Ceramic Industry

DOE Awards Nearly $7 Million to Advance Fuel Cell Research

August 26, 2011

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced nearly $7 million over five years for independent cost analyses that will support research and development efforts for fuel cells and hydrogen storage systems. The four projects-in California, Ohio, and Virginia-will reportedly generate rigorous cost estimates for manufacturing equipment, labor, energy, raw materials, and various components that will help identify ways to drive down production costs of transportation fuel cell systems, stationary fuel cell systems, and hydrogen storage systems. These projects will provide important data that will help the DOE focus future research and development funding on the fuel cell components and manufacturing processes that can deliver the greatest gains in efficiency.

“These projects will help advance our fuel cell and hydrogen storage research efforts and bring down the costs of producing and manufacturing next generation fuel cells,” said Steven Chu, U.S. Energy secretary. “These technologies are part of a broad portfolio that will create new American jobs, reduce carbon pollution, and increase our competitiveness in today’s global clean energy economy.”

The projects will reportedly generate lifecycle cost analyses of existing and conceptual fuel cell systems for transportation and stationary applications. The projects will analyze a range of system sizes, manufacturing volumes, and applications, including transportation, backup power and material handling equipment such as forklifts. Cost analyses are conducted by designing the system and conceptualizing its manufacturing process, selecting manufacturing equipment, determining labor and energy, and obtaining prices for materials and manufacturing equipment.

For more information, visit www.energy.gov.