Wind-generated Electricity to Power Hydrogen Refueling Station

One of the first United States-based hydrogen fueling stations to use electricity from wind power to produce hydrogen from water is under way in North Dakota.

Hydrogenics was awarded a contract by Basin Electric Power Cooperative to supply an electrolyzer-based hydrogen-refueling station for installation in Minot, North Dakota. In addition to the core electrolyzer module, Hydrogenics is supplying compression, storage and dispenser equipment. The hydrogen produced will refuel hydrogen- powered vehicles, demonstrating the link between wind power and vehicle refueling. Recognizing the challenge presented by the intermittency and varying outputs of wind power, an important element of the project is the development of various control schemes by which the electrolyzer can interface with the electrical output of wind turbines to optimize fuel production, particularly during low electricity demand periods. “We believe hydrogen technology can become an important part of our future energy mix, and we are pleased to be playing a role in this ground-breaking project. Through this project we are advancing North Dakota’s reputation for developing renewable energy technologies and contributing to a national objective to reduce reliance on imported fossil fuels,” said Ron Rebenitsch, Basin Electric Manager of Member Marketing. The electrolyzer fueling station to be installed at North Dakota State University’s North Central Research Extension Center in the latter part of 2006 is an integral component of a Department of Energy (DOE)-sponsored Wind Hydrogen project announced by Senator Byron Dorgan’s office in September 2004. The Senator, a national leader in the drive to bring hydrogen and wind energy into mainstream use, has been instrumental in the creation and advancement of this unique multi-phase project. “This is Hydrogenics’ third undertaking to show how hydrogen technologies can add significant value and benefits to investments that people are making today in wind power in many parts of the world,” comments Pierre Rivard, Hydrogenics President and CEO.
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