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California Energy Commission to award up to $29.9M to hydrogen refueling infrastructure projects

The California Energy Commission (CEC) will award up to $29.9 million to projects to develop hydrogen refueling infrastructure in California (PON-13-607).

The solicitation has two goals: 1) to develop infrastructure necessary to dispense hydrogen transportation fuel; and 2) to provide needed Operation and Maintenance (O&M) funding to support hydrogen refueling operations prior to the large—scale roll—out of Fuel Cell Vehicles (FCVs). CEC will provide funding to construct, to upgrade, or to support hydrogen refueling stations that expand the network of publicly accessible hydrogen refueling stations to serve the current population of FCVs and accommodate the planned large—scale roll—out of FCVs beginning in 2015.

All projects funded under this solicitation must support the future deployment of FCVs and hydrogen internal combustion engine vehicles (HICEVs). The CEC expects that projects funded under this solicitation will create an initial foundation of a statewide infrastructure network that will encourage greater FCV adoption among consumers and facilitate other hydrogen fuel providers to enter this emerging market.

The solicitation has five separate funding categories:

  • O&M Support Grants Competition

  • 100% Renewable Hydrogen Refueling Station Competition

  • Mobile Refueler Competition

  • Station Location Area Competition

  • Unassigned Station Competition

O&M Support Grants is a first-come, first-served grant solicitation. Applicants/projects meeting the minimum eligibility criteria for operation and maintenance support grants will be recommended for funding. O&M Support Grants to the minimum technical requirements of the other categories. Basic technical requirements are:

  • Hydrogen quality. Hydrogen dispensed at the station(s) shall meet the requirements in the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) International J2719: 2011, “Hydrogen Fuel Quality for Fuel Cell Vehicles”. The hydrogen refueling stations must undergo and pass the hydrogen purity test to become considered to be operational and tested every 6 months and when the hydrogen lines are potentially exposed to contamination due to maintenance or other activity.

  • Fueling protocols. The station(s)/dispenser(s) are to meet SAE International Technical Information Report (TIR) J2601: 2010, “Fueling Protocols for Light Duty Gaseous Hydrogen Surface” (general requirements and operating conditions for fuel cell vehicles) until which time the SAE International SAE J2601 Standard is published. Thereafter, the station(s)/dispenser(s) shall meet the requirements of the standard.

    Stations are to have communications available for H70 fueling according to the SAE J2799 Standard. Should the SAE International J2601 Standard not be available, the station(s)/dispensers(s) need to be capable of providing SAE TIR J2799: 2007, “70 MPa Compressed Hydrogen Surface Vehicle Fueling Connection Device and Optional Vehicle to Station Communications”.”

    If available, the station(s)/dispenser(s) should use the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) Hydrogen Gas Vehicle (HGV) 4.3 (CSA HGV 4.3: 2012), Test Methods for Hydrogen Fueling Parameter Evaluation and the “related devices” as a test method and equipment specification to confirm that the performance of a station/fuel dispenser is consistent with the provisions in the SAE International Fueling Protocol standard. The use of an equivalent testing method and device is acceptable if the supporting narrative fully describes the method and device.

  • Minimum station daily fueling capacity. Each station shall have a minimum average daily fueling capacity of no less than 100kg. The average daily station capacity (kg/day) shall be the total kg of hydrogen that can be delivered to a 7 kg-capacity fuel cell vehicle according to the SAE J2601, over a 12 hour period. Applicants are strongly encouraged to propose projects that exceed the minimum station daily fueling capacity.

  • Minimum peak fueling capacity. The station(s)/dispenser(s) are to be capable of meeting or exceeding the following peak fueling capacity requirements:

    Three 7-kg T40 fills per hour according to SAE International J2601. The T40 nomenclature is from the proposed, draft SAE International J2601 standard. Should the SAE International standard not be available, the station(s)/dispenser(s) is to be capable of providing three 7-kg Type A for 70 MPa fills per hour, according to Technical Information Report (TIR) SAE J2601: 2010.

    Station(s)/dispenser(s) must provide dual dispenser pressures. The station(s)/dispenser(s) shall also be capable of providing three T20 fills per hour. The T20 nomenclature is included in the proposed SAE International J2601 standard. Should the SAE International standard not be available, the station(s)/dispenser(s) shall be capable of three 7-kg Type B for 35 MPa fills per hour, according to TIR SAE J2601: 2010.

    The station(s)/dispenser(s) requirement for minimum peak fueling capacity is not six fuel cell vehicle fills in one hour. The requirement is for three fills per hour, regardless of the type of fill, T40 or T20. The station(s)/dispenser(s) shall be able to fuel three vehicles in accordance with SAE International J2601 in a single one-hour period, back-to-back, without the vehicle user having to wait for the station to recharge.

    CEC is strongly encouraging applicants to propose projects that exceed the minimum peak fueling capacity requirements; applications exceeding these minimum requirements will score higher.

  • Fire and safety awareness, prioritization, and adherence. To the extent practicable and with consideration of local ordinances, applicants should use as a guideline for hydrogen refueling station design National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 2: Hydrogen Technologies Code.

  • Dual pressure dispenser. Each hydrogen refueling station must be able to dispense fuel at both 700 bar and 350 bar and provide T40 and T20 according to SAE International J2601.

  • Hydrogen dispensing. Hydrogen dispenser performance specifications must satisfy NIST Handbook 44: 2013, unless superseded by California Department of Agriculture (CDFA), Division of Measurement Standards Rulemaking: California Code of Regulations (CCR) 3.39 “Hydrogen Gas-Measuring Devices—Tentative Code”.

  • Station design requirements. Hydrogen refueling stations must be designed to allow the hydrogen refueling station to accept delivery of hydrogen fuel from a mobile refueler or hydrogen tube trailer if on-site hydrogen production goes off-line.

Renewable Hydrogen Requirements. All applicants, with the exception of those competing under the Mobile Refueler Competition, must provide a plan for dispensing at least 33% renewable hydrogen. (Applicants competing under the 100% Renewable Hydrogen Competition must provide a plan for dispensing 100% renewable hydrogen.)

Eligible renewable feedstocks include biomethane or biogas (e.g., biomass, digester gas, landfill gas, sewer gas, or municipal solid waste gas). Other feedstocks may be eligible if the application demonstrates that the proposed feedstock is sustainably produced, reduces greenhouse gas emissions compared to the petroleum baseline, and achieves defined sustainability goals.

Eligible renewable electricity sources include facilities that use fuel cells using renewable fuels; geothermal; small hydroelectric (30 megawatts or less); ocean wave; ocean thermal; tidal current; photovoltaic (PV); solar thermal; wind; biomass digester gas; municipal solid waste conversion (non-combustion thermal process); landfill gas; and Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs).

CEC is holding one Pre-Application Workshop on 6 December.

Comments

Gorr

I won't go to california but i hope they start the same infrastructure here in montreal quebec canada.

HarveyD

California has always been more forward looking and this type of approach is what is required to promote the early use (2014/2015) of FCEVs.

Other 'not so forward looking' States and Provinces will follow. By 2020 or so, they will all have some basic H2 distribution network installed.

Lad

This is a waste of Tax money.

Engineer-Poet

They can't even cover the state with pumps for CNG, which only requires a pipeline connection and a compressor... but they expect to blanket it with stations for a fuel that has to be manufactured from scratch.

I smell another grand fiasco in the making.

Sirkulat

Using hydrogen 'sparingly' for a transportation fuel suggests Plug-in hybrid has more potential. Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are as impotent as all-battery EVs in that they both encourage motorists to mindlessly continue the insanity of driving up to 100 miles daily between suburban housing compounds and bean-counting workplaces. We must drive like chickens with their heads cut off, too much, too far, at too high cost and impact. Corporate America is depending upon all good patriotic citizen-motorists to drive, drive, drive, over the cliff and die, suckers.

HarveyD

Yes, ..... Corporate America (and many other democracies) depend on all good patriotic citizen motorists to eat, eat; talk, talk and drive, drive over the ....... that is very democratic, isn't it?

SJC

Battery supply is an issue for world wide EV production. If you want to go from 100,000 units per year to 10 million in 10 years, that is quite a ramp up.

PHEV and FCV can be made using fewer batteries. 6 kWh instead of 60 can produce more cars with the same amount of cells. If cleaner air and less oil dependence are goals, that could be the way.

Roger Pham

Totally agree, SJC.
Furthermore, battery production uses a lot of energy and producing toxic wastes. The more efficient use of battery in HEV, PHEV, and FCV reduces CO2 emission and reduce environmental pollution to achieve the same purpose. A BEV with 80 kWh pack will hardly use up the cycle life of the battery while the battery will age and lose capacity and will need replacement. A PHEV will use up the battery's cycle life much quicker, before significant loss of capacity due to aging, thereby much more efficient battery utilization.

HarveyD

A BEV with FC range extender may be a good interim solution for the next 10+ years or until such time as extended range affordable BEVs and FCEVs can be mass produced.

Heavy long range vehicles may need FC range extenders to reduce the size of the battery pack required.

Engineer-Poet

A PHEV with ubiquitous fast-charging stations which can dump a couple of kWh into the battery in a 20-minute stop can electrify almost as many miles as a pure BEV, with far fewer cells (and weight).

Some of the new battery chemistries could be real game-changers.  Take the cheapest of the molten-air schemes, the one using iron as the cathode.  It may not be suitable for mobile use, but given how cheap iron is it would make a great buffer battery for fast-charging stations.  Since the grid already goes almost everywhere, the rollout could be much faster than anything involving hydrogen.

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