Over a construction period lasting two years, Air Liquide has constructed a new natural gas reformer in Dormagen. The French gases company has invested approximately 100 million Euros in the facility which is situated at the Chempark industrial park near Leverkusen, Germany, with the goal of producing hydrogen
The HyPulsion joint venture has now been owned in full by Plug Power since August 2015. As announced by the American (USA) company on July 27th 2015, it has acquired all of the shares in its former partner Axane, a subsidiary of the gases company Air Liquide. The New York-based manufacturer of fuel cells paid US-$ 11.5 m. for 80 % of the shares. In 2012, Plug Power and Axane joined forces to form HyPulsion, primarily with the goal of kick-starting the market for fuel cell forklift trucks. Andy Marsh, managing director of Plug Power, made the following comments: “We are now moving ahead with optimism to extend our presence in the European materials handling market. […] I am pleased that our collaboration with Air Liquide for the further development of the hydrogen sector in Europe is continuing.”
The political statements are now being trotted out on an almost weekly basis. This should come as no surprise, since more power-to-gas projects are now starting than ever before. We repeatedly hear things like “PtG technology has the potential to lead the energy transition to success.” Such statements were to be heard most recently, for example, at the commissioning of the facility in Ibbenbüren and in Mainz, and also at the initialization of the project in Solothurn, Switzerland.
The Auto Stack Core (Automotive Fuel Cell Stack Cluster Initiative for Europe II) cooperation project is a merger between 14 European auto manufacturers, suppliers, system integrators and research institutes. Working together, their goal is to develop a fuel cell stack (FC stack) for vehicle applications which satisfies the most advanced international aspirations in terms of performance, performance density, lifespan and effectiveness. On the basis of cooperation between these differing participants, the most optimum possible combination of the existing know-how should be achieved and the critical development interfaces coordinated efficiently.
In the good-natured international race to deploy hydrogen fueling stations for fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV), Japan has taken a clear lead, with 74 stations approved to date, a dramatic jump from the 45 stations operating or under construction at the end of 2014. By comparison, California and Germany have about 50 stations in operation or under development.
Seldom before was it evident just how big the gap between theory and practice can get than it was at the 66th International Motor Show (IAA). Indeed, in the run up to the IAA 2015, the show organizers, the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) had said clearly and repeatedly that electric mobility would be a key topic again at this year’s event. In reality, things were very different, however: neither fuel cells nor battery powered vehicles proved to be a major topic at any of the auto manufacturers. Of those present, only Toyota made a clear focus on hybrid vehicles, presenting the new Mirai
It may well be the case that Plug Power has itself triggered the fall in the price of its shares that occurred in recent weeks, as described in detail and substantiated by a report (Seeking Alpha dating from 2.9.2015). In detail: 1. The takeover of HyPulsion, the European joint venture with Air Liquide for US-$ 11.5 m. was settled in shares (6.4 m. units due to the fall in the share price instead of the originally planned 4.8 m. shares), whereby it had already been made clear that the Air Liquide subsidiary, Axane SA, would register these shares and sell them on the stock exchange. Plug would have been better off paying the US-$ 11.5 m.
Looking at the share prices for fuel cell companies that are being traded on the stock exchange right now, one could be forgiven for thinking that a crash had just taken place. It is as if the technical breakthroughs in the further development of the fuel cells had never taken place, and as though the production, storage and use of hydrogen had zero chance of achieving any success. Yet in fact, the opposite is the case. Right now we are at the start of a new mega trend, and in 2015,
Until recently, fuel cells have been of little importance in rail transport. This spring, however, the company CSR Qingdao Sifang Co., Ltd., which is based in eastern China, presented a tram which is driven with hydrogen. The new H2 tram, which features a fuel cell system from Ballard, left the production line in the port city of Qingdao
Numerous European countries are working hard – to a greater or lesser extent – in the field of hydrogen and fuel cell technology. Since 2006, one region has been particularly active: South Tyrol. In September 2009, in Bolzano, Italy, the ground-breaking ceremony was held for the construction of the first production and distribution system for green hydrogen in the country. The site adjacent to the Bolzano South freeway exit is now home to the biggest center for hydrogen in Europe, which is operated by the Institute for Innovative Technologies (IIT) and the Brenner A22 freeway. H2-international interviewed IIT President Walter Huber about the previous, current and future activities in South Tyrol.