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DOE to award $33M to advance hydrogen and fuel cell R&D and the H2@Scale vision

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced $33 million in funding to support innovative hydrogen and fuel cell research & development (R&D), infrastructure supply chain development and validation, and cost analysis activities. (DE-FOA-0002446) This funding opportunity announcement (FOA) builds upon existing efforts funded by DOE’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies Office to reduce cost, improve performance, and strengthen a domestic supply chain for hydrogen and fuel cell technologies and applications.

Activities that result from this FOA will support the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE’s) H2@Scale vision and leverage capabilities at DOE National Labs through close collaboration with the Million Mile Fuel Cell Truck (M2FCT) and H2NEW consortia.

  • M2FCT includes Los Alamos and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories as co-leads, and focuses on fuel cell durability, performance, and cost to better position fuel cell trucks as a viable option in the long-haul trucking market.

  • H2NEW includes National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Idaho National Laboratory as co-leads, and focuses on R&D to enable affordable, durable and efficient large-scale electrolyzers, which produce hydrogen from electricity and water (at both high and low temperatures).

FOA topics include R&D in:

  1. Fuel cells for heavy-duty trucks in coordination with the M2FCT consortium. This topic includes two focus areas to reduce the cost and enhance the durability and performance of Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEM) fuel cell stacks for heavy-duty applications. Efforts in both areas are to be coordinated with the Million Mile Fuel Cell Truck consortium.

    The first research area supports development of bipolar plates with a focus on innovative, low-cost materials with high corrosion resistance and minimal degradation. The second research area is focused on the development of air management components and subsystems for improved reliability and lower overall heavy duty fuel cell system costs.

  2. Efficient and innovative hydrogen production. This topic includes two focus areas aimed at developing sustainable generation technologies to enable low-cost production of clean hydrogen at large scale. The first area, carried out in collaboration with DOE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO), focuses on increasing the production volume of advanced components, stacks, sub-systems, and systems for multi-MW-scale high-temperature electrolyzers to lower hydrogen production costs. This would be coordinated with the H2NEW consortium.

    The second focus area supports technology development which enables low cost hydrogen production via waste and biomass conversion. Research approaches in this area include microbial conversion technologies viable at large or distributed/community scales, with development of novel systems to bring down cost, improve yield, and enable scale-up.

  3. High-flow Fueling Applications. This topic includes two focus areas for development of novel hydrogen fueling technologies and processes that can increase hydrogen dispensing rates to facilitate rapid fueling of heavy-duty vehicles. The first topic area focuses on low-cost, reliable, domestically supplied hydrogen fueling station components to enable high-flow hydrogen fueling of heavy-duty trucks.

    The second focus area supports R&D necessary to develop a high-flow gaseous fueling model and ultimately a standard protocol which can achieve targeted fill rates.

  4. Analysis. This topic includes three focus areas for the development of a comprehensive set of cost analyses involving all aspects of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies. Projects would define the current state-of-the-art in key areas, develop and refine system configurations and designs, provide guidance on R&D gaps, and help to direct future R&D priorities in fuel cell, hydrogen production, and hydrogen storage technologies.

The application process will include two phases: a concept paper and a full application. Concept papers are due on 15 January 2021, and full applications are due on 8 March 2021.


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