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Integrated hydrogen and fuel cell systems will maximize overall system efficiencies, reduce costs, and optimize component development. DOE's Fuel Cell Technologies Office has a number of demonstrations underway to develop, evaluate, and validate the performance of integrated systems such as Power Parks.
The status of DOE's integrated technology validation projects is detailed in the technology validation section of the Annual Progress Report.
Highlights of some of DOE's integrated systems demonstrations now underway are summarized on this page.
Wind/Electrolysis Integrated System Demonstration
To date, only a few studies have investigated the feasibility of producing hydrogen using utility-scale wind turbines, and none of these have considered the possibility of optimizing the wind turbine design for hydrogen production. Variable speed wind turbines rely on power electronics to convert the variable frequency and variable voltage AC electricity produced at the wind turbine generator to DC electricity, which, when connected to the grid must be then converted back to AC electricity at grid frequency (60 Hz). Electrolyzers designed for grid-connected operation also incorporate power electronics to convert AC electricity from the grid to DC power required by the electrolyzer cell stack. Because these power converters represent a significant percentage of the total cost of the wind turbine and electrolyzer, designing single power electronics packages can reduce the overall cost of integrated systems. A project to demonstrate integrated renewable/electrolysis systems is now underway at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
- Advanced Control Design and Field Testing for Wind Turbines at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory: Preprint (2004)
- Optimized Hydrogen and Electricity Generation from Wind (2003)