Even though funding from the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) for hydrogen research is like a ping pong ball now days, one thing is for certain: hydrogen and fuel cells are still a growth industry. Whether or not the U. S. government intends to stimulate the hydrogen and fuel cell sectors, this sector will continue to grow according to a new iRAP (Innovative Research and Products) report.
According to Azonano.com which quotes this report, “As noted in the report, more than 3870 organizations are involved in fuel cells, hydrogen energy and related nanotechnology and spent an estimated $8.4 billion in 2008. This market is estimated at $8.8 billion in 2009 and expected to increase to $14 billion by 2014, with a compound average growth rate of 9.6-percent.”
Since the Obama Administration has clearly sided with plug-in and battery electric cars, many have been wondering what the future will hold for hydrogen and fuel cells. According to this study the future for hydrogen is still as bright as the sun itself (made up of mostly hydrogen I might add).
A summary of the iRAP report states that roughly half of the companies in hydrogen and fuel cell development are using nanotechnology as a means towards their end products. This means roughly one half are not related to nanotechnology and include companies working with power electronics, pumps, fans, valves, piping, compressors, and other fuel cell system parts.
According to the summary, the companies engaged in hydrogen and fuel cell technology as a growth industry include, “The organizations are made up of well established corporations, start-up companies, universities, governments at the federal, state and municipal level, cooperative public/private demonstrations, as well as non-profit organizations and laboratories.”
So, the next time someone tells you hydrogen and fuel cells are dead, turn the other cheek, roll your eyes, or do whatever it is you do. Just don’t believe the anti-hype that hydrogen is dead. In fact, it keeps growing stronger day by day and month by month.