In February 2000, the California Air Resources Board approved regulations to reduce emissions from transit buses in California. Because of this ruling, several transit agencies in the state began developing programs to demonstrate zero-emission buses, specifically fuel cell buses.

DOE is conducting an evaluation of these buses in revenue service. The results will be extremely important in understanding the state of the technology and the work that still needs to be done. This information will also be helpful in estimating what the future technology and costs of operation may be based on the experiences of these operations and expected advances in the systems integration and developments.

Data collected from the bus demonstrations will be used to:

  • Develop and document the procedures for evaluating fuel cell buses
  • Perform baseline performance testing of fuel cell buses and document the results
  • Evaluate the buses' performance, emissions, costs, and operating characteristics
  • Define and document infrastructure and facility modifications required to add hydrogen fueling and bus maintenance to the transit sites.

The evaluation involves three primary sites in California. The transit partners' responsibilities include procurement, operation, and maintenance of the buses; installation, operation, and maintenance of hydrogen fueling infrastructure; modification of facilities to allow for safe maintenance of the buses; and transmission of data to evaluation partners. The three sites are:

NREL is also evaluating fuel cell buses in other areas of the U.S. Current projects include:

Publications related to these evaluations will be posted below as the projects progress.

For more information on these DOE evaluations, contact Leslie Eudy at 303-275-4412.

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