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Mid-project data from Oak Ridge study suggests hydrogen vehicles could have up to 70% market share by 2050
16 May 2012
|Hydrogen vehicle market penetration under different scenarios. Source: Dr. David Greene. Click to enlarge.|
Hydrogen vehicles (H2V, including H2 ICE, fuel cell and fuel cell plug-in hybrid vehicles) could achieve a market share ranging from 30% to 70% in 2050, according to preliminary results from a study by Dr. David Greene and colleagues at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) presented at the DOE 2012 Hydrogen and Fuel Cells and Vehicle Technologies Programs Annual Merit Review meetings in Washington this week.
The wide swing depends on achieving further technical success with the development of hydrogen vehicle technology resulting in lower costs, Greene said. H2V technology success—which includes a sharp reduction in the fuel cell cost/kW and on-board storage, as well as a public hydrogen infrastructure—results in the H2V market share of around 70%, compared to around 30% with current baseline technology scenarios.
(A scenario with no technology progress and no infrastructure results in essentially zero market share.)
The study project—which is 50% complete—is using ORNL’s Market Acceptance of Advanced Automotive Technologies (MA3T) discrete choice model, with the baseline calibrated to the US Energy Information Administration’s Annual Energy Outlook (AEO) 2011 reference case. The model estimates sales of 40 vehicle technologies, including conventional and hybrid ICE, plug-in hybrids, natural gas vehicles, battery-electric vehicles, and a range of hydrogen vehicles. It analyzes 1,458 consumer segments, including region, area, driver, early adopter, at home and at work charging.
So far, the team has analyzed technology status, energy markets and policies as factors likely to influence the competitiveness of hydrogen vehicles. Study of a fourth critical factor, consumer preference, is to come.
Some key parameters used in the model are:
Fuel cell technology baseline of $60/kW FC system, $10/kWh storage; Fuel cell+ (fuel cell success) of $25/kW, on-board storage $5/kWh by 2050.
Plug-in vehicle baseline of $450/kWh through 2050; Bat+ of $150/kWh by 2050, Bat20yr+ = Bat+ achieved 20 years earlier.
Among the other initial findings of the study are:
Low-cost batteries (Bat+) help all vehicles: H2Vs and PEVs as well as BEVs. The light duty vehicle market is big enough for both fuel cell and battery technologies to succeed.
The key factor in H2V success is fuel cell technology. Battery success expands the market for both H2 and ICE plug-in hybrids.
Given technological success, hydrogen vehicles appear to be competitive under a range of hydrogen prices. (In the excerpt from the study presented at the Review, Dr. Greene noted H2 prices ranging from $2.0/gallon of gasoline equivalent to $4.0; in a separate study presented at the Merit Review, Dr. Brian Bush of NREL computed a long-term (out to 2050) levelized delivered cost of hydrogen of $6/kg.)
H2V market success will vary with the price of oil, but technology advances are more important.
Success for both battery and fuel cell vehicles reduces light-duty vehicle greenhouse gas emissions by 55% in 2050 compared to 2010 before considering low-carbon biofuels and grid de-carbonization.
The subsidies required for hydrogen (fuel+infrastructure) are estimated to be about $30 billion, depending on technology status.
|Initial projection of purchase probability. Source: Dr. David Greene. Click to enlarge.|
The next step for Green and his colleagues is to test sensitivity to consumers’ preferences, complete the experimental design and analyze the results. An initial projection by the MA3T model for 2050, assuming successful development and cost reduction in cell fuel and battery technologies suggests that the fuel cell plug-in hybrid vehicle would have the highest probability of purchase.
The much lower battery cost implicit in that scenario would potentially lower fuel costs, Greene suggested, and save time by reducing trips to the hydrogen fuel station.
AN023: Sensitivity Analysis of H2-Vehicles Market Prospects, Costs and Benefits (Dr. David Greene, DOE 2012 Merit Review). The presentations will be posted in several weeks on www.hydrogen.energy.gov.
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