December 2010

Outgoing Gov. Paterson Releases NY Climate Action Plan, Looks Promising For Hydrogen
ALBANY, NY – Outgoing New York Governor David A. Paterson last month released the state’s Climate Action Plan which supporters say has the potential for an orderly rollout of hydrogen technology.The plan’s overarching target is an 80% reduction of carbon dioxide emissions by 2050, in line with what President Barack Obama envisioned during his campaign but that was in effect shot down this summer when Congress failed to act on his climate and energy proposals.Paterson announced the interim report, which apparently got only minimal press coverage, at the Advanced Energy 2010 ...
McKinsey Report: Fuel Cells, H2 Essential To Meet Europe’s CO2 Reduction Targets
BRUSSELS – About a year in the making, an industry data-based study facilitated and supported by McKinsey & Company concludes that hydrogen and fuel cells are essential to reaching CO2 reduction goals for automobiles in Europe.The 64-page report, “The role of Battery Electric Vehicles, Plug-in Hybrids and Fuel Cell Vehicles,”   released here Nov. 8, says a portfolio of all three electric drive technologies are needed to reach climate amelioration targets, with each addressing different requirements. But in the long run hydrogen and fuel cell technologies, and ...
South Korea’s EAV-1 UAV, powered by a Horizon Energy Systems Aeropak PEM fuel cell. 
Briefly Noted:
* “The Independent”: 2010 Carbon Emissions Likely to be Highest Ever: Levels of man-made greenhouse emissions being dumped into the atmosphere have never been higher and are accelerating, reports the Nov. 22 issue of the UK’s “The Independent” in one of three articles on the subject in that issue, ahead of the start of the Cancun, Mexico, climate conference. During the 1990s, annual average CO2 emissions rose by 1%, and in the last decade they increased to an average annual rate of 2.5%. While levels fell by 1.3% in 2009 because of the worldwide recession, this ...
Market Data-Based Study Predicts Oil Substitutes Won’t be Ready for a Century
DAVIS, CA – Given the current pace of research and development, it will be about a century – give or take a few decades – before technologies will be ready to replace oil, according to a study based on stock market expectations.The study is based on the theory that long-term investors are good predictors of whether and when new energy technologies will become commonplace, says a UC Davis announcement.Published Nov. 8 online in the Journal “Environmenal Science & Technology,” the study was authored by a UC Davis professor of civil and environmental ...
CARB: 80% of California’s 2050 Car Fleet Must Be Electrics to Meet Climate Needs
 SACRAMENTO, CA – To achieve 2050 carbon reduction goals for California, almost 80% of the state’s vehicle fleet will have to be electric vehicles by that year.This is the basic message and conclusion of a proposal that takes a first cut at post-2018 zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) rules, presented at a public workshop by the staff of California’s Air Resources Board (CARB) November 16 here. Overall, the staff paper – a series of view grafs, but no text – “is an unequivocal affirmation of the importance California places on commercialization of fuel cell ...
Audi’s new Q5 HFC fuel cell hybrid concept crossover SUV. Audi Unveils Hybrid Fuel Cell Audi Q5 HFC Crossover SUV Prototype
INGOLSTADT, GERMANY – Audi AG, the high-end, high-performance subsidiary of Germany’s Volkswagen, says it’s merely “studying” the potential of fuel cell power, but judging by its latest prototype, things have progressed a bit beyond study:  Last month, Audi rolled out a hybrid fuel cell version of its Q5 crossover sport utility vehicle, the Audi Q5 HFC concept, during official launch festivities of a brand-new euro 65 million ($87 million), 150,000 sq. feet development and testing center for electric drive systems here. The center will employ some 840 ...
Two of 50-plus fuel cell-powered sightseeing vehicles deployed at the Asian Games and Asian Para Games in Guangzhou City, China, are awaiting their turn refueling with hydrogen at a dispensing station made by Air Products at the Games venue. The front of a third one is just barely visible in back, on the other side of the station. Air Products Fuels 50-Plus Fuel Cell Vehicles at Asian Games & Para Games in China
GUANGZHOU CITY, CHINA – Everybody knows about stretch limousines, but Chinese engineers have invented a new vehicle category:  stretch golf carts.  That’s what they look like, but officially they are known as sightseeing vehicles. More than 50 of these eleven-seaters, all fuel cell powered, were deployed at the Asian Games and Asian Para Games Nov. 12-Dec. 19 in Guangzhou City, Guadong Province, northwest  of Hong Kong. The open-sided green-and-white vehicles are used to shuttle athletes and government officials between sites during the games. It is another energy ...
Fast Forward:
  * With GOP Riding High, More State Energy Activism, More Resistance to Renewables Likely: That’s what some consultants are prognosticating. DB Climate Change Advisors, the institutional climate change investment division of Deutsche Asset Management, for instance, says in a research note there is likely to be more resistance to renewable energy incentives in a constrained budget environment. Attention is likely to focus on expanding the use of natural gas, which President Obama has identified as an area of bipartisan agreement. And more state activity was the theme of a ...
Events:
                 The “6th Fuel Cell Durability & Performance” conference will be held Dec. 9-10 at the Hilton Boston Back Bay Hotel. Details: David Mello, Knowledge Foundation, 617/232-7400, dmello@knowledgefoundation.com.                  A “Fuel Cells and Hydrogen for the Marine and Harbor Industry” workshop will be held Dec. 15 in Brussels, Belgium. Details: FuelCell Europe, +32/ 22 11 34 11, ...
Transitions
 * Rochester Hills, MI-based Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. has appointed William C. “Kriss” Andrews as executive vice president and chief financial officer, effective Nov. 10. Andrews has been serving as interim chief financial officer  since April. Previously he worked for 12 years at global business advisory firm BBK Ltd, Southfield, MI where he co-led the firm’s North American automotive practice……Protonex Technology Corp., Southborough, MA has named Paul Osenar president and chief executive officer. He is a co-founder of the company which was ...

November 2010

Fast Forward:
 * McKinsey’s European Infrastructure Study Comes in From the Cold: It will probably be all out in the open by the time you read this, but the long-rumored study on extending Germany’s hydrogen infrastructure plans to all of Europe (H&FCL, April, June, Aug. 10) is finally seeing the light of day: The study will be unveiled Nov. 8 at the Palais des Academies in Brussels by the coalition of 28 companies, an NGO (the European Climate Foundation) and two government organizations, Germany’s national hydrogen organization NOW and the European Fuel Cells and Hydrogen ...
Transitions:
 * Former General Motors public relations staffer Pete Barkey has been appointed as communications director for the new Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA), the result of the merger last month of the National Hydrogen Assocation and the U.S. Fuel Cell Council …….Dr. Ralf Speth, CEO of Jaguar Land Rover, has joined the board of fuel cell catalyst developer Sun Catalytix, Cambridge, MA as representative of the British carmaker’s parent company, Tata Limited. The Indian conglomerate is partner in a group of investors that has raised $9.5 million for Sun ...
The prototype hydrogen home refueler on display in a Proton Energy Systems work bay. 
Proton Energy/SunHydro Opens 1st of Chain of Solar Hydrogen Stations in Connecticut
WALLINGFORD, CT – The first of ten privately funded solar hydrogen fueling stations opened here in the parking lot of Proton Energy Systems last month – “a Kitty Hawk” moment. That’s what Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) who was on hand for the occasion, called it. “Investing in new clean and renewable energy technologies is vital for our security and our economy,” DeLauro, whose district includes this town with its mix of high-tech and traditional manufacturing companies, said. “We must reinvest in our own clean energy sector to stay competitive ...
Survivors’ Euphoria, Cautious Optimism, Realism Mark 2010 Fuel Cell Seminar
SAN ANTONIO, TX – “It’s time to go on the offensive.” With that call to action, Charles E. Freese, Executive Director of General Motors Powertrain Engineering, set the tone of the 2010 Fuel Cell Seminar and Exposition in San Antonio October 19-21, 2010.Freese, speaking at the opening plenary session October 19, noted that GM’s fuel cell research program had endured the collapse of its worldwide markets, a bankruptcy, government takeover and restructuring, a commitment justified by technical progress and the market opportunity.  The 2009 Seminar had an air ...
One Voice Now: U.S. Fuel Cell Council, National Hydrogen Association Merge
 WASHINGTON, DC – Discussed off and on for about a year, the U.S. Fuel Cell Council (USFCC) and the National Hydrogen Association (NHA) are joining forces to accelerate the commercialization of fuel cell and hydrogen energy technologies.With a total membership of some 126 companies, universities, and other organizations, the newly formed Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) “will bring a strong, unified voice to the drive for clean energy,” said FCHEA in its October 28 announcement. The merger of the industry’s leading advocacy organizations will ...
Hydrogen Pipelines: Air Products Plans Longest H2 Pipeline Yet; Linde Starts New One in Texas
LEHIGH VALLEY, PA/DEER PARK, TX – Move over, Ruhr; you are about to be replaced as home of the world’s longest hydrogen pipeline:Pennsylvania-based Air Products announced plans last month to construct a new 180 mile pipeline, creating what the company said would be the world’s largest hydrogen plant and supply network.The integrated system would link more than 20 hydrogen plants and more than 600 miles of, presumably existing, pipelines to supply refinery and petrochemical industries in Louisiana and Texas with more than one billion cubic feet of hydrogen per day. Air ...
Connecticut Transit’s new UTC Power/Van Hool hybrid fuel cell bus cruises through downtown Hartford, with some of the city’s landmarks in background. Four Next-Generation Hybrid Fuel Cell Buses Launch in Connecticut
HARTFORD, CT – Coincidence or not, the launch of four new fuel cell hybrid buses here last month took place at  just about the same time as the opening of a new hydrogen station serving a clutch of fuel cell SUVs took place some 25 miles south.Here in Hartford, the next-generation Van Hool transit buses powered by UTC Power fuel cell systems were introduced the morning of Oct. 15 by officials from Connecticut Transit (CTTransit), UTC executives, and Rep. John Larson (D-CT), a long-time hydrogen and fuel cell supporter in Congress.And in Wallingford, CT, five Toyota hybrid fuel ...
Events
                The “Battery Safety 2010” and “Lithium Mobile Power 2010” conferences are scheduled for Nov. 4-5 in Boston, MA. Details: David Mello, Knowledge Foundation, dmello@knowledgefoundation.com.                 The “17th Stralsund Symposium on the Use of Regenerative Energy Sources and Hydrogen Technology” will be held in conjunction with the “Climate Protection Congress M-V” Nov. ...
DoE News: A Fresh Start? New H2/Fuel Cell Plan Draft Includes Fuel Cell Vehicles
 WASHINGTON, DC – Good news: the draft of a new Energy Department plan for its hydrogen and fuel cell program now includes fuel cell vehicles in its mix of alternative vehicles.Coming after a couple of years of attempts to kill the program by eliminating funding – and after Congress restored much of the funding  - DoE’s leadership seems to be coming around to the view, held strongly  in Europe, in Japan and in Korea, that hydrogen and fuel cells are essential for a lower-carbon future energy system.Not so good news comes in a sentence midway through the ...
Briefly Noted:
* Mercedes, Hyundai Getting Closer to Launch: It’s not Christmas yet, but it’s almost beginning to feel like it for fuel cell fans: Daimler has begun taking orders for its new Mercedes-Benz fuel cell car that will be leased to customers in California, said “The Detroit News”  in an October 6 Bloomberg News story. The story didn’t specify the model, but presumably it’s the new B-Class F-Cell. The story quoted Sascha Simon, an executive in charge of advanced product planning for the carmaker’s American sales unit, as saying the monthly lease may ...
Study Charges University Energy Research Funded by Big Oil May Be Compromised
 WASHINGTON, DC – A new report says research at top universities funded by major oil companies may be tainted.The study, “Big Oil Goes to College,” says that “big oil grants to major universities may compromise integrity of scientific research.” The 220-page document, authored by Jennifer Washburn and released  last month by the Center for American Progress here,  maintains, among other things, that Big Oil – Chevron, BP, ConocoPhillips, Royal Dutch Shell, ExxonMobil and others – “have underwritten research at top-tier ...

October 2010

Transitions:
 * Europe’s Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking has appointed Bert De Colvenaer as its new executive director. De Colvenaer, a Belgian, previously was senior manager of Toyota Europe’s Advanced Technology Division. The Undertaking is a public-private partnership. He succeeds Philippe Vannson who served as interim executive director after it was set up in 2008…….The Palo Alto, CA-based Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) has named Arshad Mansoor, as senior vice president of research and development. He will continue to serve in his former role as vice ...
Big Market for Auxiliary Power Fuel Cells for Seagoing Ships, Says New Study
HAMBURG – There is a market of up to 160 GW worldwide for fuel cells serving as auxiliary power sources for seagoing vessels, according to a market study by a major provider of assurance, consulting and classification services for the maritime and energy industries.The new study by Germanischer Lloyd (GL), released  here last month, said fuel cells can take the place of conventional auxiliary power plants to reduce emissions into air. The study was conducted together with the Hamburg City Administration for Urban Development and Environment.Among other things, GL’s experts ...
Proposed Fuel Economy Labels Will Give Misleading Emission Data, Analyst Says
ALEXANDRIA, VA – First, the good news: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Transportation Department’s National Traffic Safety Administration are proposing to add greenhouse gas emission data to their fuel economy labels on all new car stickers, starting in 2012.Now the bad news: EPA wants to list only the vehicle tail pipe greenhouse gas emissions which, says an internationally respected veteran hydrogen expert and analyst, “would be very misleading and counterproductive.”The new stickers for 2012, as currently proposed by the two agencies, would ignore ...
Bayer, Siemens, RWE Research Renewables for CO2 Uses via Storing Large H2 Volumes
 LEVERKUSEN, GERMANY - Large-scale storage of intermittent renewable electricity in form of electrolytic hydrogen will be tested in a Euro 18 million ($23.5 million) project that’s being launched by three major German corporations.  The project is headed by Bayer Technologies, a division of chemical giant Bayer, in cooperation with electrical and electronic engineering powerhouse Siemens and Germany’s largest energy supplier, RWE.  It is designed to use renewable energies to help utilize carbon dioxide as a carbon building block for chemical intermediates such as ...
German chancellor Angela Merkel, shown here during cornerstone laying festivities last year for a hybrid power plant, proposes to convert the country’s electric power production to mostly renewable sources over the next 40 years. Germany Announces National Plan to Convert to 80% Renewables by 2050
 BERLIN – In what may be one of the most audacious acts of environmental statesmanship yet, the German government last month announced plans to convert 80% of the country’s electric power production to renewables by 2050.Chancellor Angela Merkel, presenting the plan Sept. 6 here, called it a “revolution in the field of energy supply” and efficiency while pledging that energy will remain affordable for families and business.  In a video podcast on the government’s website, Merkel said, “the most important aspect is that we invest more in ...
Fast Forward:
* Another Ten Toyota Fuel Cell Hybrids, this Time for Connecticut: As part of its nationwide 100-vehicle fuel cell vehicle demonstration program, Toyota is placing ten fuel cell hybrids in Connecticut in an agreement with SunHydro, the Wallingford-based company that plans to build a string of privately funded hydrogen stations from Maine to Florida (H&FCL April 10). SunHydro says the ten cars, based on the Highlander SUV model, will support the company’s first solar-powered hydrogen station, located at the sister company Proton Energy System’s headquarters in Wallingford. ...
It’s Gold: Team leader Thomas Kunick holds up the certificate for the 25,000 euro first place f-cell award handed to him by symposium organizer Peter Sauber. Kunick and his company, Reinz-Dichtungs-GmbH, were honored for developing a highly integrated, modular fuel cell stack system.                 (Photo by Sven Geitmann) Two-Day “f-cell” Symposium Draws 800, Focus on Residential Fuel Cells, Production
STUTTGART – Now in its 10th year, the two-day “f-cell” symposium here last month has become Germany’s largest and most important event for the hydrogen and fuel cell industry.And given Germany’s generally acknowledged leadership role alongside Japan’s, it has become a major must-attend venue for experts and business executives from around the world. Organized by the Peter Sauber Agency here in cooperation with the Stuttgart Region Economic Development Agency, the Sept. 27-28 event drew some 800 participants who inspected the offerings of more than 40 ...
New Fuel Cells 2000 Report Illustrates Business Case for Fuel Cells
WASHINGTON, DC – More than three dozen national U.S. companies, including 11 Fortune 500 firms, are using fuel cells today to save energy, money and carbon emissions, according to a new study released last month.“The Business Case for Fuel Cells: Why Top Companies are Purchasing Fuel Cells Today,” compiled by the non-profit Fuel Cells 2000 organization here, profiles a select group of companies that are deploying or demonstrating fuel cells. The 99-page report focuses on warehouses, stores, manufacturing facilities, hotels and telecommunication backup power as prime ...
Events:
                A “Fuel Cells Science & Technology 2010 Conference” is scheduled for Oct. 6-7 in Zaragoza, Spain. Details: FuelCellAdvances@elsevier.com.                 The “2nd Annual Biogas” conference is scheduled for Oct. 13-14 at the Hotel Whitcomb, San Francisco, CA. Details: GreenPower conferences, +1 971 238 0700, graham.swanson@greenpowerconferences.com; www.greenpowerconferences.com/biogasusa. ...
California City Wants to Remove CoGen Fuel Cells, Install I.C. Plants Instead
SANTA BARBARA, CA – Not all fuel cell ventures have a happy outcome – especially pioneering ones:  Case in point is a pair of 250 MW FuelCell Energy molten carbonate DSC 300 units installed by the City of Santa Barbara six years ago at its El Estero wastewater treatment plant. The co-generation fuel cells have been generating electricity and hot water from biogas since 2005.  Now, the city’s public works department wants the city to terminate the existing Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) it has with Alliance LLC under which the city bought electricity at ...
Briefly Noted:
 * 20 GM Fuel Cell Equinox SUVs to arrive in Hawaii: General Motors plans to start shipping the first of 20 hydrogen-fueled Chevrolet Fuel Cell Equinox vehicles to Hawaii later this year. According to a Sept. 2 story in the online version of Honolulu’s “Star Advertiser,” a GM executive, Joe Mercurio, GM’s manager, new business development, made that announcement at the 2010 Asia Pacific Clean Energy Expo.  Last May, the car manufacturer announced a pilot arrangement with Hawaii’s Gas Company, to set up hydrogen fueling stations on Oahu in what looked ...

September 2010

Transitions:
* H&FCL has learned belatedly that one of the early European hydrogen pioneers, Sweden’s Olof Tegström, died last year on May 19, 2009. He was 78. He is survived by his wife and four children. Tegström  converted his 1,334 sq. foot house in Haernoesand on Sweden’s east central coast to hydrogen in the mid-1980s, with power provided by a 72-foot tall windmill that provided electricity for an SPE electrolyzer that produced one standard cubic meter of hydrogen per hour from tap water. He also converted his Saab 900 to hydrogen, and he figured he spent close to ...
Briefly Noted:
* Desertec Plans First Big Solar Power Plant in Morocco:  the Desertec Industrial Initiative, a joint effort  of more than a dozen major companies and banks that plans to produce solar electricity in North Africa and the Middle East for Europe, expects to build the first big solar plant park in Morocco. A July 7 story in the German business paper “Handelsblatt” quoted Paul van Son, the Dutch head of the initiative, as saying his group expects to build a plant producing anywhere between 500 and 1,000 MW in that country, both for Morocco’s domestic market but ...
MIT Team Designs Low-Cost Non-Precious Catalyst for Future Home Energy Systems
 BOSTON, MA – A new catalyst, stitched together from abundant cheap raw materials and replacing pricey platinum, could make inexpensive renewable energy available in developing countries, according to an MIT chemistry researcher.Speaking at last month’s national meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) here, Prof. Daniel Nocera said he and his team have developed a new durable cobalt- and nickel-based catalyst that is not only much less costly but also much more efficient than existing catalysts: it increases oxygen evolution in electrolysis about 200-fold.These ...
ISE Corp. Files for Chapter 11 Reorganization After Failing to Raise New Capital
SAN DIEGO, CA – ISE Corporation, the developer of hybrid and energy storage systems and fuel cell integrator, last month filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.In an Aug. 10 annnouncement, the San Diego-based company and its parent, ISE Limited, said ISE had been seeking to raise additional capital through debt equity or other efforts, such as asset sales as well as other alternatives, but “was unsuccessful in raising such additional capital or completing a strategic transaction.”During the restructuring, ISE will continue business,  and ...
Fast Forward:
 * Is  Hyundai Getting Down to (Fuel Cell) Business?  The Korean carmaker is said to be getting ready to unveil a fuel cell vehicle in 2012, reports Autoweek.com, the blog published by Crain Communications “Autoweek” magazine. Production volumes for the first two years are expected to be limited to 500 to 1,000 units, according to the blog, ramping up to 10,000 by 2015. * More UK Underground Coal Gasification with Alkaline Fuel Cells: A year-old clean coal group, B9 Coal, has picked AFC Energy’s alkaline fuel cell technology as key component in a carbon ...
Opinion: Spending Billions on Battery Cars, Nothing on Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles is Not Rational
By Sig Gronich Editor’s Note: This is another in a series of occasional columns intended as a forum for readers. Contributions are welcome. The editor reserves the right to reject suggestions and edit material to fit our format without, of course, changing the author’s basic views. I have been intimately involved in the renewable energy sector since my days as an engineer at McDonnell Douglas in 1972 and ultimately at the Department of Energy from 1975 to 2007.  I remember running into my boss’s office after reading A. F. Hildebrandt and L. L. ...
AeroEnvironment’s Global Observer undergoing ground taxi tests. Aviation: H2-Fueled Global Observer Takes Off; Horizon PEM Fuel Cell for Israeli UAV
EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, CA – AeroVironment’s unmanned hydrogen i.c.-engined Global Observer plane completed its first one-hour test flight here in early August, the company announced last month. A competitor in the demonstration program organized by several government agencies, Boeing’s Phantom Eye, was due to be shipped to Edwards late this summer (H&FCL Aug. 10).AeroVironment’s Global Observer, which is designed to fly at altitudes of between 55,000 and 65,000 feet for five to seven days, crawled up gingerly to a mere 4,000 feet during that first test flight. ...
Events:
 The "21st World Energy Congress," is scheduled for Sept. 12-16 in Montreal. Details: Marie Cloutier, Marie.cloutier@wecmontreal2010.ca, 514/397-1666. The "15th World Clean Air Congress" will be held Sept. 12-16 at the Westin Bayshore Conference Centre in Vancouver, BC, Canada. Details: Megan Gallagher, 412/904-6020, mgallagher@awma.or; www.awma.org   The "3rd Annual Utility Scale Solar Summit 2010" is scheduled for Sept. 13-15 at the Hilton Del Mar Hotel, San Diego, CA. Details: Infocast, 818/888-4444, mail@infocastevents.com; ...
DoE News: DoE Relaunches Advisory Board for Secretary of Energy Steven Chu
WASHINGTON, DC – Former and current CEOs of major companies, government officials, academics and scientists make up a new Secretary of Energy Advisory Board (SEAB) announced last month.The 12-member board was initially chartered two decades ago to provide the secretary with external advice but it was eliminated by the Bush administration. The board.members “will be providing their expertise and experience at a critical time for our country as we chart a new course toward a clean energy future,” Secretary Chu said.The board will meet twice a year and will provide advice and ...
A computer-generated image of the DLR/Lange Antares H3 in flight, with the four pods housing fuel cells and hydrogen fuel tanks and the tail-mounted propeller clearly visible.  
Aviation: DLR Gears Up for Transatlantic Fuel Cell Flight With 2nd Generation Antares H3
STUTTGART – It still isn’t official, but signals are getting stronger that the German Aerospace Center DLR is gearing up for a transatlantic flight with a fuel cell plane, possibly in 2011. DLR announced last month that work had gotten underway building a bigger, better performing version of the Antares DLR-H2 fuel cell-powered motorglider that made its maiden flight just about a year ago (H&FCL Aug. 09).The new second-generation plane, dubbed Antares H3, is being constructed at DLR’s partner, Lange Research Aircraft GmbH, a recent offshoot of Lange Aviation, ...
Altergy Systems to Set Up Shop in S. Africa, Marks Launch of Hydrogen S. Africa Strategy
 FOLSOM, CA – Altergy Systems, the Folsom-based manufacturer of fuel cell power systems has set up a joint venture with the South African government’s Department of Science and Technology (DST) and with Anglo Platinum’s  Platinum Growth Metals Development Fund (PGM) to manufacture and market fuel cells in South Africa and other Sub-Saharan countries.The new company, Clean Energy Investments Inc., will be headquartered in Pretoria. The Fund and the ministry invested undisclosed amounts in the company which will be co-owned by Altergy; PGM invested in Altergy as ...

August 2010

Transitions:
 * FuelCell  Energy, Inc., Danbury, CT has promoted Anthony (“Tony”) Rauseo to the newly created position of Chief Operating Officer. He will be responsible for closely integrating manufacturing operations with the supply chain, product development and quality. Rauseo previously was vice president of engineering and chief engineer. He joined the company in 2005….The Brussels-based European Hydrogen Association’s General Assembly has appointed Ian Williamson as its new president. Williamson succeeds Lars Sjunneson who has led the organization since 2005. ...
Interview: Proton Energy’s Sullivan Placed “Times” H2 Ad Because of Frustration
WALLINGFORD, CT – On June 1, readers of the sober, gray “New York Times” found a full-page ad in the front section (H&FCL, July 10) that told them that the BP blowout disaster in the Gulf of Mexico could have been avoided if only gasoline were replaced with hydrogen:“IN THE TIME IT TAKES TO CLEAN UP THE DISASTER IN THE GULF…HYDROGEN CAN MAKE GASOLINE A FUEL OF THE PAST.” Said the page 17 advertisement.  “All the major carmakers have hydrogen cars – 3 have set major production for 2014,” and “Hydrogen is proven to be as ...
Singapore’s first fuel cell hybrid bus, the GreenLite, designed jointly in seven months by Singapore’s Nanyang Technical University and Beijing’s Tsinghua University, and built with Chinese components. Singapore Launches First Hybrid Fuel Cell Bus, a Joint China-Singapore Project
SINGAPORE – This city-state’s first hydrogen hybrid fuel cell bus was unveiled here last month, ferrying guests and media in an inaugural run around Nanyang Technological University’s (NTU) Yunnan Garden campus. Called the GreenLite, the 12-meter, 32-seat, (50 passenger maximum) low-floor city bus is the outcome of a joint research project of NTU and Beijing’s Tsinghua University in partnership with Singapore’s Land Transport Authority, Singapore’s bus company SBS Transit and Higer Bus Company Ltd., Jiangsu, described as one of the fastest developing bus ...
DoE News: Proton Energy Wins ARPA-E R&D Grant for Alkaline Reversible Electrolysis Device
WASHINGTON, DC/WALLINGFORD, CT – Connecticut-based Proton Energy Systems is the winner of one of 43 ARPA-E research contracts announced by Energy Secretary Chu last month, and the company is partner in a second project.Both involve the storage and buffering of utility-scale large volumes of solar and wind energy via hydrogen. Chu announced what were described as “cutting edge” and “groundbreaking energy research projects” totaling $92 million in funding from the Energy Department’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. “These innovative ideas ...
A map of the emerging Scandinavian hydrogen highway network. Once it reaches this stage of completion, hydrogen cars can drive all the way from Berlin, at the bottom of the map, to Stavanger and beyond to Bergen in Norway – a distance some 2000 kilometers, or 1,250 miles. Europe’s First Large Hydrogen Fuel Cell Lighthouse Project to Launch in Norway
 MUNICH/OSLO – The first European large Lighthouse Project will get underway next spring in Oslo with 17 fuel cell vehicles and a new large hydrogen station. Dubbed H2moves Scandinavia, the project, announced last month,  has a total budget of Euro 19.5 million ($25.4 million) mostly funded by the European Union and is projected to run for three years, including two years of operation of the cars and fueling station. But is likely to keep running beyond that date because of the expected increases in fuel cell life expectancy beyond the current 3,000 hour target, Dr. Ulrich ...
Fast Forward:
* McKinsey Study Reportedly Gives Thumbs Up to European Hydrogen Infrastructure Plans: The full document still hasn’t been released (H&FCL April, June 10), but some people who have seen a recent draft say it’s very positive, stating hydrogen and fuel cell technology are key for coming to grips with climate change. Coming from McKinsey, this is seen as especially important because an earlier McKinsey U.S. report from March 2009, “Roads toward a low-carbon future: Reducing CO2 emissions from passenger vehicles in the global road transportation system,” focused ...
Events
 The "New Energy Symposium - 2010" will be held Aug. 9-10 at 7 World Trade Center, New York, NY. Details: Pradeep Haldar, 518/437-8686, phaldar@uamail.albany.edu; www.neny.org/nes/2010/hom.The "2010 Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit and Expo" will be held Aug. 30-Sept. 2 at the Hawaii Convention Center, Honolulu, HI. Details: Laura Benold, CTSI, 512/692-7267, laura@ct-si.org.The "CAPCOA Climate Change Forum" is scheduled for Aug. 30-31 at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis Hotel, San Francisco, CA. Details: 888/993-0302, www.capcoaclimateforum.com.The ...
DoE News: Annual Review (Cont’d): Fuel Cell Costs, Catalysts, Home Fuelers Are Discussed
WASHINGTON, DC – With the debate between fuel cell and battery supporters over the issue of competing power sources for cars and trucks continuing full tilt, the cost of fuel cells are arguably of primary interest to experts and consumers alike.Two of the roughly 600 papers reviewed at the June 7-11 U.S. Energy Department’s annual Merit Review (H&FCL July 10) examined the issue in great detail in back-to-back presentations. The bottom line seemed to be that much progress had been made and continued to be made, but the goal of full cost competitiveness with i.c. engines still ...
Briefly Noted:
 * New California Center to Get $122 Million for Fuels From Sunlight: The award is for five years to a multidisciplinary team of scientists to set up an Energy Innovation Hub to develop what are described as “revolutionary methods to generate fuels directly from sunlight,” the U.S. Energy Department said in an announcement. The Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP), to be led by the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DoE) Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), will bring together ...
Boeing’s Phantom Eye at center stage in a company auditorium in St. Louis. One of the two hydrogen i.c. Ford truck engines and its propeller, as yet uninstalled, is on the right. Boeing Unveils Unmanned Hydrogen High-Altitude Surveillance Plane
ST. LOUIS, MO – Clean aviation moved a step forward last month with the announcement by the Boeing Company that it has built and will demonstrate a hydrogen-fueled high-altitude unmanned plane that eventually will be able to fly for up to ten days.In its first smaller 150-foot wing span version - about three quarters that of a Boeing 747’s 195 feet -  rolled out at the company’s Phantom Works here, the Phantom Eye is expected to be able to cruise at 65,000 feet for up to four days carrying a payload of up to 450 lbs.  It is designed for intelligence gathering, ...
Ballard’s new trailer-mounted 1 MW CLEARgen utility generator, outside company headquarters in Vancouver. It may be the world’s biggest PEM unit. 
Ballard Unveils MW-Sized Utility-Scale PEM Generator, Said to be World’s Largest
VANCOUVER, BC –Said to be the largest PEM fuel cell generator yet, Ballard Power System has announced it has completed testing of a MW-sized unit.The CLEARgen utility-scale unit, mounted in a truck trailer, has been tested to a power level of one MW, but the company says bigger outputs are feasible. Ballard hasn’t said so, but CLEARgen may represent a bundling and adaptation of the company’s 150 kW FC Velo city-HD6 PEM fuel cell currently offered for bus and heavy duty applications. The company’s fuel cell product portfolio describes this unit’s performance ...

July 2010

Transitions
 * Larry Burns, General Motors’ former corporate vice president of research and development and strategic planning and for more than a decade one of the strongest international voices supporting hydrogen and fuel cell technology, has been appointed professor of engineering practice, industrial and operations engineering at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Additionally, Burns has accepted several other positions since his retirement from GM (H&FCL Aug. 09): director of the Roundtable on Sustainable Mobility, The Earth Institute, Columbia University; senior advisor to the ...
Seen Elsewhere: Proton Energy/SunHydro’s Full-Page Hydrogen Ad in “New York Times”
NEW YORK – For those among us who don’t get to read the increasingly rare print edition of the “New York Times,” here (resized to fit screen proportions) is the full-page June 1, page A-17 ad in support of hydrogen in the newspaper, paid for by Tom Sullivan, chairman of Proton Energy and SunHydro.We will run a Q&A interview with Sullivan in our next issue. 
New NRC Report Urges Continued H2 R&D Alongside I.C., Electric Vehicles
WASHINGTON — The FreedomCAR public-private partnership to develop more fuel-efficient vehicles that generate fewer greenhouse gases should continue to include fuel cells and other hydrogen technologies in its research and development portfolio, says a new report by the National Research Council (NRC) released just before the end of June.  Although the partnership’s recent emphasis on technologies that could be ready for in the nearer term - advanced internal combustion engines and plug-in electric vehicles, for instance, - is warranted, R&D on hydrogen and fuel cells is ...
Horizon Launches Handheld $99 Fuel Cell Charger for Portable Electronics
 SINGAPORE – Horizon Fuel Cell Technologies, best known for fuel cell toy racers and the engine for the UK’s Riversimple concept city car (H&FCL July 09) last month  launched a pocket hydrogen fuel cell charger for small electronic devices.The MiniPak “personal power center” delivers 1.5-2 W continuous power at 5V/0.4A via a standard USB port and uses refillable Hydrostik hydrogen hydride fuel cartridges to store up to 12 Wh of net energy. The MiniPak weighs 155 gram (2.8 oz), including the cartridge.   The 90-gram cartridges are a little ...
Fast Forward:
 * Will BMW Join the Zeitgeist and Shift to Fuel Cell Power? Maybe. Nothing has been decided, but a knowledgeable industry source has told H&FCL that the company’s management is in deep, serious deliberations whether fuel cells should be considered as main propulsive power source –  not just as an onboard APU for hotel loads such as air conditioning and entertainment electronics looked at by the company’s engineers years ago (H&FCL April 99, Oct. 00, March 01), or a small added fuel cell for city driving, demonstrated earlier this year in a research ...
Fuel Cell Hybrid Version of Venerable Black Cab Debuts in UK Capital
  LONDON – Just about two years after it was first announced, the fuel cell hybrid version of London’s venerable black taxi made its official debut here last month.   Parked in front of City Hall and with the unmistakable London Tower Bridge as decorative backdrop, the squeaky clean zero-emission prototype version of London’s quintessential for-hire conveyance was presented by Henri Winand, CEO of fuel cell developer Intelligent Energy, left in photo, and London’s deputy mayor for policing and chair of the London Hydrogen Partnership, Kit Malthouse.  ...
Events
                A “Storage Week 2010” conference for grid-scale energy storage and renewable integration will be held July 12-15 at the Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego, CA. Details: 818/888-4444, mail@infocastinc.com; www.infocastinc.com/index.php/conference/storage10.                 The “World Hydrogen Energy Summit” will be held July 15-17 at the Lutfi Kirdar Convention Center in Istanbul, Turkey. Details: Prof. ...
DoE News: Batteries, Hybrids, Take Precedence over Hydrogen, Fuel Cells at Merit Review
WASHINGTON, DC – Relegation of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies to the back seat, behind a focus on efficiency, battery electrics and hybrids, was evident in various ways at the Energy Department’s Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meeting here last month.In terms of size, it was apparently the biggest event ever: the June 7-11 meeting drew more than 1,600 registered attendees who were flooded with information from about 600 presentations of which some 85% were reviewed by more than 300 reviewers. Last year, close to 1,300 people showed up to take in about the same ...
Catalysis: A Platinum Super-Catalyst & Search for Platinum-Based Catalyst Systems
MENLO PARK, CA/COLLEGE STATION, TX – A much more reactive type of platinum and a, so far hypothetical, platinum-based composite material offer prospects of lowering costs for this essential, and expensive,  catalyst for fuel cells.The first one, waggishly dubbed by some “platinum-on-steroids”, boosts this precious metal’s catalytic capabilities by a so-called dealloying process that researchers Anders Nilsson, Peter Strasser and Hirohito Ogasawara at the Energy Department’s Stanford University’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory in Menlo Park and ...
Briefly Noted:
* Europe Faces Shortages of High-Tech Mineral Raw Materials: Platinum group metals and rare earth materials, essential for fuel cells and catalysts, are among a group of 14 critical mineral materials that a group of European Commission experts has identified as presenting possible bottlenecks for future high technology advances. The group’s report, the first-ever overview on access to these materials in the European Union,  will be the basis for a forthcoming strategy designed to ensure access to these materials that’s expected to be published this fall. The experts, after ...

June 2010

China’s Minister of Science and Technology, Prof. Gang Wan, delivers his keynote address at the World Hydrogen Energy Conference on his country’s progress in developing hydrogen and fuel cell technologies. Strong Gov’t, Industry Support Buoys Upbeat World Hydrogen Energy Conference
  ESSEN, GERMANY – Music to American ears, government and industry in Germany are singing from the same song sheet these days when it comes to hydrogen and fuel cell energy technologies. That solidarity came through loud and clear during the opening plenary session of the 18th World Hydrogen Energy Conference May 16-21 here in Essen, one of Europe’s designated 2010 Cities of Culture - heart of the country’s once-mighty iron-and-steel industry, the Ruhr area in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.   Germany’s Transportation and Urban Affairs ...
Transitions
* The Energy Department’s Hydrogen Technical Advisory Committee (HTAC) has four new members: Harol (Hal) Koyama who is president and CEO of fuel cell developer IdaTech LLC, Bend, OR; Robert David Grober, Frederick Phineas Rose Professor of Applied Physics at Yale University and founder and acting CEO of Sonic Golf, Inc.; Peter D. Bond, senior advisor to the director, Brookhaven National Laboratory; and Mark J. Cardillo, executive director of the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation. The terms of five panel members are expiring: Philip Ross, Janice Hicks, Art Katsaros, Ken Schultz, and ...
Gov. Schwarzenegger gets briefed on the new Mercedes B-Class F-Cell car during a tour of exhibits at the National Hydrogen Association Conference & Expo. Gov. Schwarzenegger Urges NHA to “Wake Up Federal Government” to Hydrogen
LONG BEACH, CA — He wasn’t listed in the printed program, but California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s surprise appearance and speech at the National Hydrogen Association’s 2010 annual conference here last month gave a big boost to its participants. “This is really great to finally receive this great, great award,” Schwarzenegger intoned deadpan when he was presented with the Senator Spark Matsunaga Memorial Award, one of three presented by NHA. Cracking up the audience with laughter, he added, “I want to thank the Academy and all the amazing Oscar ...
NEDO & NOW Sign Information MoU During World Hydrogen Energy Conference
ESSEN, GERMANY – In yet another example of closer ties between the two nations leading in hydrogen energy development, Germany and Japan’s principal umbrella groups announced a new information exchange agreement last month.During the welcoming reception on the eve of the World Hydrogen Energy Conference here,  Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) and Germany’s Nationale Organisation Wasserstoff- und Brenstoffzellentechnologie (NOW -  National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Organization) signed a Memorandum of ...
Hydrogen Car(s) in Hawaii: GM & Gas Co. Team Up in Fueling Infrastructure Pilot
HONOLULU, HI/DETROIT, MI - In what looks like a genuinely creative advance, General Motors is teaming with a Hawaii gas company in setting up hydrogen fueling stations on the island of Oahu.The pilot arrangement announced last month with the gas producer and distributor, The Gas Company, is unique: given Oahu’s island geography and other factors, it could serve as an ideal dress rehearsal venue for an eventual fuel cell infrastructure rollout on the mainland.And significantly, it is described as the leading edge of a broad consortium of federal, state, non-profit and education ...
Briefly Noted:
 * A Solar Hydrogen Powered Water Purification System: New Jersey energy innovator Mike Strizki, best known for his hydrogen-powered home power systems here and in the Carribbean (H&FCL Aug. 06, June 08), has designed and built a solar powered electrolyser and fuel cell system to run an air-droppable water purification plant-cum-community energy station system. Strizki and his partners, water system experts Brad Carlson and David Squires, demonstrated their “Hydra” plant at Strizki’s hydrogen-powered grid-independent home in Hopewell, NJ last month. Energy comes ...
Book Review: Reinventing the Automobile: Reviewed by Robert Rose.
Reinventing the Automobile, Personal Urban Mobility in the 21st Century. By William J Mitchell, Christopher E Borroni-Bird and Lawrence D. Burns. 2010, MIT Press; 210 pages, 240 charts and illustrations; $21.95 Reviewed by Robert Rose William J Mitchell, Christopher E Borroni-Bird and Lawrence D. Burns have published a book on the future of urban mobility that is nearly square ( 8.25" x 8.5’); one presumes this is to be different.  Yet the authors believe  tomorrow’s cities will require a conformity beyond imagining in today’s world. This ...
Events
                The “2010 U.S. Department of Energy Hydrogen Program and Vehicle Technologies Program Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meeting” will be held June 7-11 in Washington, DC at the Washington Wardman Park Hotel. Details: Rich Bechtold, RLBechtold@alliance-technicalservices.com, 443/812-3921.                The “5th Forum on New Materials” is scheduled for June 13-18 in Montecatini Terme, Italy. Details: ...
Fast Forward:
* Overheard at WHEC-18: German electrical equipment giant Siemens is apparently gearing up to move into PEM electrolysis big time. The details are not at all clear, but it appears the company sees big potential in producing large amounts of pressurized hydrogen in utility-scale amounts from intermittent renewables – solar and wind – and storing hydrogen in large underground reservoirs for both utility operations and perhaps also as transportation fuel. Siemens also is reported to be working on hydrogen-fueled gas turbines for power plants at research facilities in St. Petersburg, ...

May 2010

Power for Electrics via PV, Wind Needs Less Land than Biodiesel, Says New Study
ULM, GERMANY – Providing the energy to run cars and trucks via renewably generated electricity or hydrogen is much less demanding in terms of the acreage required than fueling them with biodiesel, a new analysis concludes.  The Center for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research (ZSW) here says that, among other things, fueling an internal combustion engine car with biodiesel would require about 250 times as much arable land to plant and harvest rape to make the fuel than the amount needed to set up a photovoltaic system to produce an equal amount of energy for an electric car.ZSW, ...
TRANSITIONS:
 * Former UTC Power president Jan van Dokkum has joined Silicon Valley venture capital group Kleiner Perkins Cufield & Byers as a new operating partner. The group was instrumental in launching Bloom Energy Corp., Sunnyvale, CA and its 100 kW Bloom Energy Server, better known as the mystery Bloom Box (H&FCL Jan., March 10), a regenerative solid oxide fuel cell. Van Dokkum who left UTC Power a little more than a year ago (H&FCL Jan. 09), is a member of  DoE’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technical Advisory Committee (HTAC)………Jonathan Lundy, a former ...
CA, CT, NY, OH, SC Are Top U.S. Fuel Cell States, Says Fuel Cells 2000
WASHINGTON, DC – The five leading American states in terms of fuel cell activity are, in alphabetical order, California, Connecticut, New York, Ohio and South Carolina, says the non-profit Fuel Cells 2000 organization.The group analyzed the country’s seven regions, compiling data state by state on activities, fuel cell supportive policies, installations, and demonstrations. The reasons for picking those five were different for each state, but the common denominator was “they all recognize that establishing a fuel cell-friendly climate brings environmental benefits and jobs ...
Syn-Methane is Solution to Storing Wind, Solar Electricity, Say European Scientists
STUTTGART, GERMANY – Turning conventional notions of renewable energy storage upside down, German and Austrian scientists have come up with a technology to store surplus solar or wind electricity as synthetic natural gas.In what’s claimed to be a technology First, the process combines electrolytic hydrogen with  carbon dioxide in a new methanization process to produce synthetic methane – or, to coin an oxymoron, synthetic natural gas.Developed by scientists at the Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Center (ZSW) and at the Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy and Energy ...
Conference Season: Sales Success Stories, New Technologies Mark Small Fuel Cells Conference
CAMBRIDGE, MA – The speakers came from all over the globe to the 12th “Small Fuel Cells 2010” conference here April 12-13 to deliver some two dozen presentations, plus posters, covering the waterfront, from market successes to hybrid portable systems:Topics included German fuel cell shipments in the tens of thousands; an Italian hybrid PEM system integrated with a PV panel and a PEM electrolyzer; a Korean direct methanol fuel cell evalued by the U.S. military; an Argentinian gas diffusion layer/catalyst support; a Swedish teabag-type fuel pouch for small fuel cell chargers; ...
National Hydrogen Association Issues U.S. Hydrogen Market Report
WASHINGTON, DC – More than 20 billion kilograms (kg) of hydrogen -  20 million metric tons – of hydrogen were produced in the United States in 2008, with prices ranging from $5/kg to $20/kg,  according to a new study.The 58-page report, “Hydrogen and Fuel Cells: The U.S. Market Report,” prepared by Technology Transition Corp. (TTC) here for the National Hydrogen Association (NHA) was released in March. It focuses on the small portion of the total so-called “merchant hydrogen” market that produces, stores and uses hydrogen as a fuel. TTC manages ...
Fast Forward:
 * The Third Industrial Revolution Begins in Rome: That’s what Jeremy Rifkin, public policy activist and author of, most recently, "The Empathic Civilization," and earlier, of "The Hydrogen Economy," (H&FCL Sept. 02) plans and hopes. Rifkin and his organization, the Bethesda, MD-based Foundation on Economic Trends, expect to release reports on long-term economic action plans some time next month for both the Italian capital and for the region surrounding the Dutch city of Utrecht, based on concepts of clean non- or low-carbon energy, including, ...
EVENTS
 The “2010 National Hydrogen Association Conference and Expo” will be held May 3-6 at the Long Beach Convention Center in Long Beach, CA. Details: 202/223-5547, info@HydrogenConference.org; www.hydrogenconference.org.                The “2010 Ohio Fuel Cell Symposium” will be held May 6-7 at the Great Lakes Science Center, Cleveland, OH. Details: www.fuelcellcorridor.com.                  The “Energy ...
High expectations: Dr. Michael Stelter of the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems explains the eneramic system           (Photo by Sven Geitmann).
Conference Season: Travel Chaos Hits Hannover Fair; H2+Fuel Cell Exhibit is Less Affected, is a Success
HANNOVER, GERMANY – Energy conservation and efficiency increases were supposed to be the main themes of the April 19-23 Hannover Fair here.But then the eruption of that Icelandic volcano with that unpronounceable name, Eyjafjallajokull, got in the way: some 10% of the exhibitors, as well as a large number of visitors, didn’t make it to the fairgrounds, according to the fair organizers because of  the thousands of flight cancellations throughout Europe. Still, the 16th annual Group Exhibit Hydrogen + Fuel Cells did better than most: only six of the 141 exhibitors were ...
Conference Season: CALSTART Workshop: California, British Columbia Are FC Transit Bus Hot Spots
 LOS ANGELES – California and British Columbia are the two North American focal points of transit fuel cell bus development, but competition from battery-powered buses that can recharge their batteries on the fly is alive and getting good-sized trials in California.Fuel cell buses are also in demonstration programs in half a dozen cities around the country with diverse climates, and more may be coming up. These are among the principal take-away impressions from a one-day workshop last month organized by CALSTART, the Pasadena, CA-based nonprofit consortium of clean transportation ...
DoE News: ARPA-E Announces 37 Advanced Energy R&D Projects, 7 Are H2-Related
 WASHINGTON, DC — Hydrogen figures prominently in seven of 37 “transformational energy research projects” totaling $107 million, announced just before the end of last month by Vice President Joe Biden and Energy Secretary Steven Chu.The common denominator of those seven is that hydrogen will be a component of processes that will be designed to produce something else: “electrofuels” such as butanol, bio-oils, octanol and biodiesel.The awards, announced April 29 at a Recovery Act Cabinet Meeting, will be funded through DoE’s Advanced  Research ...

April 2010

U. Wisconsin Researchers Devise Way of Utilizing Waste Energy to Make Hydrogen
     MADISON, WI – If the University of Wisconsin’s Huifang Xu has his way, that old adage, “Waste Not, Want Not,” will take on a whole new, welcome meaning in an age of growing energy scarcity.Xu and his three colleagues aren’t talking about material waste such as wrecked cars, household garbage or tossed-out weeks-old pizza, but tiny amounts of wasted energy: traffic noise, water flowing or even energy wasted in walking.       Xu, a geologist and crystal specialist, and his team have grown nano versions of ...
An image of the ATR72 liquid hydrogen-fueled  regional freighter. The two containers at each end, in between the freight containers, represent the hydrogen tanks. New Study Examines Regional & Intercontinental H2-Fueled Transport Planes
     HAMBURG/BRAUNSCHWEIG, GERMANY – Airlines, manufacturers and research institutions, faced with escalating fuel prices and emission constraints, are looking again at hydrogen as fuel for big transport planes. One of the latest examples of this interest is the German “Green Freighter” study, picking up where the German Airbus “Cryoplane” research project of the 1990s (The Hydrogen Letter, April 89, H&FCL Aug. 00), the Russian Tupolev  TU-155 passenger jet which actually flew in the 1980s (The Hydrogen Letter Oct. 88, Aug. ...
Transitions:
 Larry Burns, General Motors’ former vice president for research and development, has joined the board of directors of fuel cell developer Nuvera, of Billerica, MA and Milan, Italy. Burns retired from GM last year (H&FCL Aug. 09) where he was generally regarded as the company’s primary champion for hydrogen and fuel cell technology. He and his former colleague Chris Borroni-Bird, GM’s director of advanced vehicle technology concepts, have co-authored a new book, "Reinventing the Automobile," with William J. Mitchell, professor of architecture at the ...
Toyota Deploys 10 FC Hybrids at JFK, First Wave of 100-Plus U.S. Car Demo Fleet
NEW YORK/BERLIN – Next time you’re sitting on the tarmac at New York’s JFK airport in your plane, twiddling your thumbs as you wait for takeoff, take a look out the window:Chances are you may see a white, quite standard-looking  Toyota Highlander SUV, outfitted with typical airport yellow flashers and warning lights, driving on the tarmac and weaving around terminals and hangars, planes, luggage tractors, fueling trucks and other airport vehicles.That Highlander is not your normal Highlander, but it’s one of small fleet of hydrogen fuel-cell powered vehicles ...
Crowded: a view of one of the aisles of FC Expo at Tokyo’s Big Sight exhibition center Optimism is Evident at Tokyo’s FC Expo, World’s Biggest Technology Showcase
     TOKYO – Now in its sixth year and still growing, the  International Hydrogen & Fuel Cell Expo here last month pretty much cemented its claim to being the world’s largest fuel cell event. And judging by the throngs in the aisles and number of exhibitors, it confirmed the impression that hydrogen energy and fuel cell technologies have achieved greater acceptance and are likely to be phased in earlier in Asia, especially in Japan and Korea, than anywhere else in the world.  Just about every major player in the global fuel cell world, ...
Fast Forward:
* Spreading German Hydrogen Infrastructure Plans to All of Europe? Details aren’t clear and it’s all very hush-hush so far, but about two dozen of Europe’s heavy lifters in hydrogen energy are banding together to see whether Germany’s concepts for a national hydrogen infrastructure (H&FCL Oct. 09) can be extended to all of Europe. These companies, and, apparently, representatives from all European governments have hired a consulting firm - name unknown - to examine the idea. H&FCL has been told there is a confidentiality clause in the study contracts to keep ...
Events
                 The “CPV-6 International Conference on Concentrating Photovoltaic Systems” will be held April 7-9 at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems in Freiburg, Germany. It also incorporates now the “TPV-9 World Conference” on thermophotovoltaics. Details: Dr. Andreas Bett, +49/761/45 88-52 57, Andreas.Bett@ise.fraunhofer.de; www.cpv-conference.org.                The “Small Fuel Cells 2010 ...
CORRECTION:
The first name of the CEO of Israel’s Cellera fuel cell company mentioned in the March 2010 “Fast Forward” column was misspelled in the newsletter’s print version. The correct name is Ziv (not Zvi) Gottesfeld. Also, the name of the German professor who conducted Due Diligence for BrainToVentures was in error. He is Prof. Walter Czarnetzki (not Czarnowski).
Briefly Noted:
   * More Hydrogen Stations:  A total of 18 hydrogen stations opened worldwide last year, bringing the total  to 206,  according to the second annual global count by H2stations.org, a website of the hydrogen and fuel cell internet portal of TÜV SÜD and of Ludwig-Boelkow-Systemtechnik (LBST), the German hydrogen and fuel cell consultancy. Another 108 stations are currently in various stages of planning and design. Last year, Germany’s total was 25 stations, “with another 10 stations to be added soon”, said LBST’s expert, ...
An image of the various drivetrain components in BMW’s new experimental Series1-based fuel cell/i.c. engine hybrid.   Best of Both Worlds: BMW Shows Fuel Cell/IC Hybrid Research Vehicle
     MUNICH – Marking the 25th anniversary of its research and technology group, German carmaker BMW broke new ground for the company with a uniquely configured four-wheel drive fuel cell/internal combustion hybrid research vehicle.This research vehicle, based on the S-1 Series model, and shown here for the first time during the anniversary festivities last month, combines an 88 kW (118 HP) internal combustion engine that drives the front wheels – a break with BMW’s traditional rear wheel drive layout. Another break with the past is the use of fuel ...

March 2010

Transitions:
* The UK’s Intelligent Energy has hired Steve Hunton, the former head of global sales at Lotus Engineering, as its new group sales director. Hunton had been with Lotus for more than 20 yeas, initially as part of the procurement team and in charge of global sales and marketing since 2004……..…..Boston-Power Inc., a manufacturer of lithium-ion batteries, reports that auto industry executive Robert C. Purcell, Jr. has joined the board of directors of the Westborough, MA-based company. Purcell worked for General Motors for three decades, leading, among other units, ...
A leviathan bestrides the land: A rendering of what Boston Dynamics’ LS3 rough-terrain walking cargo robot might look like.  (LS3 image courtesy of Boston Dynamics © 2009) DARPA'S Four-Legged Walking Cargo Robot May be Candidate for Fuel Cell Propulsion
BOSTON, MA – Even though it looks like one, it’s not some kind of sci-fi Star Wars machine but the concept of a rough terrain cargo carrier that may run on fuel cells:  Called the LS3 (for Legged Squad Support System), it’s a robot cargo carrier that the Marine Corps wants to develop to carry loads in areas that traditional wheeled support vehicles cannot traverse. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) announced at the start of last month it had awarded a $32 million contract to Boston Dynamics, Waltham, MA for a 30-month program to pay for detailed ...
Hydrogen, Fuel Cells Provide Transport, Light at Canada’s Winter Olympics
WHISTLER, BC, CANADA – The world’s eyes were fixated on the dashing skiers and glamorous skaters at the Winter Olympics here last month but the massive display of hydrogen hardware was perhaps of equal importance to clean-energy supporters. Overall, some 35 vehicles and another 15 hydrogen exhibits here and in Vancouver, some 78 miles to the south, offered a partial catalogue of what’s going on the field. The world’s largest single fleet of 20 BC Transit fuel cell buses, built by New Flyer, Winnipeg, and powered by Ballard fuel cell stacks, provided ...
NHA Webinar Details Structure, Outlook for German Hydrogen Infrastructure Plans
WASHINGTON, DC – Germany’s plans for launching a national hydrogen infrastructure announced last year could serve as a model for other countries, including the United States. This was the basic message of an hour-and-a-half intercontinental webinar organized jointly last month by the National Hydrogen Association (NHA) here, the Partnership for Advancing the Transition to Hydrogen (PATH), and in Europe, by Germany’s government-owned National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Organization (NOW) in Berlin and paid for by carmaker Daimler AG in Stuttgart. Interest in ...
The sleek Mercedes F 800 Style – plug-in or fuel cell power - with sliding rear doors. Mercedes Shows Plug-In-or-Fuel Cell Luxury Concept F 800 Style at Geneva Show
STUTTGART/GENEVA – It’s March, and it must be Geneva Auto Show time with flashy new automotive greenery: Mercedes-Benz is introducing its take-your-power-pick  F 800 Style concept car which comes in either of two flavors: plug-in hybrid or fuel cell (Not that you can buy either one) at the March 4-14 event.  The car which one automotive scribbler rated as  “seriously seductive,” offers a “flexible multi drive platform” of which plug-ins and fuel cells are apparently only two examples (what are some others? Steam power?) The plug-in ...
Fast Forward:
* Cutting Fuel Cell Costs – By Two-Thirds? That’s exactly what a small Israeli startup with a so far, distinct dislike for publicity, Cellera, proposes to do. Cellera, based in the Ceasarea Industrial Park halfways between Haifa and Tel Aviv, made a little splash in the clean-tech media and in the Jan. 31 German edition of the Financial Times with the announcement that two venture capital groups, Switzerland-based BrainsToVentures and Israel Cleantech Ventures, have jointly invested $2 million in Cellera in a second round of fund-raising (a 2008 first round netted $2 million for ...
The Intelligent Energy/Suzuki fuel cell hybrid scooter during a test run. Intelligent Energy/Suzuki Fuel Cell Scooter Debuts in Europe
LONDON – Fuel cell developer Intelligent Energy and Suzuki Corp. unveiled their fuel cell hybrid Burgman scooter at City Hall here last month, and the little clean machine got a pretty positive-to-glowing reception.  Launched at last year’s Tokyo Motor Show (H&FCL Nov. 09),  it was the scooter’s first European outing, and the latest example of a cooperation that started three years ago with the joint development of  the fuel cell-powered “Crosscage” motorcycle (H&FCL March 07). London’s deputy mayor in charge of police and ...
Fantasy May Be Driving Hydrogen Research, Two Social Scientists Maintain
SINGAPORE/CLEVELAND, OH – While the concept of a hydrogen economy continues to attract significant attention among politicians, media and "some" academics, two social scientists argue the attraction is based to a large extent on fantasy-based expectations. Benjamin K. Sovacool, assistant professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, and Dr. Brent Brossmann, of the Tim Russert Department of Communication and Theatre Arts, John Carroll University, Cleveland, OH wrote in a paper in the upcoming April issue of "Energy ...
UK Researchers Design Solar Water-Splitter with Inorganic Materials
NORWICH, ENGLAND – A team of scientists from the University of East Anglia here have developed a new water splitting device using inorganic materials that they describe as robust and efficient. The six scientists, led by Thomas Nann and Chris Pickett at the university’s energy materials laboratory, have developed an inorganic light harvesting array that is both inexpensive and environmentally benign. Indium phosphide quantum dots, combined with a low-cost electrocatalyst made from widely available elements, provide “a stable photoelectrochemical platform for hydrogen ...
Events
The inaugural "ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit" will be held March 1-3 at the Gaylord Convention Center, Washington, DC. Details: Sarah Wenning, 512/697-8849, wenning@techconnect.org; www.ct-si.org/events/EnergyInnovation.   The "6th International Hydrogen & Fuel Cell Expo 2010" will be held March 3-5 at Tokyo Big Sight, Japan. Details: Reed Exhibitions Japan, Takeshi Horiuchi, +81-3-3349-8576, fc@reedexpo.co.jp; www.fcexpo.jp/en/.   The Northeast Sustainable Energy Association’s (NESEA) "Building Energy 10" conference will be held ...
Correction:
The organization that produced the 10th Fuel Cell Directory was misidentified in last month’s issue (H&FCL Feb. 10, "Briefly Noted"). It is Fuel Cells 2000, a non-profit organization, not the US Fuel Cell Council.
Briefly Noted:
* Fueling with Hydrogen Beats Charging with Electrons: That’s one of three conclusion reached by Sandy Thomas, the former president of H2Gen Innovations, Inc., in a new analysis posted on his "Clean Car Options" website. "It is much easier, faster, and more efficient to move molecules of gasoline or molecules of hydrogen to fill car tanks than to move electrons to charge a battery," summarizes Thomas his findings. Also, even though plug-in electric vehicles may get to market earlier than fuel cell vehicles, they don’t do as good a job at cutting green house ...
Startup Bloom Energy Comes In from the Cold, Launches SOFC Fuel Cell Power Plant
SUNNYVALE, CA – With apologies to Chairman Mao, “Let a Hundred Boxes Bloom” may well be mantra and metaphor for the slickest, most attention-getting rollout yet of a fuel cell power plant in this emerging clean-energy industry. Emerging from nearly a decade of almost  unbroken secrecy, very generously funded startup Bloom Energy Corp. announced commercial availability of its 100 kW Bloom Energy ServerTM, more widely known as the fabled Bloom Box, in a Feb. 24 press conference at one of its first customers, eBay, here. Participating were top executives from more ...

February 2010

The business end of the new Vision “Tyrano” fuel cell hybrid truck in its intended environment, the Port of Los Angeles. Los Angeles Port to Test “Tyrano” Hybrid Fuel Cell Trucks for Port Drayage
  SAN PEDRO, CA -  Hoping to cut emissions in the heavily polluted air of the Los Angeles ports, the Port of Los Angeles is about to buy the first of ultimately eight Vision “Tyrano” fuel cell hybrid trucks for short and medium distance cargo transport.    The port’s spokesman, media relations director Phillip Sanfield, told H&FCL late last month the first one would be bought right away to start testing, and the other seven would be acquired this spring and summer based on how the status of the port’s grant applications “and other ...
Transitions
The California Fuel Cell Partnership reports that Dr. Andreas Truckenbrodt, chief executive officer for the Automotive Fuel Cell Cooperation, Vancouver, BC, has been named chair of the Partnership’s Steering Team for 2010. He succeeds Reginal Modlin, of Chrysler LLC. The chairmanship changes every year, rotating through the Partnership’s four categories: car manufacturers, energy provides, fuel cell technology companies, and government agencies.  The vice cbair becomes chairman the following year. Truckenbrodt was previously in charge of DaimlerChrysler’s Hybrid ...
World is Getting Warmer, Not Cooler, says NASA’s Jim Hansen
  NEW YORK – Despite what a number of climate change deniers have been charging recently, the world is not getting cooler  but warmer, reasserts a new essay by NASA climatologist James E. Hansen.     Entitled, “If  It’s That Warm, How Come It’s So Darned Cold?” Hansen and co-authors Reto Ruedy, Makiko Sato and Ken Leo, write that while there is a great deal of year-to-year and even decade-to-decade variability in both worldwide and hemispheric temperatures,  there is a long-term warming trend that has become strong and ...
Honda’s new elegant solar hydrogen fueling station at the carmaker’s California research center. Honda Starts Operating New Solar Electrolysis Hydrogen Fueling Station
  TORRANCE, CA - Almost a decade after it inaugurated its first hydrogen fueling station at its California research center here, Honda began operating its latest, most compact and most efficient solar hydrogen generation system yet.   The new system is engineered for an 8-hour slow overnight electrolytic fill producing half a kilogram of hydrogen - enough, says Honda, to meet daily commuting fuel needs predicated on driving 10,000 miles annually. Filling up the car slowly overnight eliminates the need for hydrogen storage in the home, and it would take advantage of ...
Scientists Propose Giant H2 Gas Tube Gun for Low-Cost Space Cargo Launches
  SAN DIEGO, CA – Jules, you may have been right after all:   That’s Jules as in Jules Verne, the fabled 19th century French science fiction writer who in his 1865 book, “From the Earth to the Moon” described a giant gun built in Florida that launched three men to our satellite (In the international hydrogen energy community, Verne is famous, of course, as the first person to describe the use of hydrogen as fuel in his 1874 novel ”The Mysterious Island.”)    Now, three former Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory ...
Fast Forward:
 * Hydrogen for the Long Haul: Fuel Cell-Powered Rail Freight? Buoyed by the reaction to its experimental hydrogen hybrid fuel cell switcher locomotive (H&FCL Aug. 09), developer, Golden, CO-based Vehicle Projects, is now pondering going to the next level: designing and building a long-haul hydrogen-fueled fuel cell freight locomotive. Nothing has been decided apparently so far. Officially, BNSF Railway which last month started testing the locomotive in its Los Angeles area operations, is keeping mum, but the signals are getting louder: the Jan. 29 “Orange County ...
Perspective: Sen. Dorgan, Key H2 Advocate in Congress, Announces Retirement; Who’s Next Leader?
 WASHINGTON, DC – Sen. Byron Dorgan’s  announcement that he will retire from the U.S. Senate at the end of 2010 came as a surprise to the American hydrogen and fuel cell communities, quite aside from the larger implications for the Democrats inside and outside of Congress.     The decision by this North Dakota Democrat deprives hydrogen and fuel cell supporters of their most outspoken and important champion in Congress.     Dorgan, whose clean-energy clout stems from his powerful positions as chairman of the Appropriations Energy and Water ...
Lincoln Composites’ hydrogen storage module, trailer and truck in front of the company’s new manufacturing facility in Lincoln, NE. DoE News: Advanced High-Pressure Tube Trailer Vessels Will Cut H2 Delivery Costs Dramatically
  WASHINGTON, DC – Refueling of cars and trucks with hydrogen is moving closer to economic reality with new technologies showing that the projected cost of delivering compressed hydrogen gas in tube trailers can be cut by some 40%.   The cost reduction from $4.23 per gallon of gasoline equivalent (gge; 2005 dollars) to a range of $2.85-3.14/gge in 2009 was achieved by the use of higher capacity trailers: higher-pressure carbon fiber composite fiber tubes, and glass fiber trailers with low-temperature gas.   These advances are expected to produce a 50% ...
Events
            The EUEC 2010 Energy & Environment Conference & Expo will be held Feb. 1-3 at the Phoenix Convention Center, Phoenix, AZ. Details: Brabhu Dayal, 520/615-3535, info@euec.com; www.euec.com;             The “10th International Colloquium on Environmentally Preferred Advanced Power Generation (ICEPAG)” will be held Feb. 9-11 at the Westin South Coast Plaza hotel, Costa Mesa, CA,. Details: ...
Briefly Noted
* Ballard Acquires European Foothold, Gets More Funding, New Sale in Europe: Ballard Power Systems, Vancouver, has acquired a $6 million controlling interest in Denmark’s Dantherm Power, as a partner with co-investors Danfoss A/S and Dantherm A/S. Dantherm Power designs and builds clean energy backup power systems that utilize Ballard hydrogen fuel cell technology for telecom manufacturers such as Motorola and Ericsson. The joint investment announced Jan. 18 is expected to speed up the sale of fuel cell backup power applications across Europe. Three days later, Ballard reported that, ...

January 2010

Transitions:
Westwood, MA-based fuel cell developer Acumentrics Corp. announced the retirement of president and COO Gary Simon and the appointment of Adam P. Briggs as new president and CEO, effective Jan. 1. Simon has led the company since 2004.  Briggs has served as president and COO since June. Before that, he was president of Millennium Cell Inc., a now-defunct hydrogen storage and fuel cell company in Eatontown, NJ. Prior to that, he spent 17 years with battery maker Duracell…..Carol Bailey, an executive and engineer with 25 years experience in new-technologies energy, has joined ...
En route: Peugeot’s plug-in fuel cell hybrid two-seater convertible at speed. Peugeot Citroen Introduces Plug-In Fuel Cell Hybrid Convertible Demonstrator
  LYON, FRANCE – Somewhat unexpectedly, venerable French carmaker PSA Peugeot Citroen unveiled a partially fuel cell powered convertible at a hydrogen exhibit last month here.    The full descriptive is a bit of a mouthful, a “rechargeable fuel cell hybrid demonstrator,” based on the company’s Peugeot 307 convertible. The relatively small PEM fuel cell serves essentially as a range extender, giving the car a range of 500 km (312 miles) which the company says is close to the capability of current models with internal combustion engines.  ...
Plug-In Hybrids Will Be Costly for Years, Won’t Help Cut Oil Use, NRC Study Says
  WASHINGTON, DC – A new research report by the National Research Council says the cost of plug-in hybrid electric cars are probably not going to decline “drastically” in the near future, and it will take several decades before upfront outlays decline sufficiently to be offset by lifetime fuel savings.   One of its eye-opening findings is that the near-term “probable” incremental cost of lithium-ion batteries to a car manufacturer may be as high as $18,100 for plug-in hybrid cars with an electric-only range of 40 miles (PH-EV40), as ...
H2Gen Innovations Sells H2 Steam Reform Technology to Air Liquide, Closes Down
  ALEXANDRIA, VA - H2Gen Innovations, Inc., the developer of advanced hydrogen generation technologies here, halted operations last month with the sale of its Hydrogen Generation Module (HGM) technology to Air Liquide, the large French industrial gas producer.  H2Gen sold the first half of its technology know-how, the MARS PSA hydrogen purification system, to Chicago Bridge & Iron late last year (H&FCL Nov. 09). Now the HGM technology is being acquired by two Air Liquide affiliates, Air Liquide Process & Construction, Inc., and Air Liquide Industrial U.S. LP, Air ...
The Nemo H2 iuel cell tourist boat in an Amsterdam canal. First Canal Cruise Tourist Boat Designed Specifically for Fuel Cells is Launched
 AMSTERDAM - Cruising Amsterdam’s canals on hydrogen:  The world’s first inland waterways tourist boat specifically designed for zero-emission fuel cell power was launched last month in Amsterdam by the Boat Company Lovers (that’s the name of the owners, guys), one of Amsterdam’s largest canal cruise companies.   Nemo H2 is almost 22 meters long, carries 86 passengers plus a crew of two and is powered by two 30 KW PEM fuel cells mated to a 70 kWh battery that provide the energy for an electric stern thruster and an electric bow thruster. It ...
Fast Forward:
  * Is the Mysterious Bloom Box a Regenerative Solid Oxide Fuel Cell? It’s not absolutely certain, but it sure seems that way. K. R. Sridhar, the CEO and co-founder of secretive Sunnyvale, CA-based Bloom Energy Corp., allowed that it’s a fuel cell and that the process is reversible in a Dec. 7 “Business Week” Tech Pioneers interview,  “Bloom Energy Shifts Power via Fuel Cells.” It’s apparently the only interview with a Bloom Energy executive to appear in a long, long time – if ever – although there have been several reports ...
Events
            The “New Green Economy - 10th National Conference on Science, Policy and the Environment” conference will be held at the Ronald Reagan Building Jan. 20-22 in Washington DC. Details: National Council for Science and the Environment, 202/530-5810;  www.ncseonline.org/conference/greeneconomy/               The EUEC 2010 Energy & Environment Conference & Expo will be held Feb. 1-3 at the Phoenix Convention Center, Phoenix, AZ. Details: ...
“Viking Lady” in Waiting: The 5,900 ton offshore supply ship with auxiliary molten carbonate fuel cell power is docked in Copenhagen during last month’s Climate Summit COP-15: Many H2, Fuel Cell Cars at Climate Summit, Little Evidence of Political Impact
   COPENHAGEN – Gov. Schwarzenegger talked up hydrogen, international hydrogen groups released a policy  statement at the Climate Summit, hydrogen and fuel cell cars roamed the streets, and there was even a big ocean-going fuel cell ship docked in port.    But in the end there was a real question whether hydrogen and fuel cell technology made much of an  impression as an important means of coming to grips with climate issues on negotiators and the hordes of summiteers that had descended for two December weeks on this greenest of European ...
The Fiat minivan powered by Serenergy’s methanol fuel cell. COP-15: Danish-U.S. Company Designs Fiat-Based Methanol Fuel Cell Minivan
   COPENHAGEN/NEW YORK – Just ahead of the Copenhagen Climate Summit, a Danish-American company announced it had adapted a Fiat minivan to an innovative high-temperature  air-cooled methanol fuel cell that it says overcomes some of the problems associated with hydrogen  fuel cells.   Metha Energy Solutions, New York, together with Danish fuel cell developer Serenergy, Hobro in northern Denmark, said they had developed a prototype vehicle based on a 9-passenger Fiat van running on a 60/40 mixture of methanol and water. The car was to be demonstrated at the ...
Briefly Noted:
 * $100 Million in New DoE Funding for Advanced Energy R&D:  Just prior to the Copenhagen Climate Summit (p. 1), Energy Secretary Steven Chu last month announced $100 million in second-round Recovery Act funding for transformational energy research projects via DoE’s new Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E). The new solicitation is concentrated on new approaches for biofuels, carbon capture and batteries for long electric range plug-in vehicles. A first round of solicitations last year resulted in awards for 37 projects (No mention of any hydrogen and/or fuel ...