Columbia Hydrogen Fueling Station Project Officially Launched
COLUMBIA, SC – May 15, 2008 – On behalf of its partners in the University of South Carolina – City of Columbia Fuel Cell Collaborative, SCRA, a global leader in applied research and commercialization, has signed a contract with the Center for Transportation and the Environment to lead a project that will install and commission a hydrogen fueling station in downtown Columbia. An initial project kick-off meeting was conducted today and work will commence immediately, with the goal of having the station operational in advance of the 2009 National Hydrogen Association annual conference, which will be held in Columbia in late March, 2009.
Funding for the first phase of the project, which will design and configure the station, order major pieces of equipment and secure the necessary permits to begin construction, is being provided by proceeds from a federal grant awarded to EngenuitySC and by proceeds from the South Carolina Industry Partnership Fund administered by SCRA. This phase will permit compression, storage and dispensing of high pressure gaseous hydrogen; subsequent phases of the project will provide the capability to generate hydrogen on site.
“This project represents an unambiguous commitment by the political, economic and academic leaders in the Columbia region to growing and developing a hydrogen and fuel cell economy in the Midlands,” said Bill Mahoney, SCRA CEO. “SCRA is pleased to lead investment in this and other projects that fulfill our legislative mandates through the Innovation Centers and Industry Partnership Acts.”
The station’s first “customer” will be the Federal Transit Administration’s National Fuel Cell Bus Program, which will provide a hybrid battery – fuel cell bus for demonstration in Columbia beginning late in 2008. The bus, which is being built in Golden, Colorado, will operate in Columbia for a year as part of a three-site test program.
“Our commitment to creating a hydrogen and fuel cell economy in Columbia is one step closer with the launch of this fueling station. This station and other related projects lay the foundation for making our vision a reality,” said Bob Coble, Mayor of the City of Columbia. “We are proud to join a select group of cities who have embraced the hydrogen economy in the U.S.”
The project team will be led by the Center for Transportation and the Environment, an Atlanta-based organization specializing in public transportation projects. Technical lead for the project will be the Gas Technology Institute, an Illinois-based research, development and training organization focused on delivering technology-based solutions for consumers, industry, and government. Major equipment and components will be supplied by Greenfield Compression, a Texas-based company specializing in compression and storage systems for industrial and natural gases. Local partners on the project team include the University of South Carolina and the Boudreaux Group.
“CTE is proud to be involved in this important project, which brings together an exceptional team of regional expertise and resources and will attract national and international attention to Columbia and South Carolina as a leader in hydrogen and fuel cell technology development,” said Dan Raudebaugh, CTE’s Executive Director.
An official “ground breaking” for the station is anticipated later this summer.
About the USC Columbia Fuel Cell Collaborative
The University of South Carolina – City of Columbia Fuel Cell Collaborative was formed by the University of South Carolina, the City of Columbia, EngenuitySC and the South Carolina Research Authority to position Columbia, SC as a leader in hydrogen fuel cell innovation and technology. Its mission is to attract private sector partners, top fuel cell scientists, entrepreneurs and innovators to the Columbia region
SCRA is a global leader in applied research and commercialization services with offices in Anderson, Charleston, and Columbia. SCRA collaborates to advance technology with industry, government, and research universities like Clemson University, the University of South Carolina and the Medical University of South Carolina. For more information, please visit: www.scra.org
Founded in 1993, CTE is a member-based organization that develops and demonstrates advancements in transportation technologies, vehicles, and fuels that reduce pollution and fossil fuel dependency. In partnership with federal, state, and local stakeholders, CTE has managed a portfolio of more than $100 million in cost-shared research and demonstration projects involving some 450 organizations. The Southern Fuel Cell Coalition, an initiative of CTE, began in 2004 to supplement the individual hydrogen and fuel cell initiatives of organizations throughout the region. For more information about CTE, our members, and our projects, please visit: www.cte.tv