April 2006

Trulite wins hydrogen tech contract for Navy

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Boroscience and Sequentus Announce Partnership at Fuel Cell Seminar

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SCRA selected to implement U.S. Department of Energy H-Prize

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Aiken: Home of Hydrogen Fuel
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SRNL team to lead center for advancing hydrogen vehicles
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MHS Robotics Team to study hydrogen fuel
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October 31, 2008
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Trulite wins hydrogen tech contract for Navy

Trulite — the Houston-based company that will produce hydrogen fuel cell batteries at a business incubator on Midlands Technical College’s Northeast campus — has received a contract to produce hydrogen generators for the U.S. Navy. The $531,000 contract is for the company to develop a generator that can produce 500 watts of power for military applications. Trulite will work with BoroScience International, a Columbia-based company that produces boron-based compounds used in fuel cell devices.

October 29, 2008
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BoroScience and Sequentus Announce Partnership at Fuel Cell Seminar

Alliance to accelerate introduction and product delivery capabilities for boron-based products

PHOENIX, Ariz., October 28, 2008 — BoroScience International Inc., a leader in boron chemistry, announced at Fuel Cell Seminar 2008 today its partnership with Sequentus in the development and marketing of  its latest offering, AB-1000, a boron-based specialty chemical for the hydrogen fuel cell industry. BoroScience and the AB-1000 product line will be featured by Sequentus in the South Carolina Pavilion at Fuel Cell Seminar and Expo, October 28–30, during regular exhibition hours.

Sequentus is our channel marketing partner for AB-1000, an ammonia-borane compound of hydrogen fuel cell quality of up to 99 percent purity," said BoroScience CEO Dr. Bernard F. Spielvogel.  "The lightweight crystalline substance is 19.5% hydrogen by weight and an ideal storage material for hydrogen generation under a wide range of temperature and operating conditions."

BoroScience, a University of South Carolina Columbia Incubator company, is developing novel chemical compounds and high-yield, low-cost synthesis pathways for products based on the element, boron.

"Sequentus is working with us to target new customers and assisting our product development, marketing, information management and customer service teams to support our growing business," Spielvogel said.

The partnership will accelerate market introduction and product delivery capabilities. Sequentus is supporting BoroScience with business development and operations staff at the University of South Carolina Columbia Incubator.

"Our objective is to help BoroScience increase the innovation pipeline of novel boron-based technologies, while focusing on specific product development and quality needs of the hydrogen fuel industry," said Robert M. O'Brien, Sequentus executive vice president.  "We look forward to introducing BoroScience to the hydrogen fuel cell industry and providing technical support for customers seeking to utilize AB-1000 in their fuel cell products."

About BoroScience
BoroScience is a leader in boron chemistry, providing optimally suited boron compounds and the design of high-yield, low-cost synthesis pathways for boron-based technologies. The company offers consulting services and custom synthesis of boron compounds in adequate quantities for small-scale pilot or proof of principal studies as well as large scale applications.   The company's commercial product offerings include ammonia-borane, borazine and polyborazylene, which are supporting advances in the development of hydrogen fuel cells, electronics, semiconductors, and advanced materials.   For more information, visit www.boroscience.com

About Sequentus
Sequentus helps its clients focus their ideas and channel their energies to make world-changing innovations come alive. It assists both entrepreneurs and established companies with new product development and strategic business growth.  Sequentus provides strategic planning, business development and operational support services for technology companies in the fields of computing, communications, energy, environmental engineering, material science and specialty chemicals. For more information, visit www.sequentus.com.

October 21, 2008
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SCRA selected to implement U.S. Department of Energy H-Prize

Administration Team comprised of National Hydrogen Association Hydrogen Education Foundation (HEF), Technology Transition Corporation (TTC) and SCRA

CHARLESTON, SC - SCRA, a global leader in applied research and commercialization, has been selected as an administrator of the H-Prize, a US Department of Energy (DOE) Hydrogen Program initiative that competitively awards cash prizes to advance the research, development, demonstration and commercial applications of hydrogen energy technologies.

Section 654 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 authorized the “ H-Prize” competition. In the Act, the Secretary of Energy was directed to implement a competition that awards cash prizes to innovators who surmount critical barriers while helping to create a widespread hydrogen economy. The Act would provide up to four $1 million prizes biennially for the most significant breakthroughs in hydrogen storage, production, utilization and distribution.

SCRA’s contribution to the team’s application process focused on the company’s proven ability to manage and execute hydrogen and fuel cell programs, including the Greater Columbia Fuel Cell Challenge, and in view of the proven expertise of SCRA’s affiliate, SC Launch! in raising private funds to support knowledge economy initiatives within South Carolina. The HEF/TTC/SCRA team was selected competitively in September, 2008.

The legislation requires that a private, not-for-profit entity administer the H Prize program. The DOE issued a solicitation in April, 2008 for organizations interested in this program. SCRA joined a team led by HEF and partnered with TTC. The administration duties include, in conjunction with the Secretary of Energy: 

Developing criteria for selecting prize winners;
Determining the appropriate amount and funding sources for each prize to be awarded;
Providing advice and consultation on the selection of judges;
Raising funds from private entities and individuals to pay for administrative costs and to contribute to cash prizes, including funds provided in exchange for the right to name a prize awarded
Promotion the prize competitions and their results.

SCRA has provided funding and support for 83 new knowledge-based start-ups in South Carolina since inception of its SC Launch program in April, 2006. According to a recent survey by The University of South Carolina Moore School of Business, jobs facilitated by SCRA and SC Launch! provided per capita annual wages between $55,000 and $77,000 in 2007 in South Carolina.  

October 20, 2008
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Aiken:Home of Hydrogen Fuel

If hydrogen is to become a practical replacement for gasoline to power the nation's vehicles, it will probably happen in South Carolina.

Earlier this decade the Department of Energy named the Aiken County-based Savannah River National Laboratory as one of 12 national labs to develop alternative fuels.

The SRNL is focusing on hydrogen fuel and currently has the nation's largest pool of hydrogen scientists and engineers, many of whom work at the nearby Center for Hydrogen Research.

The national lab and hydrogen center are two major components in a statewide "dream team" initiative that includes the University of South Carolina's national fuel cell center, Clemson University's International Center for Automotive Research and the James E. Clyburn transportation center at South Carolina State University.

The combination of government, private industry and universities working together prompted formation of the state's broader Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Alliance that further boosts South Carolina as a research and business leader.

It's ironic a state that has been branded as a sort of backwater in terms of scientific research and economic development might turn out to be where hydrogen storage systems will be developed that could power cars to travel 300 miles or more without a "fill-up." What a bonanza that would be, especially for the Aiken area.

Well, that possibility got another big boost recently when SRNL was chosen to head up a consortium of universities and corporations to develop hydrogen vehicles that lessen dependence on gasoline.

It's been christened the Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence and will be based at the Aiken County lab as a "virtual center" that draws on 10 partners from around the nation to collaborate on advance hydrogen research. The center will receive about $6 million from DOE next year to develop and test scale model prototype vehicles.

The combined knowledge of the lab's scientists and experts from the nine other partner groups, predicts lab director Dr. Sam Bhattacharyya, will lead to reasonably priced hydrogen-fueled cars that will reduce or eliminate the need for gasoline.

Is that too good to be true? Maybe, but not if the best minds in hydrogen fuel research have anything to say about it. And what could be more exciting than that the Aiken area would be the hub for this hydrogen-powered miracle.

October 9, 2008
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SRNL to lead center for advancing hydrogen vehicles

AIKEN S.C The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has selected a team led by DOE’s Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) as its new Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence. The Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence is a virtual center made up of 10 partners at various locations around the country, and is anticipated to run for approximately five years.  The Center supports the President’s Advanced Energy Initiative to reduce our Nation’s dependence on foreign energy sources by changing the way we power our cars, homes, and businesses.

DOE’s Hydrogen, Fuel Cells and Infrastructure Technologies Program, within the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, sought applications earlier this year to fund one multi-disciplinary Center of Excellence team.  The Center will address the significant engineering challenges associated with developing low-pressure, materials-based hydrogen storage systems that will enable fuel cell vehicles to meet customer expectations for driving range, performance and cost. These projects will be incorporated into the DOE's National Hydrogen Storage Project, which currently focuses on hydrogen storage materials development.

Dr. Sam Bhattacharyya, director of SRNL, said that the Laboratory’s selection to lead the Center of Excellence is testament to SRNL’s long-standing expertise in hydrogen storage engineering projects. 

“Over a decade ago, we led a team that put a hydrogen-powered bus on the streets,” said Dr. Bhattacharyya.  “And for decades before that, we have built up core competencies in this area by developing practical tritium storage systems that support the nation’s defense.  The knowledge and pragmatic creativity of SRNL’s hydrogen research staff, combined with the unique skills of our partners in this Center, will help bring about the day when we have hydrogen fueled cars that can travel as far and perform as well as today’s vehicles, and reduce or eliminate the need for imported gasoline.”

The Center will research and develop onboard vehicular hydrogen storage systems and components that will allow for a driving range of greater than 300 miles while meeting, safety, cost and performance requirements.  This effort will include development of engineering, design, and system models that address on-board subsystems.  The Center will also design, construct, test and evaluate sub-scale prototypes based on various hydrogen storage materials, subject to progress and go/no-go decisions.

DOE expects to provide up to $6 million in fiscal year 2009 for these projects, subject to negotiation of cost-shared awards and availability of funds.

SRNL is the lead organization of a world-class team, consisting of nine other partners from universities, industry and federal laboratories.  The partners bring to the Center extensive experience in metal, chemical, and sorbent hydrogen storage materials, and supporting systems engineering expertise.  These other team members include:

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (Richland, Washington)
United Technologies Research Center (East Hartford, Connecticut)
Los Alamos National Laboratory (Los Alamos, New Mexico)
NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (Pasadena, California)
DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (Golden, Colorado)
General Motors Corporation (Warren, Michigan)
Ford Motor Company (Dearborn, Michigan)
Oregon State University (Corvallis, Oregon)
Lincoln Composites Inc. (Lincoln, Nebraska) 

The Director of the Center will be SRNL’s Dr. Don L. Anton, who led development of a prototype sodium aluminum hydride-based hydrogen storage system.  Dr. Ted Motyka, also of SRNL, who has designed and developed metal hydride hydrogen storage systems for over 25 years, will be the assistant director.

SRNL is DOE’s applied research and development laboratory at the Savannah River Site (SRS).  SRNL puts science to work to support DOE and the nation in the areas of national and homeland security, energy security and environmental management.  The management and operating contractor for SRS and SRNL is Savannah River Nuclear Solutions, LLC.

More information about DOE’s Hydrogen Program and the National Hydrogen Storage Project is available at www.eere.gov and for more information please visit http://www.energy.gov/media/Hydrogen_Tour_Fact_Sheet.pdf 3, 2008

October 3, 2008
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MHS Robotics Team to study hydrogen fuel

The Mauldin High Robotics Team is taking on an extracurricular activity.

The team -- one of 50 in the nation and only four in South Carolina -- was chosen to participate in a Green Machine competition to retrofit a robotic vehicle engine with a hydrogen fuel cell.

Nancy Zende, the Mauldin High team adviser, said the team's acceptance into the competition is "a testimony to what we've been able to do in the past and to our willingness to take on additional challenges."

The team has also taken on additional members, she said, almost doubling from last year to this year.

The 40-plus team members also have more adult volunteers and business community mentors because of the project, Zende said.

The project, which began in September and will culminate in May during a competition in Cleveland, hinges on the team's ability to master hydrogen safety and polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell construction, application and maintenance concepts.

Basically, the team will retrofit one of its battery-operated robots to run on a hydrogen cell, she said.

Most of the work now is research, but game design and construction phases are coming.

In January, the team will launch a six-week build period for its annual competition season.

Team members have an "amazing enthusiasm" for the project, she said.

As well as preparing for the actual competition, the team is focusing on how and how soon the technology can be accessed and used by the individual, particularly in commuter situations, she said.

"There may come a day within the lifetime of these students when they see hydrogen fuel cells as the main means of powering automobiles," Zende said.

She added she has always viewed the Robotics Team as a means of preparing the students for jobs that don't exist yet, and that this project emphasizes that opportunity.

This is a "significant opportunity to get in on the ground-floor level on what may turn out to be an important industry in this state," Zende said.

"South Carolina is positioning itself to be a leader in the hydrogen fuel cell (industry)."

The Mauldin Robotics team will display one of its robots Oct. 11 at the Roper Mountain Science Center.

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