The South Carolina Department of Commerce introduced the South Carolina Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Alliance, a statewide initiative designed to promote the development and use of quality, cost effective and accessible hydrogen, fuel cells and related technologies.
The Alliance, a 501(c)(3) corporation will serve as the primary facilitator on hydrogen initiatives within the state. Its specific goals are:
To develop a governing strategy for hydrogen initiatives and associated economies to enable long-term growth;
To provide education on the state’s available hydrogen resources and facilities;
To initiate and to evaluate potential partnerships and collaborations for research initiatives; and
To support viable hydrogen demonstrations and projects for the state.
We are committed to building on our competitive advantages in hydrogen and fuel cell research and production to grow a viable hydrogen cluster that can create higher paying jobs and help ensure we can compete in a knowledge based economy.—South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford
South Carolina has a number of resources it is looking to apply to a hydrogen effort:
Savannah River National Laboratory has one of the largest concentrations of hydrogen researchers in the United States, with research strengths in thermochemical hydrogen production, hydrogen storage/hydride beds, and hydrogen delivery systems.
Toyota Motor recently put US$2 million into research with Savannah River National Laboratory to develop a lighter-weight and cost-effective hydrogen fuel storage system for future hydrogen-powered automobiles. (Earlier post.)
The Center for Hydrogen Research is a new 60,000 sq.ft. facility in Aiken specifically designed for collaborative hydrogen research, using the expertise of SRNL, universities and industry to develop and market hydrogen storage and related systems.
The University of South Carolina currently performs research in integrated fuel cell development and is recognized as home to the National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center for Fuel Cells.
Clemson University, home to the International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR), is researching advanced materials and thermo-chemical hydrogen production. CU-ICAR will use its expertise in material research and automotive design to integrate hydrogen and fuel cells in automotive applications.
South Carolina State University is home to the Clyburn Transportation Center and conducts research with an emphasis on linking various modes of transportation using advanced technologies and concepts to address future transportation needs and rural community economic development.
Some of the economic allies for hydrogen development in the state include the South Carolina Research Authority, the state-funded Venture Capital Fund, Concurrent Technologies Corporation and Fuel Cell South.