U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

Energy Education & Workforce Development – EERE Postdoctoral Research Awards

Fuel Cell Technologies

Photo of a square-shaped fuel cell, with a tube coming in at the right and positive and negative cable connections near the top.

The Fuel Cell Technologies Program is a comprehensive portfolio of activities that address the full range of barriers facing the development and deployment of hydrogen and fuel cells with the ultimate goals of decreasing our dependence on oil, reducing carbon emissions, and enabling clean, reliable power generation.

Research Topics

FC-301 The Business Case for Fuel Cells:  Quantifying Fuel Cell Power Costs and Benefits


As an industry matures, a better understanding of uncertainties associated with long-term performance, reliability, and safety is developed.  Assessments of risk and cost affect the bankability, profitability, and, consequently, growth of an industry.  With the Fuel Cell Technologies Program's Market Transformation activity, the DOE seeks to accelerate the maturation and growth of the fuel cell  industry.  Critical to this goal is the establishment of accurate assessment methods to be used by financers.  What are the appropriate metrics for quantifying risk associated with fuel cells?  How will improvements in guidelines and standards affect bankability (borrowing rates, insurance premiums)?  Can we rank assessment criteria by their effects on bankability?  For example, can we quantify the value of productivity improvements in using fuel cell versus battery powered specialty vehicles? How does this translate to favorable financing rates?