This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

February 10, 2004

Dow Installs a 75-Kilowatt GM Fuel Cell, Earns DOE Kudos

Photo of Dow-GM fuel cell trailer.

The Dow-GM fuel cell installation in Texas.
Credit: Dow Chemical Company

Dow Chemical Company began drawing on a 75-kilowatt fuel cell to help power its Texas Operations site in Freeport, Texas, on February 10th. The fuel cell, manufactured by General Motors Corporation (GM), marks the first concrete step in a Dow-GM fuel cell collaboration first announced in May 2003. Dow produces the hydrogen fuel for the fuel cell as a byproduct of its chemical manufacturing process; currently, Dow either burns the hydrogen in its boilers or sells it to industrial gas companies. Although the new installation is a test that will last four to six months, with more fuel cells to be added this summer, Dow and GM plan to eventually install 35 megawatts of fuel cells. That would meet two percent of the power needs for Dow's Texas Operations site, which is Dow's largest chemical plant. See the Dow press release and the Dow Fuel Cell Program Web site.

Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham was among the dignitaries who flipped the switch on the new fuel cell installation. Secretary Abraham applauded the fuel cell test, which will demonstrate the viability of fuel-cell power generation for chemical manufacturing. "The Dow-GM transaction typifies the type of creative arrangements that will arise from the new hydrogen economy," said Secretary Abraham. See the DOE press release.