what is the overview of hydrogen associations, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), and the current landscape?
Please see below for information regarding national hydrogen associations in the United States.
- Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) – “FCHEA is the leading industry association in the United States representing more than ninety leading organizations advancing production, distribution, and use of innovative, clean, safe, and reliable hydrogen energy. FCHEA is also focused on educating the public and key opinion and policy leaders on the economic and environmental benefits of fuel cell and hydrogen technologies.”
- FCHEA’s Transportation page provides a general overview of commercially available FCEV models including light- to heavy-duty vehicles, off-road material handling vehicles, aviation, rail, and marine transportation.
- Hydrogen Fuel Cell Partnership (HFCP) – The HFCP is a national organization aimed at expanding the market for FCEVs powered by hydrogen. HFCP believes that educating the public about the benefits of electrification of transportation related to hydrogen and fuel cell technology and the accelerated development of such technologies is a critical step to addressing current energy, economic, and environmental challenges.
- The HFCP Station Map provides daily the operational status for California hydrogen fueling stations.
- The HFCP resource library is a hub for the latest hydrogen transportation news and reports.
FCEV OEMs, Availability, and Demand
As consumer and fleet interest grows, major OEMs have begun actively developing and producing FCEVs, although they are currently only available in select markets with available hydrogen fueling infrastructure such as California. Please refer to the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) Vehicles Search Tool for information on commercially available hydrogen FCEVs. You may search by vehicle type (e.g., light-duty vehicles) and by fuel (e.g., hydrogen fuel cell) to view a list of models and OEMs. Please see below for a list of current OEMs and commercially available vehicle class models and check back for updates.
- Toyota – Mirai (Sedan)
- Hyundai – Nexo (SUV)
- Honda – Clarity (SUV)
Medium Duty and Heavy Duty (HD)
In addition, General Motors, Mercedes/Daimler, Ford, and BMW have all committed to putting FCEVs on the road in the near future. Manufacturers are also tapping into the potential for FCEVs in medium- and HD applications, where hydrogen’s high energy density and fast-fueling capability show promise. FCEVs are currently available for fleet applications including transit buses, shuttle buses, and street sweepers. Some manufacturers have also begun developing Class 8 trucks powered by hydrogen, providing another emerging market for hydrogen fuel cells.
Recently, retail and logistics providers like Amazon and Walmart have committed to adopting FCEVs for transportation needs, from forklifts in warehouses to long-haul trucking. Transit agencies across the country are also committing to purchasing hydrogen transit buses, including Pennsylvania’s SEPTA and California’s Gold Coast Transit District.
State of the Market
For information on the international hydrogen market, you may refer to the International Energy Agency’s Global Hydrogen Review 2022, Transport, PDF page 39. Regarding transportation, this report states that the hydrogen demand for road transport, especially as HD trucks are deployed, has increased by 60% from 2021. The number of HD FCEVs and commercial vehicles (e.g., vans, trucks) have also increased significantly. Per the graph on PDF page 42, FCEVs Stock by Segment and Region, the United States is one of the leaders of FCEV deployment.
For information on the domestic hydrogen market, please refer to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Hydrogen Program Update: 2022 AMR Plenary Session presentation for a snapshot of hydrogen production and FCEVs in the United States (slide 5), and DOE’s national hydrogen strategy. Currently, hydrogen is an essential feedstock in established industries, such as the petrochemical sector. DOE has identified hydrogen as a fuel that can be utilized in hard to decarbonize sectors such as HD transport and energy storage.
For more information on fuel cell technologies and market status, please refer to DOE’s latest report, the 2019 Fuel Cell Technologies Market Report. Further, you may refer to FCHEA’s Road Map to a US Hydrogen Economy for the industry’s take on how the hydrogen market can expand in the United States. FCHEA developed this report with input from 20 hydrogen related companies and organizations, including fuel producers, OEMs, and fueling station developers.
Production and Distribution
Most hydrogen used in the United States is produced at or close to where it is used—typically at large industrial sites. Although hydrogen infrastructure is commercially available, wide-scale growth of hydrogen demand as a transportation fuel will require advancements of delivery technologies to address key challenges including reducing cost, increasing energy efficiency, maintaining hydrogen purity, and minimizing leakage. Hydrogen contains less energy per unit volume than all other fuels; because of this, transporting, storing, and delivering hydrogen to point of end-use is more expensive on a per gallon equivalent basis. Further, delivery infrastructure needs and resources will vary by region, hydrogen market, and demand growth. However, because hydrogen can be produced from a diverse array of resources, regional hydrogen production can maximize local resources and minimize distribution challenges.
Please refer to the following resources for information on hydrogen production and distribution:
DOE established H2@Scale to advance affordable hydrogen production, transport, storage, and utilization to decarbonize the U.S. economy. This initiative includes DOE funded projects and national laboratory-industry co-funded activities to accelerate early-stage research, development, and demonstration of applicable hydrogen technologies in transport and other hard-to-decarbonize sectors. In addition, the Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs program, H2Hubs, (https://www.energy.gov/oced/regional-clean-hydrogen-hubs) a program funded through BIL, will create networks of hydrogen producers, consumers, and local connective infrastructure to accelerate the use of hydrogen as a clean energy carrier, including as a transportation fuel. H2Hubs includes up to $7 billion to establish 6 to 10 regional clean hydrogen production hubs across the United States.
Please refer to the AFDC Alternative Fueling Station Locator for information on hydrogen fueling station in the United Stated and Canada. As of 2022, there are more than 56 public fueling stations located in California and Hawaii. Most retail hydrogen stations are co-located at existing gasoline stations.
Per the California Energy Commission (CEC) and California Air and Resource Board (CARB) 2021 Annual Assessment of Time and Cost Needed to Attain 100 Hydrogen Refueling Stations in California PDF page 27, hydrogen at public stations is selling for about $12–$16 per kilogram (kg). In addition, CEC and CARB have determined that stations will need to dispense at roughly $8 per kilogram to be on par with gasoline prices, $3.20 per gallon equivalent.
Per the California Air Resource Board (CARB) 2022 Annual Evaluation of FCEV Deployment and Hydrogen Fuel Station Network Development, California is leading the nation by funding the effort to build retail hydrogen fueling stations. With careful planning, the focus has been to add hydrogen fuel at existing gasoline stations covering regions in northern California near San Francisco and southern California near Los Angeles. In addition to continuing the necessary network developments in established markets, there is a significant market opportunity to prioritize development in underserved, disadvantaged communities across California, especially the San Joaquin Valley and the Inland Desert region. Work is also under way to expand hydrogen fueling locations in Hawaii and across the East coast, with other markets expected to develop to encourage consumer demand of FCEVs. In summary, CARB considers these development efforts to give early FCEV adopters confidence so that they can drive normally and have access to hydrogen wherever they go within these regions.
In addition to public stations, there are private stations supporting fleets, with some used for demonstration or research. Mobile hydrogen fuelers, where liquefied or compressed hydrogen and dispensing equipment is stored onboard a trailer, have been deployed to support the expansion of hydrogen infrastructure. As hydrogen fueling station capacity increases, automakers have the opportunity to accelerate FCEV deployment in established and emerging markets.
According to an International Council on Clean Transportation report, Developing Hydrogen Fueling Infrastructure for Fuel Cell Vehicles: A Status Update PDF page 17, initial hydrogen stations were built at about $2 million to $3 million per station. Most government and industry consortium estimates suggest that the average cost will drop over time, costing closer to $1 million per station and eventually lower yet. In 2020, DOE estimated the cost to be closer to $1.9 million and dropping (PDF page 2).
The availability of stations providing reasonably priced hydrogen in places where vehicles will be deployed remains a key challenge to the adoption of this technology. To address this, transportation stakeholders have set goals to expand hydrogen fueling station network. In addition, several federal incentives include funding for hydrogen fueling infrastructure development and purchasing FCEVs.