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Hydrogen Fuel Research Grant Given to Energy Companies in ND

Bismarck, ND – A research project using wind energy to produce hydrogen fuel may soon begin in North Dakota.

A 497-thousand dollar federal grant was awarded to U-N-D, N-D-S-U, Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Stuart Energy Systems Corporation, and Verendrye Electric Power Cooperative. Basin Electric Member Marketing Manager Ron Rebenitsch (REB-en-itch) says they will first do a study to see if the project would work in the state and then after that-the money would go towards materials and equipment Rebenitsch says the grant is a start and a larger project may follow.

("Wind energy is intermittent and we also have transmission issues. This project will address both those issues and that A we will not trying to export the power out of the state, where we have transmission constraints. We are going to use that power locally. And then B it transfers the power into a form that is storable. i.e. hydrogen as a fuel.")

Verendrye Member Service Manager Randy Hauck says the hydrogen would be used in transportation vehicles at the North Dakota Research Center in Minot. Hauck says Verendrye Electric will be delivering wind power from wind turbines-which are owned by Basin Electric and located south of Minot-to a device that will convert the power into hydrogen at the research center in Minot.

("And to that, what the plan is is to dynamically schedule the wind energy to operate this electrolyzer, which produces hydrogen just when the wind is blowing so the thing will go up and down as the wind speed goes up and down.")

The companies will contribute about 125-thousand dollars towards the project.