The first public hydrogen refueling station in California with integrated hydrogen and gasoline refueling is now open, providing drivers in Chevrolet's Project Driveway another location to refuel their Equinox fuel cell vehicles, currently on the roads in Southern California.
DOE learning demoThe lack of hydrogen fuelling facilities has been a cited as a major impediment to faster acceptance of fuel-cell vehicles.
The station is the third Shell Hydrogen vehicle refueling stations in the US as part of the US department of energy's hydrogen vehicle and infrastructure demonstration and validation project (DOE learning demo). Other Shell hydrogen stations already in operation are located in Washington, D.C. and White Plains, NY. GM and Shell Hydrogen are teamed up under the DOE Learning Demo to deploy fuel cell electric vehicles and install hydrogen stations in Southern California, Washington, D.C. and the New York City metropolitan area.
"The hydrogen infrastructure for automobiles is economically viable and do-able," said Larry Burns, PhD, General Motors' vice president of research and development and strategic planning. "It requires a collective will by automakers, energy suppliers, and governments who have the courage to shape our destiny and take infrastructure to the next level. We applaud Shell for their forward-thinking efforts to help advance the hydrogen infrastructure."
The Santa Monica Boulevard Shell station is conveniently located for many Project Driveway customers who want to refuel their Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell electric vehicles on LA's West Side. It is also California's first hydrogen refueling station that is integrated with an existing conventional gasoline station.
"California is leading the way with clean fuels," said Graeme Sweeney, Executive Vice President for Shell Future Fuels and CO2. "FCVs powered by hydrogen, like the Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell vehicles on roads throughout Southern California now, will provide a sustainable transportation choice for the future. We are pleased to be playing our part to help develop a safe and reliable fueling infrastructure for future clean energy vehicles."
Hydrogen produced at the Shell station will be done on-site by the electrolysis of water using 'green electricity' purchased from the Los Angeles City Department of Water and Power. It will then be compressed and stored to provide daily fueling. In addition to the new hydrogen pump, Shell has converted an unused service bay into a visitor center to help educate drivers about the use of hydrogen and fuel cell vehicles.
Project Driveway details
Chevrolet's Project Driveway is putting more than 100 Equinox fuel cell vehicles in the hands of real customers to help Chevrolet and GM understand what it will take to bring larger numbers of fuel cell vehicles to customers around the world. Currently, the program has launched in Los Angeles, New York City and Washington D.C. with further deployments later this year in Europe and Asia.
Project Driveway is well-underway now with vehicles in the hands of five basic constituency groups: "Regular" consumers who have raised their hands via the internet ; media; public policy/leaders; business partners (like Disney, and Virgin Atlantic); and celebrities.
The zero-emissions Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell SUV is powered by GM's fourth-generation fuel cell propulsion system and meets all applicable 2007 US Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. The vehicle includes a range of safety features found on other Chevrolet cars, including driver and front passenger air bags, anti-lock brakes, and GM's OnStar telematics service, which will offer drivers advice on operating the cars as well as information on nearby hydrogen filling stations.
The EPA has certified the hydrogen-powered Equinox Fuel Cell as a zero-emission vehicle (ZEV).
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