GM and Dow Begin Phase One Fuel Cell Operations

March 18, 2004 by Jeff Shepard

General Motors Corp. (GM, Detroit, MI) and Dow Chemical Co. began the phase one installation operations of a single fuel cell that will convert hydrogen into electricity. Dow and GM intend to prove the viability of hydrogen fuel cells for a large industrial power system. Operation of the first cell will last four to six months with more fuel cells and electrical generating capacity added during the summer months.

The initial GM fuel cell will generate 75 kW of power. This is enough electricity for 50 average homes. Dow and GM plan to ultimately install up to 400 fuel cells to generate 35 MW of electricity. That would be enough power for 25,000 average-sized American homes. While this is a lot of electrical capacity, it represents 2 percent of the total Dow needs at its Texas operations site.