World's First Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Station Opens in California

August 24, 2011

The world's first tri-generation fuel cell and hydrogen energy station, supported by DOE, was commissioned on August 16. It is called "tri-generation" because it is a combined heat, hydrogen, and power system that co-produces hydrogen in addition to electricity and heat. The system, at the Orange County Sanitation District's wastewater treatment plant in Fountain Valley, California, will provide transportation fuel to the public and electric power to an industrial facility.

The hydrogen produced by the system is sent to a hydrogen fueling station that will be open to the public and can support between 25 and 50 fuel cell electric vehicle fill-ups per day. The fuel cell also produces approximately 250 kilowatts of power for use by the wastewater treatment plant. This on-site approach to hydrogen production advances hydrogen infrastructure technologies that will accelerate the use of this renewable fuel. Also supporting the project was a partnership of the California Air Resources Board, the Orange County Sanitation District, and private industry. See the DOE press release and DOE's Fuel Cells Technologies Program website.