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GM, Army Team Up to Push Fuel Cell Development

Partnership could put hydrogen power on highways – and in war zones.

by on Oct.01, 2013

A hydrogen fuel cell prototype undergoing testing as part of a joint GM - Army program.

The U.S. Army and General Motors Co. have teamed up on the development of hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles.

What may seem like an odd couple alliance actually reveals a common need for clean, alternatively powered vehicles that not only can run on public highways but potentially serve at remote military applications where access to petroleum-based fuels might be severely limited.

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Fuel cells have often been referred to as “rechargeable batteries” because they provide a steady flow of current to drive electric motors. In contrast to conventional batteries which require long charging cycles, however, hydrogen tanks can be refueled in a matter of minutes.

“We believe hydrogen fuel cell technology holds tremendous potential to one day help reduce our dependence on petroleum and we are committed to building on our leadership through the continued development,” said Charlie Freese, executive director of GM’s global fuel cell engineering activities.

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GM Fuel Cell Program at Risk

Maker wants more government money - what else?

by on Jul.29, 2009

GM insists it is at the forefront of fuel cell development - but it insists it will have to drop its research work without some federal funding.

GM insists it is at the forefront of fuel cell development - but it claims it will have to drop its research work without some federal funding.

General Motors officials are hinting that their research work on what many experts believe will be the ultimate clean automotive technology could be at risk – unless, that is, the federal government kicks in with yet more money.

Insiders tell TheDetroitBureau.com that GM has already spent over $1 billion to develop its fuel cell technology.  But despite the company’s belief that it has an edge on competitors like Toyota and Daimler AG, it warns it doesn’t have the cash on hand, after its recent bankruptcy, to keep up the necessary pace.

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“The program has not slowed down at all,” Larry Burns, GM’s retiring vice president of research, told USA Today, in a report on the fuel cell program. “The issue is, going forward, do we have sufficient money to operate at that rate?”

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