A hydrogen fuel cell generator provides clean, sustainable power for a multitude of applications.
Contractors and industrial companies committed to creating more sustainable worksites are seeking to add electric equipment and vehicles to their fleet to lower carbon emissions while getting the job done. But there’s one problem: The power sources used to run the machines or recharge the batteries aren’t always green. Diesel generators used for remote or backup power produce more than their share of emissions and burn a significant amount of fossil fuel. Hydrogen generators are emerging as a more sustainable alternative.
Closing the sustainability loop for jobsite electrification
A hydrogen fuel cell generator uses fuel cells to combine hydrogen fuel and oxygen from the air in an electrochemical process that creates electricity. The only byproduct is water.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, this clean-burning fuel can be produced from various domestic resources. Natural gas is the most common source today, but others include nuclear power, biomass, solar and wind. In a report on the future of hydrogen, the International Energy Agency wrote, “The time is right to tap into hydrogen’s potential to play a key role in a clean, secure and affordable energy future.”
A hydrogen power generator can help close the sustainability loop for jobsite electrification by powering electric equipment in a more sustainable way. In addition to producing zero emissions, it’s more efficient than fossil fuel generators since hydrogen creates more energy per pound of fuel than gas or diesel. It’s also much quieter, reducing noise pollution. Hydrogen generators can be paired with a battery energy storage system to slash fuel use.
An onboard intelligent HMI system lets users check fuel status and receive low-fuel alerts to avoid unexpected downtime due to lack of fuel.
Hydrogen fuel cell generator applications
Compact and durable, hydrogen fuel cell generators can be relied on to provide instant power in any number of locations. Like other generators, they can be linked together to produce more power.
Generators keep many jobsites running, and traditional diesel generators are some of the worst offenders when it comes to jobsite emissions. By choosing hydrogen fuel cell generators to power their electrical equipment, contractors can get closer to meeting their sustainability goals and those of their customers.
A gas or diesel generator should never be used in an enclosed space because of the emissions they produce. With a hydrogen power generator, there are no noxious emissions that could foul the air and put workers at risk.
Islands and other isolated sites
In places where there’s no grid or an unreliable grid, a hydrogen generator offers clean, reliable primary power or backup power.
At indoor and outdoor venues, hydrogen fuel cell generators can be used to power lights, sound equipment and all the other equipment necessary to providing a good audience or spectator experience, without significant noise or fumes that could detract from enjoyment of the event.
Making the switch
Currently, the cost of hydrogen is high — several times higher than the cost of diesel. In addition, the hydrogen fuel distribution network is limited to major cities. As that network grows, the price of hydrogen fuel will likely come down.
For projects in areas where hydrogen fuel is readily available, renting a hydrogen fuel cell generator can be a smart way to test out the equipment, especially on projects with strict sustainability requirements or jobsites with noise restrictions.