New funding from DOE could help address hydrogen fuel production challenges

November 22, 2013 0 By Stephen Vagus

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Hydrogen fuel production may make progress thanks to DOE funding

Hydrogen Fuel Funding - DOEThe U.S. Department of Energy has announced some $4 million in new funding that is meant to address critical issues concerning the development of inexpensive hydrogen fuel production technologies and methods. The funding is part of the Obama Administration’s “all of the above” energy policy. This policy has the federal government pursuing several forms of renewable energy, as well as fossil-fuels, and has been the key to opening up funding for innovative energy projects that are taking place throughout the country.

Agency aims to resolve challenges concerning production

The Department of Energy is now looking to fund projects that present an innovative approach to the issue of efficient and inexpensive hydrogen fuel production. Hydrogen production is both an energy intensive and somewhat inefficient process that has been widely criticized. Funding will also be provided to projects that focus on the efficient deployment of hydrogen fuel. Projects that focus on infrastructure are becoming more important as the transportation sector begins to embrace hydrogen fuel more aggressively.

Auto industry pushing for comprehensive infrastructure

The auto industry has put a great deal of focus on hydrogen fuel in recent years. Many of the world’s most prominent automakers have plans to release hydrogen-powered vehicles beginning in 2014 and 2015, but an infrastructure is needed if these vehicles are to ever be considered a success. The U.S. currently lacks a comprehensive infrastructure, as well as cost effective hydrogen fuel production methods. Without addressing the issues concerning hydrogen production, hydrogen fuel may never be able to replace conventional gasoline.

Agency seeks to fund innovative projects

The Department of Energy is interested in funding projects that seek to resolve production challenges through the use of clean technologies. The agency has shown particular interest in projects that seek to mimic photosynthesis — using solar energy to produce hydrogen fuel. Mimicking photosynthesis has become an attractive concept when it comes to fuel cells and renewable energy production in general.