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

Fuel Cell Technologies Office

DOE Applauds World's First Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Station in Orange County

August 17, 2011

The U.S. Department of Energy on August 16 issued the following statement in support of the commissioning of the world's first tri-generation fuel cell and hydrogen energy station to provide transportation fuel to the public and electric power to an industrial facility, located at the Orange County Sanitation District's wastewater treatment plant in Fountain Valley, California. The fuel cell commissioned on August 16 is a combined heat, hydrogen, and power system that co-produces hydrogen in addition to electricity and heat, making it a tri-generation system. 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 kW 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.

"Innovations like this demonstrate how American ingenuity and targeted investment can accelerate breakthroughs in the hydrogen and fuel cell industry while driving the clean energy economy forward," said DOE's Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Energy Steve Chalk. "By providing the added value of electricity and heat, this approach provides a significant step in overcoming economic challenges with hydrogen refueling infrastructure."

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