Air Products, NSPE open first hydrogen retail station in Japan

Air Products, NSPE open first hydrogen retail station in Japan

NEWS PORTABLE & MICRO SAFCell, UltraCell get US Army grant for portable propane unit I n California, SAFCell and UltraCell have commenced the desig...

88KB Sizes 44 Downloads 284 Views


SAFCell, UltraCell get US Army grant for portable propane unit


n California, SAFCell and UltraCell have commenced the design and fabrication of a 50 W, propane-fueled power unit that features SAFCell’s solid acid fuel cell stacks in UltraCell’s military portable power system. The partners will produce a man-portable, propane-fueled system for US Army field trials by early 2017. Under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II Enhancement grant, SAFCell and UltraCell will focus on halving the weight and volume of the current lab prototype unit. This first-of-its-kind, ultralight power unit will halve the total battery weight burden on the modern soldier, up to 20 kg (44 lb) for a three-day mission, enabling soldiers to carry more mission-critical equipment and ammunition. The unit will be packaged and tested under realistic conditions at UltraCell, before being sent to the US Army for final field trials. Delivery of field trial units will culminate three years of development between SAFCell and UltraCell, to combine their two technologies into a fuel-flexible, rugged, and portable fuel cell system [FCB, July 2013, p8]. ‘This award enables us to demonstrate the advantage of using our fuel-flexible solid acid fuel cell technology in UltraCell’s ultrarugged, portable power system design,’ says Dr Calum Chisholm, CEO and president of SAFCell. ‘The portability, fuel efficiency, and silence of the final unit will make it ideal not only for military use, but for commercial applications as well.’ UltraCell – a subsidiary of military battery specialist Bren-Tronics – designs and manufactures portable power systems for military and civilian applications using PEM fuel cell technologies. Its system design has been developed to meet demanding military specifications [FCB, March 2015, p7]. SAFCell is working with the US Army, oil & gas companies, and power system manufacturers to commercialise its SAFC systems, which operate at 250°C on commercially available fuels including industrial methanol, ethanol, propane, diesel, and natural gas. Last summer it signed a worldwide licensing agreement with UltraCell to develop and manufacture rugged


Fuel Cells Bulletin

power systems for use in remote areas [FCB, September 2015, p9]. SAFCell, Pasadena, California, USA. Tel: +1 626 795 0029, UltraCell, Livermore, California, USA. Tel: +1 925 455 9400,


Uno-X Hydrogen partners with Praxair on Norwegian stations


n Norway, Uno-X Hydrogen has entered into an agreement with a local affiliate of US-based industrial gases giant Praxair, as a strategic alliance to install 20 hydrogen refueling stations covering all the major cities in Norway by 2020. Uno-X Hydrogen is a new joint venture between NEL ASA and Uno-X Gruppen [FCB, December 2015, p1 and March 2016, p5]. ‘We are proud to announce Praxair as a member of our strategic alliance and investor for the development of a nationwide hydrogen station network in Norway,’ says Jon André Løkke, CEO of NEL. ‘Praxair is a global hydrogen supplier, and we see the Norwegian rollout as a global showcase for the future development of hydrogen networks in other key countries, like the US, Germany, and Japan.’ Following the agreement, Praxair’s Norwegian affiliate will hold 20% of Uno-X Hydrogen, with Uno-X Gruppen and NEL holding 41% and 39%, respectively. The joint venture will build a network of hydrogen refueling stations with hydrogen production, allowing fuel cell electric vehicles to operate in and between cities such as Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim, Stavanger, and Kristiansand, along with corresponding corridor locations. ‘Our joint venture will identify and develop the production infrastructure necessary to support a Norwegian network of refueling stations,’ says Løkke. ‘We believe that working closely with gas and oil companies, like we have done in Denmark and are now doing in Norway, is a recipe that can be successfully replicated around the globe.’ Last autumn NEL took full control of Hyme AS [FCB, December 2015, p8], which provides design and technical solutions for hydrogen refueling stations, alongside its earlier acquisition of H2 Logic in Denmark [June 2015, p8]. NEL recently established NEL

Hydrogen Solutions to provide systems and integration for the global hydrogen industry, and is partnering with Greenstat to develop large- and small-scale ‘green’ hydrogen production facilities in Norway [see page 10]. Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and produces, sells and distributes atmospheric, process and specialty gases, and highperformance surface coatings. In 2014 it signed a long-term hydrogen distribution agreement with Plug Power, pairing its liquid hydrogen supply capability with the latter’s GenFuel hydrogen fueling infrastructure solution [FCB, December 2014, p9]. NEL ASA, Oslo, Norway. Tel: +47 2324 8950, or Uno-X Gruppen: [in Norwegian] Praxair, Hydrogen Supply for Fuel Cells:

Air Products, NSPE open first hydrogen retail station in Japan


apanese energy specialist Nippon Steel & Sumikin Pipeline & Engineering Co Ltd (NSPE) and US-based Air Products have constructed and placed onstream their first retail hydrogen fueling station in Tokyo. JX Nippon Oil & Energy, one of Japan’s largest developers of hydrogen fueling stations, contracted with NSPE to supply the station. Air Products and NSPE signed an agreement in February 2014 to work together on Japan’s developing hydrogen fueling infrastructure market [FCB, March 2014, p8]. Under this exclusive arrangement, the parties are currently constructing another station on the northern island of Hokkaido, which will come onstream in September. Air Products’ SmartFuel hydrogen fueling stations dispense hydrogen at 700 bar according to JPEC (Japan Petroleum Energy Center) S0003, and is also certified under the SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) J2601 fueling protocol. The company has been involved in more than 200 hydrogen fueling projects in the US and 20 countries worldwide, serving cars, trucks, vans, buses, scooters, forklifts, locomotives, aircraft, telecom towers, materials handling equipment, and even submarines. Early last year it signed an alliance agreement with Suzuki Shokan Co Ltd, to collaborate on the design, construction, and operation of hydrogen fueling stations to serve

June 2016

NEWS the materials handling vehicle market in Japan [FCB, March 2015, p7]. NSPE, part of Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation (NSSMC), has been engaged in engineering for energy related plants such as pipelines, natural gas, and liquefied natural gas (LNG). NSSMC constructed hydrogen stations for the 2005 World Exposition in Aichi [FCB, June 2004, p7].

LOHC technology demonstrates its technology leadership in the area of hydrogen storage. South Africa-based Anglo American Platinum is a major investor in both Hydrogenious and UHG [FCB, February 2016, p10]. The investments form part of its commitment to support early stage technologies and innovative industrial applications that use or enable the use of platinum group metals.

Air Products, SmartFuel® Hydrogen Energy:

Hydrogenious Technologies GmbH, Erlangen, Germany. Tel: +49 9131 126400,

Nippon Steel & Sumikin Pipeline & Engineering Co Ltd: [in Japanese]

United Hydrogen Group, Kennesaw, Georgia, USA. Tel: +1 866 942 7763,

JX Nippon Oil & Energy:

Anglo American Platinum:

Hydrogenious, United Hydrogen Group link up to enter US market

SimpleFuel’s H-Prize winning system design unveiled at ACT Expo



erman hydrogen storage startup Hydrogenious Technologies has launched its first commercial hydrogen storage and logistics system, using its innovative Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carrier (LOHC) technology. The company recently signed a deal to supply two LOHC systems to United Hydrogen Group (UHG) in the US, which will increase delivery ranges and reduce UHG’s hydrogen logistics operating costs. Hydrogenious says that the LOHC technology dramatically improves the economic feasibility of transporting hydrogen, especially for long distances. In its first foray in the US market for hydrogen logistics, Hydrogenious has delivered a StorageBOX and a ReleaseBOX system to UHG, a privately held US merchant hydrogen producer based in Kennesaw, Georgia. UHG will uilise the technology to increase its reach and lower its operational costs. The partnership with UHG is an important milestone for Hydrogenious, as is entering the US market, which represents about 50% of the world market for merchant hydrogen. The LOHC technology is expected to play an important role in the construction of a hydrogen fueling station infrastructure, and help to accelerate the rollout of fuel cell electric vehicles. The Hydrogenious system features several new technologies, including a polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) electrolyser that generates hydrogen using solar power, and a Hydrogenious StorageBOX that uses LOHC technology to enable storage without any losses for extended periods of time. Hydrogenious says that this first commercial-scale demonstration of the

June 2016

he system design of the H2 Refuel H-Prize finalist, the SimpleFuel™ consortium, was unveiled at the recent Alternative Clean Transportation Expo 2016 in Long Beach, California. Darryl Pollica of Ivys and Kareem Afzal of PDC Machines unveiled the system, while Prabhu Rao of McPhy Energy North America guided the attendees through the capabilities and design of the system. In February, the Hydrogen Education Foundation selected SimpleFuel to deploy its small-scale, onsite hydrogen generation and fueling system, and prepare it for testing by July [FCB, February 2016, p7]. The compact and cost-competitive system is designed to be easily deployable, requiring standard utility hookups for electricity and water. The refueler will be certified by a thirdparty approvals body, which SimpleFuel expects will be a major advantage from a permitting perspective. SimpleFuel is continuing to construct its system, which will be put online for data collection by the end of the summer. The SimpleFuel product is targeted at fuel cell electric vehicle fueling markets such as residential, small fleets, workplace, and service centres. The solution will also enable fuel cell powered materials handling solutions to address the fueling needs of small distribution centres and retail stores. This design provides the first glimpse of what the operational system will probably look like; the final functioning system will be publically shown later in the summer during the ‘Open House’. At the unveiling, Darryl Pollica explained that commercially available

components like the dispenser featured in this design will be used in the final system. That system, currently under construction, will be tested to determine if it meets the technical and cost criteria to win the $1 million H-Prize, and is expected to be able to provide five fills of 1 kg each per day, at a dispensing pressure of up to 700 bar. In discussions about future plans beyond the H-Prize competition, the team projected that the initial launch of their product line, which would be able to deliver 5–10 fills per day at five minutes per 1 kg fill, will cost $200 000 or less, depending on the rate of hydrogen production, dispensing pressure, and manufacturing volume. H2 Refuel H-Prize Competition: Hydrogen Education Foundation: Ivys Energy Solutions, Waltham, Massachusetts, USA. Tel: +1 781 812 6772, McPhy Energy North America, Newton, Massachusetts, USA. Tel: +1 617 899 1980, PDC Machines Inc, Warminster, Pennsylvania, USA. Tel: +1 215 443 9442,

London opens its first HyFIVE hydrogen fueling station, at NPL


he first public access hydrogen refueling station in London has been inaugurated at the National Physical Laboratory in Teddington. This is the first of three UK stations to be deployed as part of the panEuropean HyFIVE project, funded by the European Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) and the UK government’s Office of Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). The NPL hydrogen station is close to the A316 and A308 trunk roads, and is available for commercial and private fleets operating fuel cell electric vehicles. Delegates at the official opening took part in a ‘ride and drive’ that showcased several FCEVs, including the Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell, Toyota Mirai, and Honda FCX Clarity. The station was opened by transport minister Andrew Jones, and was supported by Hyundai, Toyota, Honda, and Renault’s partner Symbio FCell. Jones has also just announced a £2 million (US$2.8 million) government fund to support the rollout of hydrogen vehicles in public and private sector fleets [see page 2].

Fuel Cells Bulletin