest multiplier on renewable energy credits per hour in the South Korean RPS.


ClearEdge Power's press release can be found here


Ballard Power, Amplats, and South African Government to Partner on Residential Fuel Cells


On June 18, Ballard Power Systems announced that the South African government has reinforced its support for the fuel cell industry by committing funding to support field trials.



The South African Government will partner with Ballard and Anglo American Platinum for initial field trials of a new methanol-fueled "home generator" prototype, designed for use in off-grid residential applications.  The home generator product is being developed as a means of addressing the many African households in rural communities that are currently unable to access the grid because of distance or terrain.


Ballard Power's press release can be found here.

Air Liquide Aims To Use Fuel Cells Onboard Aircrafts


On June 19, Air Liquide announced participation in the HYdrogenCells for AiRborne Usage (HYCARUS) project, which aims to develop a high performance fuel cell system to supply electrical power on board aircrafts.  As part of the HYCARUS project, Air Liquide will develop a high-pressure storage system and supply of hydrogen gas onboard the aircraft for the fuel cell.


The project is supported by the Fuel Cells Hydrogen & Joint Undertaking (FCHJU), a European public-private partnership that supports research, technological developments and undertakings in the hydrogen and fuel cells sector.


Air Liquide's press release can be found here.


Hydrogenics Technology is Used in the Largest Power to Gas Facility in the World


On June 13, Hydrogenics reported that the world's largest Power to Gas facility went live in Falkenhagen, Germany.  Operated by Germany utility company E.ON and using Hydrogenics technology, the two mW facility takes surplus renewable energy sources and produces hydrogen for storage in the country's natural gas pipeline network.  Now in full operation, E.ON Gas Storage is feeding 640 mper hour into the local natural gas grid through the facility.


Hydrogenics' press release can be found here


ITM Power Announces Incorporation of ITM Power ApS in Denmark


On June 20, ITM Power announced the incorporation of ITM Power ApS, a wholly owned Danish subsidiary company.  ITM Power has been invited by an anonymous international partner to jointly bid for significant energy storage opportunities in the territory. ITM Power will join the partner to tender for existing opportunities as well as those already under development.


This announcement comes following Denmark's new Energy Plan 2020. The Danish Energy Plan outlines set of government 

initiatives to be conducted, with the aim of 100% fossil fuel independence by 2050.  Included in the plan are number of 

initiatives for hydrogen infrastructure, fuel cell electric vehicles, and hydrogen energy storage.


ITM Power's press release can be found here.


Ballard Power Systems Announces Next-Gen Fuel Cell, Design for Telecom Back-Up on Unreliable Grids.


On June 16, Ballard Power debuted its newest methanol-powered fuel cell backup power system for telecommunications applications.  Ballard stated that its enhancements, such as corrosion resistant coatings and an upgraded fuel processing module, make it ideal for providing extended run-time when extreme weather threatens the grid. 


This announcement comes at a time when fuel cells are increasingly being adopted in markets with unreliable grids, such as India, Japan, and the Caribbean.


Ballard Power's press release can be found here.

Hydrogenics Awarded Contract for Fueling Station in Italy

On June 18, Hydrogenics Corporation announced that it has been awarded a contract for three HySTAT-60 electrolyzers by The Linde Group for installation as part of a fueling station in Bolzano, Italy.


The project is a part of the EU's Clean Hydrogen in European Cities (CHIC) project, which is committed to making hydrogen-based public transport a commercial reality in Europe.


Hydrogenics' press release can be found here


The Administration Expresses Support for Fuel Cell Technologies in President's Climate Action Plan 

On June 25, President Obama laid out a comprehensive plan to reduce greenhouse gas pollution in America. The President's Climate Action Plan details several actions, including, developing and deploying advanced transportation technologies. In the plan, the Administration expressed support for fuel cell technologies by saying:


"More broadly, the Administration will continue to leverage partnerships between the private and public sectors to deploy cleaner fuels, including advanced batteries and fuel cell technologies, in every transportation mode."


The President's full Action Plan can be found here.


Plug Power Announces New GenDrive 1900


On June 24, Plug Power announced the release of their new GenDrive 1900 product, the company's highest-power fuel cell on the market.  The GenDrive 1900 is to be used as a replacement for lead-acid batteries in six-ton forklifts, which are among the most popular large-capacity forklifts in use. 


With this addition to the product line, Plug Power now provides a complete solution to all class-one hydrogen forklift trucks.


Plug Power's full press release can be found here

CaFCP Wins Award from Sacramento IABC for Go campaign


On June 27, The California Fuel Cell Partnership announced that it had received an award from the Sacramento International Association of Business Communicators.  The award was given for their Go informational campaign, which aimed at expanding public awareness on how FCEVs and hydrogen-powered cars worked. 


The campaign used pictures, taglines, and emotional appeals that targeted all audiences.  Through the campaign, they were able to increase web traffic by 911% and more than double their Twitter followers. 


California Fuel Cell Partnership's full press release can be found here.

Winners Announced for 2012/2013 Hydrogen Student Design Contest
On June 25, the Hydrogen Education Foundation announced this year's winners of the Hydrogen Student Design Contest, sponsored by the Department of Energy, NREL, Mercedes-Benz, and Toyota.  Students from Kyushu University won the grand prize for designing a hydrogen refueling infrastructure for the northeastern United States. 
The design places emphasis on modular and portable reactors for urban areas, with the ability for growth based on demand.  
The Hydrogen Education Foundation's full press release can be found here.
Air Products Extends PRISM Hydrogen Generator Product Line For On-Site Production 

On June 24, Air Products announced that it has extended its PRISM Hydrogen Generator product line for on-site gas production to supply requirements greater than 4.1 million standard cubic feet per day.  


Air Products' PRISM generators can offer the lowest cost hydrogen available in this production range. Air Products has contracted more than 30 PRISM Hydrogen Generators, of which over 20 have been installed and are operating around the world.  


Air Products' full press release can be found here.


Federal Program News


Energy Department Announces $9 Million in Funding for Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Projects 


On June 11, the Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $9 million in new funding to accelerate the development of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies for use in vehicles, backup power systems, and hydrogen refueling components.


Projects selected for funding will demonstrate, deploy and validate hydrogen and fuel cell technologies in real-world environments. The goal is to reduce the costs of hydrogen and fuel cells industry-wide, expand critical infrastructure, and build a solid domestic supplier base. Topic areas include: fuel cell and hybrid electric medium-duty trucks, advanced hydrogen refueling components, rooftop installations of hydrogen fuel cell backup power systems, and hydrogen meter R&D. Eight projects will be chosen from industry, academia, and national labs.


The DOE press release can be found here.


Department of Energy Releases New FCEV Well-to-Wheels Analysis and Life Cycle Cost Analysis


On June 13, The Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy released two peer-reviewed documents.  The first document details the updated well-to-wheels greenhouse gas emissions and petroleum energy usage. The second analyzes the life cycle cost for advanced technology vehicles that could be deployed in 2035.


The full reports can be found here.  


FY14 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill Approved by Full Committee


On June 26, the House Appropriations Committee approved the Energy and Water Appropriation Bill.


The bill totals $30.4 billion- a cut of $2.9 billion below the FY13 enacted level and a reduction of $4.1 billion from the President's request.  The bill prioritizes funding for national security and increases funding for nuclear weapons programs from FY13. The bill also protects funding for critical national and regional infrastructure projects through the Army Corps of Engineers.  To meet these needs, the legislation contains strategic and targeted reductions from lower-priority or unnecessary programs, including many within the Department of Energy. ARPA-E funding was cut by 81%.


The bill was approved by the full committee on a vote of 28-21 and will be referred to the house.


The full webcast can be found here.


A draft of the bill can be found here.


Requests for Information, Proposals, and Papers


DOE Announces FOA for Hydrogen Delivery Technologies


On June 28, The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced that it plans to issue a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for hydrogen delivery technologies.


The FOA is anticipated to include funding for forecourt compressors, polymer and composite materials, and high pressure hydrogen storage technology.  


EERE plans to issue the FOA in July or August of this year. The full announcement can be found here.  


DOE Extends Deadline for Application for FOA on Early Market Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Funding 


The Department of Energy extended the funding opportunity announcement (FOA) deadline to July 25th for project proposal applications.  

The FOA, initially announced June 11, makes $9 million in funding available to support new hydrogen and fuel cell technologies, and would help these technologies break into the market easier. 


The full FOA can be found here.


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 have 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 p.m EDT on July 12th, 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.


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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.


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