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

Fuel Cell Technologies Office


Hydrogen Production Projects Awarded DOE Small Business Research and Development Grants

July 26, 2012

As part of President Obama's broad efforts to support American small businesses and help advance cutting-edge clean energy innovations, the Energy Department is awarding new funding to small businesses nationwide, including two hydrogen production projects.

"Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, employing half of all workers in America and creating two out of every three new jobs in the U.S.," said Secretary Chu. "Bringing these innovative technologies to market is just the latest step in the Energy Department's efforts to support the critical role that small businesses are playing in creating jobs for American workers and expanding our country's clean energy economy. These businesses are helping to reduce our dependence on imported oil and protect our air and water, while ensuring that the United States leads in the global clean energy race."

Arbsource of Tempe, Arizona uses biotechnology to generate hydrogen gas during the wastewater treatment process which can then be used as a low-carbon fuel. They expect to cut the high cost of wastewater management for food and beverage processors in half by supplying low-energy high quality wastewater treatment. Food and beverage processors are burdened with huge costs managing wastewater totaling six or seven figures per year just in operations.

Proton OnSite of Wallingford, Connecticut manufactures hydrogen generation systems which can be integrated with renewable energy sources to generate hydrogen fuel while producing minimal carbon footprint. Focused on low-noble metal content catalysts and electrodes for hydrogen production through water electrolysis, this project aims to reduce the cost of this technology through development of improved materials designed to reduce use of expensive raw materials and overall system capital cost.

Read additional information on the Department of Energy's SBIR and STTR programs