Developed by Sandia and several industry partners, the fuel-cell mobile light offers a cleaner, quieter alternative to diesel-pow-ered units. As seen here (top center), the system has been used by airport construction personnel at San Francisco International Airport and in other applications. (Photo by Dino Vournas)

Developed by Sandia and several industry partners, the fuel-cell mobile light offers a cleaner, quieter alternative to diesel-pow-ered units. As seen here (top center), the system has been used by airport construction personnel at San Francisco International Airport and in other applications. (Photo by Dino Vournas)

Mobile lighting systems powered by hydrogen (H2) fuel cells are cleaner, quieter, and now have a proven track record in applications such as nighttime construction, sports and entertainment events, and airport operations, making them ready for commercialization and broader use. The DOE Fuel Cell Technologies Office (FCTO), Boeing, Multiquip, Altergy Systems, and other private-sector partners provided the initial funding for the H2 fuel cell mobile lighting tower (H2LT) technology developed at Sandia. During four years of field tests, data was collected on system performance metrics including energy efficiency, and greenhouse gas reduction. The results indicate H2LT proved to be very durable and efficient despite being exposed to extreme heat, humidity, and cold. Better yet, work crews reported low noise levels and emissions while using H2LT.

The H2LT, developed by Sandia and its partners, was deployed in 2011 at the site of the final space shuttle launch and observed by visitors, shuttle astronauts and members of the international media. (Photo by Lennie Klebanoff)

The H2LT, developed by Sandia and its partners, was deployed in 2011 at the site of the final space shuttle launch and observed by visitors, shuttle astronauts and members of the international media. (Photo by Lennie Klebanoff)

“Since San Francisco International Airport and Saunders Electric are now using H2LTs as part of their regular operations, it’s stimulating the demand for H2 in those regions and helping to create markets for its production and sale,” said Sandia project lead Lennie Klebanoff (8367). A key educational component emerged during the project as well, said Klebanoff. “Wherever the H2LT was used or displayed, we engaged with local fire and building safety authorities and first responders, few of whom had prior knowledge of the physical or safety aspects of hydrogen and fuel cell technology,” he said. “After hearing our technology descriptions and seeing the different ways the H2LT was being used, those groups rapidly welcomed the technology as both reliable and safe.”

A paper describing the project, “Fuel cell mobile lighting: A fuel cell market transformation project,” was published in the Aug. 13, 2014 edition of International Journal of Hydrogen Energy.

Read the Sandia news release.

Read the article in the DOE EERE blog.