California Gets Its First Hydrogen Station That Can Actually Sell Fuel

3 years ago by Mark Kane 117

Cal State L.A. Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility. (Photo credit: Hasmik Simon)

Cal State L.A. Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility. (Photo credit: Hasmik Simon)

Toyota Mirai

Toyota Mirai

Hydrogen stations aren’t new, but up to date none of them were aproved to even sell fuel to the public.

The Cal State L.A. Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility is the first one in California to get permission to sell after passing “a rigorous state performance evaluation“.

Sales of hydrogen by the kilogram to drivers of fuel cell vehicles will be available at 350- and 700-bar. Well, it seems that even FCVs don’t have one standard.

Michael Dray, technical operations manager at the fueling facility stated:

“This is a milestone in the commercialization of hydrogen in preparation for the next generation of electric vehicles that will be powered by hydrogen. It’s equivalent to getting the first sticker from the state government to sell gasoline by the gallon.”

Cal State L.A. opened in May 2014 and it is an experimental station that produces hydrogen on site using an electrolyzer. With capacity to produce 60 kg/day and storage of up to 60 kg of hydrogen, Cal State L.A. is far from what we’d consider commercial level.

One kilogram typically allows a vehicle to travel about 50 miles according to the press release, so 3,000 miles a day would be the maximum for cars. If hydrogen tanks store on average 6 kg, then 10 fillings is the daily limit.

We didn’t find information on price yet, but as some sources state, $8/kg would translate to $48 to refuel for 300 miles.

“The hydrogen facility provides key research data on fueling performance and station operations to the U.S. Department of Energy and National Laboratories, as well as to state agencies such as the California Energy Commission and California Air Resources Board.”

University President William A. Covino stated:

“Our hydrogen station is playing a crucial role in helping situate California as a national leader in zero emission vehicles. The station also provides an ideal opportunity for Cal State L.A. students, faculty and staff to collaborate on cutting-edge research and technology initiatives with government agencies that will contribute to improving air quality in Los Angeles and beyond.”

More information on the Cal State L.A. Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility can be found here and here via Green Car Congress.

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117 responses to "California Gets Its First Hydrogen Station That Can Actually Sell Fuel"

  1. Big Solar says:

    My comment = BS

    1. Djoni says:

      As in Big solar 🙂

      1. Big Solar says:

        Exactly

  2. JRMW says:

    Wow. 10 cars per day.
    For the low low cost of $2 million per station.

    Terrible.

    Luckily there are almost no hydrogen cars on the road, because refueling these would be a nightmare if there were more than a smattering.

    First drive out of your way to get to a refilling station (10-20 min? Although in LA it could easily be an hour) then pray it has hydrogen. Sucks to be customer #11.

    If they’re smart they’ll develop an app to tell customers how much hydrogen is left in the station and allow people to reserve a filling time.

    I’m sure we won’t learn the price until Toyota can suck up some more ZEV credits and fool the State to build more of these stations.

    What’s not to love?
    Super expensive to buy.
    Probably more expensive per mile than BEVs and ICE vehicles
    Worst range anxiety ever, effectively you can only drive 150 miles from the filling station
    No infrastructure
    Performance worse than a Prius.

    boondoggle

    Leave H2 for commercial applications until the technology improves

    1. Spider-Dan says:

      I am always shocked that EV advocates are so stringent in their demands for developing technology… if it’s not an EV.

      Yes, this early-generation FCV tech has limitations. So did early EVs. Why the need to bash the technology at every turn?

      1. EV drivers who are good at math get upset when they look at H2 economics and it doesn’t add up.

        People who care about air quality and CO2 emissions get upset when they see at Toyota will get a ZEV “pass” to sell a few million polluting cars in California by building and selling 1,700 Mirai that don’t actually address the CO2 problem. It makes them feel like Toyota is gaming the system.

        1. sven says:

          You’re wrong. CARB requires 1/3 of the Hydrogen produced for vehicles to be from renewable sources. That percentage will go up in the future. Doesn’t that address the CO2 problem?

          Why the misinformation and FUD electric-car-insider.com?

          1. Almost, but not quite Sven. The 30% requirement is only for stations that receive state funding.

            Also, 30% is just that. A 30% solution. I understand that even in California, only about 30% of the grid is sourced from renewable resources. But people also have the opportunity to put solar on their roof, or buy renewable energy from green energy programs.

            I think a lot of EV advocates realize it’s going to be a long time until they have that kind of choice with H2 fuel, if ever.

            1. Spider-Dan says:

              And what, exactly, is the sourcing requirement for EV charging?

              The point of FCVs is not necessarily to effect immediate cleanup of pollution, in exactly the same sense that increasing EV marketshare is still a worthwhile endeavor even in areas that source their grid electricity entirely from coal.

              First, we clean up pollution at the tailpipe by switching over to greener transportation… then we can clean up pollution at the point of energy production.

              1. > First, we clean up pollution at the tailpipe by switching over to greener transportation… then we can clean up pollution at the point of energy production.

                Agree 100%. I don’t think a robust debate about the merits of any approach is a bad think. If we all agreed on every point, it would be a pretty boring conversation.

                Being about to source your own renewable, domestic (literally!) zero emission fuel is a pretty big win for any consumer concerned about their own carbon or emission footprint.

                Purchasing solar and an EV gets you a long way to that goal. Add stationary storage and you’re all the way there.

          2. Sven, I’m curious about what in my posting you find to be misinformation or FUD?

            What exactly will 1,700 Mirai produced between now and the end of 2017 do to move the needle on pollutants and CO2 emissions?

            1. sven says:

              Your post stated “building and selling 1,700 Mirai that don’t actually address the CO2 problem,” when in fact CARB mandates that 1/3 of the hydrogen produced to fuel these cars be from renewable sources. Thus, hydrogen produced from renewable sources addresses the “CO2 problem.”

              Then in a later post you spread more misinformation and FUD by stating: “Almost, but not quite Sven. The 30% requirement is only for stations that receive state funding. Also, 30% is just that. A 30% solution. I understand that even in California, only about 30% of the grid is sourced from renewable resources.”

              First off, 1/3 is equal to 33%, not 30%. I guess you’re not one of those “EV drivers who are good at math” that you mentioned at the beginning of your post. 😉

              Secondly, the 33% renewable-hydrogen standard will apply to all stations in the state once production of hydrogen reaches 3,500 metric tons per year.

              http://www.ucsusa.org/sites/default/files/attach/2014/10/How-Clean-Are-Hydrogen-Fuel-Cells-Fact-Sheet.pdf

              Thirdly, California projects that at least 46% of hydrogen will come from renewable sources by the end of 2015. Like I said in my post, the renewable “percentage will go up in the future.” The source of the 46+% figure is also the link listed above.

              Lastly, in California only 18.77%% of the grid is sourced from renewable resources, not 30% as you stated. More specifically only 1.82% of the grid is sourced from solar, and only 8.55% of the grid is sourced from wind.

              http://energyalmanac.ca.gov/electricity/total_system_power.html

              So that means that the hydrogen to fuel a Mirai will be produced from at least 33% renewable sources in 2014, and an estimated 46+% from renewable sources by 2015. Meanwhile, EVs are charged with grid electricity that is produced from only 18.77% renewable sources. Using your logic and line of reasoning, are EVs just an 18.77% solution, while hydrogen is a 46+% solution?

              Why can’t EVs and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles coexist? People can choose to buy which type of alternative-fuel/emission-free vehicle that best suits their particular situation. Can you at least concede that for people who can’t plug-in to charge either at home or at work, hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles might be a better choice for an emission free vehicle? If you can’t plug in at home or at work, the time it takes to charge/refuel becomes a much more important factor, and the high price (for now) of fueling up with hydrogen is comparable to the price of charging at high-priced paid public chargers.

              1. Big Solar says:

                I see we have a new davemart….bla bla bla

          3. Sivad says:

            Not really. New renewable infrastructure has a CO2 footprint from manufacturing to installation to maintenece and needs to be used efficiently to make the most of it.

            Using renewable power to create hydrogen from water, well to wheels, is only about 30%-50% efficient at best as using that same infrastructure to charge EV batteries directly.

            So to fuel a fleet of the same number of FCVs vs. EVS you would need double or triple the renewable infrastructure built out to accommodate those less efficient FCVs. That in fact does result in 2-3 times CO2 output over the lifecycle of that renewable infrastructure.

            We are attempting to historically change the paradigm of how our transportation system will operate for the following century or two. This is no time to make wasteful less efficient choices in the short term without thinking about which technology will work best long term.

          4. Lensman says:

            sven said:

            “CARB requires 1/3 of the Hydrogen produced for vehicles to be from renewable sources. That percentage will go up in the future.”

            Whatever would cause you to imagine that percentage will go -up-? 95% of commercial hydrogen is made by using up natural gas. Using fossil fuel to make H2, and in the process consuming much more energy and thus making it a lot more expensive while generating a lot more CO2. That’s a pretty foolish trade all around!

            The price for H2 is quoted by proponents at about $6-8 per kg, yet we see prices quoted here at something like $12-14 per kg. Just how many drivers would be willing to pay -twice- as much for H2 that’s still less than half generated from renewable resources?

            Let us imagine a very highly improbable scenario where, somehow, despite being inferior to both gas guzzlers and BEVs, fuel cell cars do “catch on” and people start buying them in large numbers. Creating enough demand that private industry starts building hydrogen fueling stations. Even in that highly improbable scenario, those non-public enterprise stations will be supplying H2 almost entirely from fossil fuel. And -not- from “clean” energy.

            Are there people out there willing to pay $!2-14 for the equivalent of a gallon of gasoline? Sure, there are some. But the percentage of the total population is vanishingly small. There are certainly not enough of them to support building a nationwide infrastructure of H2 filling stations to support them.

            1. sven says:

              “Whatever would cause you to imagine that percentage will go -up-? 95% of commercial hydrogen is made by using up natural gas.”

              California “projects that at least 46 percent
              of hydrogen will come from renewable sources by the end of 2015.” When you create more demand for renewable hydrogen, they will create more supply.

              http://www.ucsusa.org/sites/default/files/attach/2014/10/How-Clean-Are-Hydrogen-Fuel-Cells-Fact-Sheet.pdf

              Things change. Just because something was done a particular way in the past, doesn’t mean it will continue to be done that way in the future.

              http://www.ucsusa.org/sites/default/files/attach/2014/10/How-Clean-Are-Hydrogen-Fuel-Cells-Fact-Sheet.pdf

              1. Lensman says:

                sven said:

                “California ‘projects that at least 46 percent of hydrogen will come from renewable sources by the end of 2015.’

                Seriously? You actually think that wishful thinking will somehow magically come true? That industry will go from 95% commercial hydrogen produced from natural gas, to nearly half from other sources, in the space of a year?

                That is just not gonna happen. Period. As they say: “You are entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts.”

                Here is an actual fact: Hydrogen fuel will always remain much too expensive to generate, store, move, and dispense, to be able to compete with either gasoline/diesel or with the electricity used to power plug-in EVs.

                It’s a fact due to basic physics (thermodynamics) and basic economics (EROI). Not opinion based on wishful thinking.

      2. Lou says:

        Actually, it’s more than many EV advocates would rather that money be spent on developing charging infrastructure, where the money would do a lot more good. I understand your point, that new technology may cost more up front but it has to be done. Problem is that the advantages seem minimal compared to the already existing technology in BEV’s.

        Lou

      3. BravelilToaster says:

        Let me break it down for you, with the cliff notes version:

        Clear Advantages of Battery EVs:

        – Quiet, smooth power.
        – Cheap fuel
        – Outrageously efficient
        – Potentially just as powerful as gas (it’s all about the battery, and we’ve mostly solved that)
        – Instant torque whenever you want it
        – In many places that already exist (ie, with abundant hydroelectricity), they pollute far less.
        – Greening power production automatically means greening everyone’s cars.
        – New fast charging stations are fairly cheap to build.
        – The infrastructure to power the above already exists everywhere.

        Disadvantages of battery EVs:

        – about 30% higher cost than gas powered cars (although that’s changing).
        – It takes a while longer to refuel.
        – Fast charging stations aren’t as ubiquitous as gas stations, if they exist at all.

        Clear Advantages of hydrogen fuel cell cars:

        – Quiet, smooth power
        – Just as fast to refuel as gasoline.

        Disadvantages of hydrogen fuel cell cars:

        – about 100% higher cost than gas powered cars (although that’s changing, it’s still behind the curve).
        – lower fuel efficiency than EVs or gas powered cars.
        – costs of fuel are at least as high as gas.
        – The “cheap” fuel pollutes about as much as burning natural gas in an ICE.
        – The clean fuel doesn’t pollute, but costs at least 3x as much (nobody in the hydrogen business even wants to talk about the numbers, we just know the news isn’t good).
        – There’s presently exactly, um, no infrastructure except in California.
        – The cost of the hydrogen stations pretty much ensures that the infrastructure situation isn’t going to change soon.

        So if your end game is to change an entire infrastructure from gasoline to “something else”, are you going to pick the horse with so many disadvantages and no real advantages except a promise of convenience that’s tremendously inconvenient to find? Nevermind the fact that you can’t justify the increased cost with lower operating expenses? Nevermind the fact that the only benefit of HFCVs over ICEs is some kind of nebulous warm fuzzy feeling about something that doesn’t really exist (namely, some kind of reduction in emissions)?

        Our problem with HFCVs is that they are long on promises and short on delivery.

  3. A bit of blogosphere echo going on here. The general public can not roll up to this station, whip out a credit card, and purchase fuel.

    Fuel is sold to the automakers, who provide it to lessees of cars. (No hydrogen cars are sold yet, just leased). The Mirai will purportedly be the first to be sold.

    What has changed is that the fuel can be sold by the kg, rather than by the tank (even if you didn’t need a whole tank, which most people would not need, sensibly filling up well before empty).

    Fuel price per kg has not been released because of a confidentiality requirement imposed by the automakers.

    1. Taser54 says:

      So just like Tesla

      1. Sivad says:

        No, not really. Tesla is giving access to the superchargers for life. Toyota has said it’s only giving away hydrogen for free for a few years.

        I would be as skeptical of the superchargers as well if Tesla claimed it would be free for awhile but will cost “something” sometime. Sort of like the local corner drug dealer.

      2. Tesla is transparent about the cost to add Supercharger access to a Model S 60. $2,000 at time of purchase, $2,500 as an after-sale software upgrade.

        Toyota and Honda have required that CSULA not disclose the cost of H2 per kg to the public.

        A lot of people think that stinks.

        1. sven says:

          What transparency? Tesla doesn’t disclose what it costs to provide electricity at a Supercharger. What are the ongoing costs to run a Supercharger station? What are the demand charges for drawing all that power at peak hours? What is the monthly rent paid to the property owner to use those parking spaces? What are the maintenance costs?

          The $2,000/$2,500 charges to add Supercharger access might not be enough to cover ongoing expenses at all its Superchargers. Without answers to the above questions, nobody knows what is the cost to Tesla to provide electricity at Superchargers.

          1. SIvad says:

            But again why does the customer care? With Tesla there is a contract with the owner of the vehicle that they get unlimited electricity from said superchargers with no extra fees added at a later time.

            No one is arguing whether Tesla is making a profit off of the initial supercharger fee over what the customer will use in electricity and wear and tear, etc.

            The point is that Tesla has this cost baked into their model. Toyota clearly doesn’t. They aren’t telling their customers that if you purchase a HFCV they will give you free hydrogen for the life of the car. They are only saying you will get free hydrogen for the first couple of years and then who knows how much it will cost to the customer.

        2. BravelilToaster says:

          Yeah, that stinks alright, because nobody is going to tell you how much the fuel costs until there’s enough market penetration. Then, surprise! You just bought an expensive car with expensive fuel with no payback period. Oh, and it’s barely better for the environment than gasoline is.

  4. Assuming, that every car comes there by with a complete empty tank, is the same nonsense, as telling an EV must always be charged from 0 to 100% to continue your last 50 km of travel.

    1. Sivad says:

      Ok, so let’s assume that the average customer needs only 2 kg per stop. That’s still only 30 customers a day. Still terrible.

  5. JakeY says:

    The title is actually wrong. This is not the first CA station that can actually sell fuel. This is the first CA station that can sell fuel *in kg*.

    There’s been plenty of stations in CA that have been selling fuel already (for example here):
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/24/automobiles/fuel-cells-at-center-stage.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  6. Martin T says:

    Now if it was a Super incredibly fast charger – I’d be impressed.

    Hydrogen bowser psssft …..so Yesterday.

    Another attempt by oil companies to keep the situation going.

    I have zero respect for Hydrogen and the companies pushing it.

  7. Lensman says:

    Gosh, a “filling station” which can fill up only 10 cars per day. Even for an “experimental” station, color me -very- unimpressed.

    But then, if I wanted to be snarky, I’d suggest it might have trouble attracting even -that- many customers.

    1. Spider-Dan says:

      In comparison, a L2 charger would be able to fill less than three 300-mile BEVs from “empty” to full each day.

      1. The cost of an L2 EV charge station is about $5-$10k installed. So you could install 250-500 L2 chargers for the same cost as the single H2 refueling station installed in Sacramento a few months ago. That makes EV drivers upset.

        1. Spider-Dan says:

          A 7.2kW L2 EVSE charges about 20miles/hour, or 0.33 miles per minute. An H2 station charges at 100 miles per minute. So given that an H2 station is about 300 times faster than an L2 charger, your numbers don’t seem too far off. Looks to me like we’re talking about choices in technology solutions.

          This is the key difference between BEV and FCV. FCV can compete with ICE at its own game: super fast refueling. BEVs cannot, and must rely on an entirely different mechanism (primarily: cheap, slow charging at home).

          1. Lensman says:

            But the FVC isn’t an improvement in any significant way over the gas guzzler. Generating, storing and dispensing hydrogen fuel is so massively inefficient at storing energy that it actually produces less CO2 to drive a moderately efficient gas guzzler.

            Contrariwise, driving a BEV is not only a lot less expensive per mile, it actually does reduce net CO2 output… even if you don’t have solar panels on the roof of your house.

            The promotion of “fool cell” vehicles is nothing but an elaborate con game by those who want to -pretend- to be environmentally conscious… but aren’t. That’s why Big Oil just looooves hydrogen fuel! And that’s why the California Fuel Cell Partnership includes some Big Oil companies as well as major auto makers.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Fuel_Cell_Partnership

          2. Sivad says:

            But as this station demonstrates it cannot sustain that 100 mile a minute fill up rate all day. 60kg / 5kg fill up =12 fills x300 miles = 3,600 miles / 24 hrs. = 150 miles in an hour / 60 minutes = 2.5 miles in an hour.

            So charger to pump that is .33 miles to 2.5 miles per minute. Not too different but when we go back to cost and multiply that .33 miles per minute × 250 -500 L2 chargers at same cost as one hydrogen electrolysis station = 82.5 – 165 miles per minute.

            So when we look at the cost and real rate at which a station like this can produce and dispense hydrogen it is much worse than L2 chargers. 2.5 miles per min. for hydrogen station to 82.5 – 165 miles per minute for L2 charger at equivalent cost.

            1. Spider-Dan says:

              Comparing a 24-hour charge cycle is disingenuous from the start; no one is pulling up to a public charger at 2 AM.

              And ultimately, you’re making a long-winded argument for total capacity over speed. If you are the 11th person to drive up to an H2 station, you don’t have (say) an 18-hour wait for your fillup; you simply don’t fillup at all.

              EVSEs provide lots of miles, but very slowly. H2 stations provide less total miles at a (comparatively) blistering speed. Technology has tradeoffs.

              1. SIvad says:

                Ok, so cut both of those calculations to 12 hours instead of 24 hours. Same result.

                That’s the entire point. Speed is an issue for hydrogen stations if they are attempting to create hydrogen on-site using renewables. To maximize the speed benefit of hydrogen fueling you need either an even more expensive on-site renewable refueling station than the example in this article or you have to bring in your hydrogen through some infrastructure which also increases price of said fuel.

                There’s no escaping that fact. If you are using electrolysis to create hydrogen whether you are doing it on-site or remotely and trucking it in, it’s always going to be extremely expensive compared to conventional fuel or EV charging.

                1. Spider-Dan says:

                  The primary objection in these comments seems to be that this H2 station can “only” refill 10 cars per day. This objection is not consistent with the observation that FCVs are a hopeless technology that will have no uptake.

                  If there are less than 10 cars per day that need *full* refills, then that particular objection disappears. If FCVs sell fast enough that H2 stations are running against their fuel constraint at 3000 miles/day, then the technology is necessarily a success. Q.E.D.

                  1. Lensman says:

                    Spider-Dan, I don’t think it’s at all inconsistent with the overall message that fuel cell cars are a hopeless technology. The fact that the government spent $2 million to build a hydrogen fueling station which can only service 10 cars per day is a perfect illustration of -why- this is a hopeless technology. It’s not the actual fuel cell or the actual car that’s hopeless; it’s the generation, storage, and distribution of fuel which is impossibly expensive to actually get into a car which makes it a wholly impractical technology.

      2. Johnny GT says:

        I have 3 L2 ready outlets in my garage.
        I could fill 9, or almost as much as this “station” 🙂

      3. Lensman says:

        Spider-Dan said:

        “In comparison, a L2 charger would be able to fill less than three 300-mile BEVs from ’empty’ to full each day.”

        Yes, but nearly everybody can have the convenience of having an L2 charger at home, to charge while you sleep. No need to drive to a special place and wait to recharge the car.

        And most especially, it doesn’t cost $2 million to install a L2 EV home charger! Or even $200,000, or even $20,000. More like $2000, or perhaps even less.

        1. Spider-Dan says:

          Approximately 50% of drivers cannot charge at home. These are the customers to whom FCVs will be targeted.

          Charging away from home is too slow to be viable as the sole fuel source for a BEV.

          1. If we can pay to build FC fueling stations (at $2,500,000 a pop) we can pay to install public charge infrastructure at $10,000 each.

            Cities pay for light poles and parking meters. BMW even designed a light pole that also serves as an EV charger.

            1. Spider-Dan says:

              The difference is that one $2.5M station can be accessible to thousands, if not millions, of drivers; that is to say, any driver within, say, 20 miles can now consider buying an FCV.

              In contrast, given that BEVs essentially require daily or semi-daily overnight charging (because of the slow charge speed), you ultimately need to install an EVSE for every BEV driver, which evaporates the cost savings pretty quickly.

              But more importantly, while there is a clear vision for who will pay for H2 stations (energy companies that will sell you the H2), utility companies are not and will not be in the business of installing EVSEs. So who pays for their installation… apartment complexes? HOAs? Are cities going to pay to install rows of secure, metered EVSEs for every person who parks on the street in every residential neighborhood?

              1. Banzai says:

                “The difference is that one $2.5M station can be accessible to thousands, if not millions, of drivers; that is to say, any driver within, say, 20 miles can now consider buying an FCV.”

                Yes, “accessible” to those thousands, but only serviceable for 10-20 of them each day.

                If the choices in the market were only ICE, EV, and FCV, you might see more people “considering” the FCV. But with all of H2’s shortcomings (primarily availability), a Volt-like EREV is by far the most practical choice.

                We don’t have to wholly dismantle our gasoline infrastructure (nor does a wholesale replacement to H2 make sense), we just have to bias our usage away from it.

                Each option has interesting tradeoffs:

                – EREV – lug a heavy ICE around for the rare unlimited range trip. Zero convenience compromises in exchange for some efficiency cost.

                – 200-300mi EV – lug heavy batteries around just for the rare long trip (long-range EVs irk me a bit for this reason).

                – FCV – tether yourself to limited infrastructure and run on inefficient fuel.

                Give me a pure EV that has a swappable long-range battery pack. Keep me light and short-range 90% of the time but give me the option to swap in a heavy 300-miler pack for the handful of times I’ll need it (along with charge or swap options during the trip). At that point you have the best of all worlds and the value prop of the other options nearly completely collapses.

          2. Bill Howland says:

            I’ll take your figure that 1/2 of prospective EV owners can’t plug in at home. Seems excessive but in the big cities where most everyone rents, it might even be worse than this, ok.

            Level 1 timed plain old 15 amp 110 volt outlets (nema 5-15) installaed on streetlights, and paid for on a per hour basis by the centrally located (middle of the block) Parking Meter sticker printer, which would have the additional feature of turning on the streetlight outlet for the paid for amount of time would solve this problem. No electric metering would be involved, a good thing since most locales prevent ‘resale of metered electricity’, so if one assumes a constant 12 amp rate by the car (thats pretty much standardized from Teslas to Leafs to Volts – and if I in my Roadster tried to cheat the system, I’d just blow the 15 amp fuse after an hour by charging at 15 amps), then there is no electric metering involved and you are just charged, lets say 20 cents per hour to charge at the outlet. Say $1 for every 5 hours, plus whatever parking for the spot. These would be separate transactions since one light pole could cover several spots, or in sparesly lit streets, you could still get 40% parking spot availability by having 2 separate outlets on the same light pole, consistant with the 18 foot cord to the vehicle which the owner supplies.

            A rather large block of 50 parking spaces with 20 street lights and 1 outlet per street light would only be a total load of around 30 kw (15 kw per side), assuming trivial 70 watt sodium vapor street lighting, and would be easily handled by the existing 3 #6 Copper feeds back to the Utility for that side of the street.

            Before anyone is insulted that we’re only providing a ‘public’ charge facility (again, next to no public expenditure here, since the existing utility feed, which was installed beefily for mechanical robustness is existing, and only a few #12’s to the individual recepticles and 10 remotely switchable breakers are needed in a small Nema 3R panel to automatically turn the outlets on and off by the computerized centralized parking meter) with only 1300 watts of charging should realize apartment dwellers are very thankful for ANY EV facilities of any kind, and if they are forced to park on the street they can recharge for only $1 for 5 hours. Some locales might even provide the service gratis if their are other concerns, such that the $1 a day expense is well worth it compared to the Smog Mitigation an EV provides. In that case where this is provided as a ‘free public service’, its even cheaper to install, since no switching of the outlets in that case would be necessary and they can remain always energized.

            1. Bill Howland says:

              Yes, it is true that the serving Electric Utility would insist on the installation of a Revenue Meter on each side of the block, since the electric sales are no longer predictable, and depend on the mix of parked cars. No big problem since a little round 100 amp meter trough would more than suffice each side of the street’s 60-65 amp 240 volt loading, similiar to the same situation with cable tv repeaters with the billing meter installed on the power supply pole, ever since cable companies went to fiber optic trunk transmission.

            2. Spider-Dan says:

              Without getting too far into theory engineering, let me just say this:

              Do you have a working real-world example of this plan in action?

              If not, then we aren’t really talking about the same thing.

              1. Bill Howland says:

                Well if any locales are reading this blog, they can consider it an engineering service provided for free. Anyone can see Level 1 charging is easily provided on a street, the next time they decide to upgrade the parking meters, which in my poor town is happening much more frequently then you’d think.

                What a great time to also install a next to no cost charging infrastructure for apartment dwellers who’ll desparately be satisfied with anything.

          3. Lensman says:

            Spider-Dan said:

            “Approximately 50% of drivers cannot charge at home. These are the customers to whom FCVs will be targeted.”

            That’s like saying that in 1900, half of all potential automobile buyers wouldn’t have found a place to park if they drove their motorcar into town. Things have changed since then, now haven’t they?

            As EVs become more commonplace, more apartment owners will install EV charge points in their parking lots. And cities will install slow-charge points in municipal parking lots and at streetside parking.

            The lack of a garage doesn’t mean you can’t charge a plug-in EV. That’s true already; plenty of people install their EV charger on the outside of their house, or in a carport, or on a post at the side of a driveway.

            For renters who unfortunately lack a reserved parking place, and who can’t arrange to charge their car at work, it certainly becomes a lot harder. That is one place where things will have to change, and inevitably will. As plug-in EVs become commonplace, there will be increasing public pressure to make the needed changes. Just as cities changed to accommodate the automobile, they’ll change to accommodate PEVs. This change will be far easier and far less expensive than the last.

            Spider-Dan continued:

            “Charging away from home is too slow to be viable as the sole fuel source for a BEV.”

            It depends on the driver and on his driving habits. There are BEV owners who only charge at work, so your assertion here has already disproven by many drivers.

  8. kubel says:

    60kg/day (3000 miles)? Let’s compare that to Supercharger.

    A single Supercharger stall can do 8,160 miles per day (assuming each car only does a 30-minute charge). Multiply that by the number of units that location has (typically 2 to 8). You’re looking at a maximum of 16,320 to 65,280 miles from a Supercharger location, which I should add, is about 1/10th the cost of an electrolysis Hydrogen refueling station.

    So 5x less capacity than the smallest Supercharger location, at 10x the cost? Way to go Hydrogen!

    Electrolysis stations aren’t practical, they are PR stunts. The only practical method is on-site natural gas steam reforming.

    Musk was right, fuel cells are BS.

    1. Spider-Dan says:

      And what about all the rest of the chargers in the country that are not provided by Tesla?

      A L2 EVSE (the overwhelming majority of publicly available chargers) would take ~10 hours to give you 300 miles of range. Hydrogen stations can do it in 3 minutes, which is ~15 times faster than the best Supercharger refueling speed. Technology has tradeoffs.

      And on the subject of Superchargers, why aren’t you giving apples-to-apples numbers by Supercharging from empty to full? Superchargers are very fast at partial or half-charges, but charge all the way to full and the speed is significantly diminished.

      1. JakeY says:

        He’s talking about capacity, which is not about peak speed.

        Sure, the peak speed of a hydrogen station is a “3 minute” fuel up per pump, but the capacity of the station is limited by the kg/day it can provide, which is much less than the peak fueling speed.

        I’ve used much more conservative numbers for the superchargers in a previous calculation (300mph split over 2 stalls over a 12 hour day) and ended up with 14400 EPA miles per day for an 8 stall station, and even that still is much higher capacity than 3600 miles per day for this station.

        1. Spider-Dan says:

          Yes, he’s talking about capacity, but the capacity numbers he is using are based on “peak speed” 30 minute charges. You cannot charge a Model S from empty to full in 30 minutes, even on a Supercharger.

          1. JakeY says:

            Okay, then use half speed or even 1/3 the speed if you like. His points still stands even with that factored in.

        2. Spider-Dan says:

          Additionally, as I previously said, technology has tradeoffs. Charging stations can provide many more miles per day, but not remotely as fast.

          I am also presuming that like kubel, your 14,400 miles/day number is calculated with 24-hour charging. The idea that someone is going to regularly pull in to a charging stall at 2:45am and leave at 3:15am is frankly ridiculous; if we were being honest, we would compare capacity during reasonable hours.

          1. I charge at 2:45 am routinely. It’s so easy, I could do it in my sleep.

            1. Spider-Dan says:

              I doubt you’re using a Supercharger at 2:45am.

              1. Big Solar says:

                I have seen teslas (other than mine) at superchargers at approx 2 to 3 am more than once. The more of these cars are made the more we will see late nite drivers needing a charge.

              2. I have Supercharged at 2:45 am but surely don’t make it a regular practice. I am glad that Superchargers are open 7/24 and permit unattended access, which is not the case with all of the H2 dispensing stations. The CSULA station mentioned in the OP is not self-serve for example. That’s probably not a competitive advantage in the current market.

                The point is, most of my refueling is done while I sleep. That is a huge competitive advantage from a usability standpoint. It also significantly lowers the total cost of refueling infrastructure needed.

          2. JakeY says:

            I explicitly said 12 hour day and I’m using 300mph *split over 2 stalls* which is average speed plus factoring in power split of the superchargers (so a conservative number). A 120kW supercharger peaks at 375mph (which as you point out users can’t get unless they are charging only 50% of their capacity).

            The math is 300mph * 4 superchargers (8 stalls) * 12 hours = 14400 miles per day.

            Hydrogen stations from CARB documents also assume a 12 hour day.

      2. See Through says:

        kubel and the fanbois are talking utter nonsense. He is comparing the charging rate at super chargers, and convennienty forgets how that electricity is generated. If we forget the generation part, one h2 filling pump can fill up 12 hrs *12 cars per hour = 144 cars per day for 300 miles = 43200 miles daily.

        1. JakeY says:

          No, the comparison is apt. The hydrogen must be generated on site or delivered and that rate is much, much slower than the rate of the pumps. By your own math 43200 miles daily for one pump (optimistic, but I’ll go with it), but the generation rate is only 60kg/day or 3600 miles. So pump rate is 12x that of the capacity (which is the critical bottle neck of the station).

          The superchargers on the other hand does have the back end infrastructure to deliver the 14400 miles /day I was talking about. EPA consumption is 38kWh/100miles for the Model S (charging efficiency already factored in), that’s 5472kWh delivered over 12 hours or about 456kW consumption. That’s something the existing electrical infrastructure can certainly handle (Tesla uses regularly available 500kVA = 500kW service). So superchargers are well matched to the electrical infrastructure (with room to grow, as 1MW connections are not uncommon for example for service for a mall, plus battery buffering can also be used to help).

        2. Big Solar says:

          I found a pic of you

      3. BravelilToaster says:

        Personally, I don’t care, since my next lease will be a 2017 Tesla, purely *because* of the superchargers.

        Tesla puts their superchargers where they’re needed, not where some politician thinks that it would be a good PR stunt, or at poorly located car dealerships. Plus they provide more than one plug for redundancy and thinking ahead to a future where EVs are remotely common, as opposed to the present when they are rare and likely to be criticized for their underutilization this election cycle. Plus they made those plugs such that they’re not overly complicated and easy to break.

  9. Omar Sultan says:

    Info posted over on GCR would seem to indicate this station is only set up for B2B – as a consumer, you cannot roll up to the pump and buy a couple of kgs of H2.

    1. That is correct. Fuel is sold to automakers, not to end users.

      Scientific American reports that fuel sold by the most recent H2 fuel station to open in Sacramento sells H2 for $13.59 per kg.

      http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/has-the-time-finally-come-for-california-s-hydrogen-highway/

      Brad Berman reported ~$12.50 at Emeryville a couple years ago.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/24/automobiles/fuel-cells-at-center-stage.html?pagewanted=all&_r=1&

  10. Mike says:

    We didn’t find information on price yet, but as some sources state, $8/kg would translate to $48 to refuel for 300 miles.

    ^ ^ ^
    Where do I sign up? Sounds like a great deal-NOT

  11. Epicurus says:

    What’s the chance there will be home electrolysis systems using rooftop solar for the electricity?

    1. Johnny GT says:

      A company called United Nuclear had a kit to do just that, that paired with their Hydrogen Conversion Kit. It looked very promising until key parts of their technology suddenly became “illegal” I followed them for several years considering converting a car. Their website doesn’t mention any of it now…which is a shame. Filling a Hydrogen car at home the same way we charge EV’s could have been a good option.

      https://www.scribd.com/doc/47991798/7/United-Nuclear-Hydrogen-Fuel-System-Kit

    2. The chief proponent of this approach recently has been chemistry professor Dan Nocera, formerly at MIT, now at Harvard.

      He founded a company called Sun Catalytix to commercialize his artificial photosynthesis process, but it proved to be too expensive and complex,. Sun Catalytix pivoted and went into the flow battery business.

    1. Fabian says:

      How convenient that the Lithium-6 deuteride is impossible to buy….

  12. Bill Howland says:

    Even from the pro-hydrogen crowd, I haven’t heard any definitive information as to what feedstock is going to produce it, whether it is going to be ‘reformed’ at the fueling station itself, and what the price is going to be.

    Even $8/KG is too high ; if others are saying that it is really going to be $12/kg then how is a normal person supposed to afford to refuel,

    and more to the point, why would they?

    1. Spider-Dan says:

      $8/kg = $0.16/mile.

      Chargepoint charges $0.49/kWh to use their EVSEs. If a 7.2kW L2 charger gives 20 miles of charge per hour, that works out to $0.176/mile.

      Superchargers are not free; they come included in the price of an extremely expensive car. L2 chargers will only remain free (and available to use) as long as EVs are a niche product.

      What rates are you seeing for commercial EVSEs in your area?

      1. Spider-Dan, you seem to misunderstand how Tesla and most EVs work. If you’d like to come take a drive in mine (including supercharger) I welcome your visit, either at an Electric Car Guest Drive event or any weekend I’m free. I travel from Seattle to San Diego regularly, so anywhere along the West Coast would work.

        The Supercharger network is only intended to be used when a Tesla driver is traveling over 100 miles from home. All the other time, EV drivers generally pay anywhere from $0.04 to $0.16 per kWh for fuel. The ~$2,000 per vehicle Supercharger cost is to obtain that long-distance capability. And if you don’t want it, you can buy a non-SC Model S 60.

        Other public charge infrastructure is also more expensive than charging at home. You’re paying a convenience fee, like eating out at a restaurant.

        And the price for H2, as I’ve pointed out elsewhere, is not $8/kg dispensed at retail. It’s about $13.50 per kg, as published in Scientific American and the New York Times.

        The price might come down, I hope it does. But it’s also a certainty that the residential and commercial cost of solar will continue to come down. (Germany pays about 1/2 the installed cost as the US. There is a lot of room for solar prices to come down).

        1. Spider-Dan says:

          I am quite aware that charging at home is significantly cheaper; the 20,000+ electric miles I have driven attest to that. And for people who are able to charge at home, an affordable long-range BEV would totally eliminate the need for an FCV.

          When I talk about the cost of commercial charging (which is simply a convenience fee for those with home EVSEs), I am referring to people who don’t have the option to charge at home. For these people, the cost of charging is much higher, and generally is not even cost-competitive with $4/gal gasoline (to say nothing of the $2/gal we are seeing now).

          So if you fall into the ~50% of American drivers who can’t charge at home, any non-ICE solution is going to cost you more in fuel.

          1. Bill Howland says:

            I’m sure this is a temporary condition. For those people who cannot charge at home I’m sure landlords or others may provide ‘timed’ 110 volt outlets energized with a code or card.

            Or it might be as simple as asking the landlord cound you install at your espense a lockable outlet on your billing meter, or if thats prohibitive, install an outlet with a colcated billing meter the would meter this outlet that only you had access to,, The HUGE COST of this added appurtenance is a whopping $25 (10 for the socket and 15 for the utility grade revenue meter – from Hialeahmeter.com, amoungst others). That way the landlord or tenant would not have to do any huge amount of rewiring, and for smaller properties with only one of the tenants having an ev, private arrangements might be worked out whereas the landload knows what his bill is going to be month to month, and they make an agreement with the sole EV tenant to just pay the difference on the ‘house’ electric bill.

            People always seem to make things harder than they have to be.

            I think most locales are changing their laws such that if a tenant wants to install facilities for EV’s, that, as long as the facilities revert to the landlord (installation of a recepticle on their billing meter, as a for instance), the landlord must allow this, and in this case, it just increases the value of his property anyway, so there should be no objection.

            1. Spider-Dan says:

              Again, you seem to be talking about what apartment complex owners or city managers *could* do, not what they are actually willing to do.

              Do you have any real-world examples of this kind of setup? L1 charging is not exactly cutting edge technology.

              1. Bill Howland says:

                In NY State, I believe the laws have been changed so that if an EV tenant pays for facility additions, the landlord HAS to allow this unless he can prove undue hardship.

                But really, most people are we would like to think at least, reasonable, and if the tenant will pay for the additions and they’re not an eyesore, then I’d think most landlords would do it anyway just to maintain good relationships with their tenants. But in NY State, they HAVE to be accomodating.

                1. sven says:

                  I know of no such law in NYS, but California and Colorado have such a law.

            2. Bill Howland says:

              Let’s see if we can make a Lemonade situation out of Lemons.
              Let’s say our prospective EV buyer rents a garage space in a condominium/apartment building with Detached garage spaces on the back of the property.

              Lets say this is a large row of 30 single garage spaces with a very small rental office run by the Landlord at the end of the garages which is fed by a small 100 amp panel for the office, lighting in the garages, and an occasional ‘battery charger’ outlet.

              Lets say everyone agrees there is 40 amps spare on this electric service since the existing equipment, even the window air conditioner for the office, can’t possibly use more than 60 amps (14 kw).

              This means up to 6 – level 1 charging facilities could be run off this existing panel (installation of up to 6 single pole 15 amp breakers, with a 14/2 armored cable (BX) to each locked recepticle. These (up to ) 6 EV tenants would pay to have this cable installed in the box by a licensed electrician, and also have at their space, installed a revenue meter socket (with revenue meter), with the landlord’s security seal on it, ($10.50 for the meter socket, and $15.50 for the meter) from hialeahmeter.com. So for $31 the landlord knows exactly how much juice the EV from the tenant is using and, an agreement would be made to sell the tenant the electricity at the same rate the landlord himself is paying for it. THe additional load on the formerly lightly loaded 100 amp service for the garage complex would go up 36 amps at 240 (6 – 12 amp charger bricks charging simultaneously), which doesn’t overload anything.

              1. Spider-Dan says:

                But what you are talking about is not a standard EVSE installation. You’re talking about an untested theoretical setup that is drastically different from the established process of commercial EVSE installation.

                Furthermore, I don’t think the law of any state requires apartment owners to allow tenants to piggyback on streetlights, with highly irregular electrical usage billing. In every apartment I’ve ever been in, my metered electricity usage is in my name and billed to me; the management isn’t responsible for breaking down electricity usage (by time of use rates!) and sub-billing tenants.

                But all of this is window dressing. Running L1 service is a complete waste of time, because the lion’s share of EVSE installation costs is not the equipment or the wiring; it’s the cost to dig the trenches for the wiring to go in. And if you are running wires from a office at the end of the lot to provide service to a row of 30 parking spaces, nearly all of your money is going to trenching, so at that point you might as well install smart L2 EVSEs and simplify this. (This is presuming that a *renter* would foot the tens of thousands of dollars necessary to pay for this trenching… which they would not.)

                Finally, your proposal is for 6 EVSEs to serve 30 parking spots. Are the other 24 tenants driving ICEs, or FCVs? Because they have no other serious option.

                BEVs are not a one-size-fits-all solution, because there is no one-size-fits-all zero emission solution.

                1. Lensman says:

                  Seriously, thousands of dollars just to dig a trench in the yard of an apartment building to run a power line to the parking lot?

                  Google Fiber charged us $300 to install their fiber optic cable, which included using a digging machine to dig a trench across the yard.

                  Spider-Dan, your posts reflect a very skewed and one-sided viewpoint. There is already one city in California with a new municipal regulation requiring all new apartment buildings have to include EV charge points in their parking lots, as previously reported at InsideEVs:

                  http://insideevs.com/palo-alto-now-requires-new-apartments-condos-hotels-etc-ev-charging-ready/

                  That’s the start of a trend which will inevitably grow.

                  Anyone using common sense will realize that as the numbers of PEVs grow, so will the accommodation they are given by our cities and our culture. The EV revolution is still in its early days, but there is no doubt it will accelerate in future years.

                  1. Spider-Dan says:

                    Did you seriously just cite Google Fiber as a reasonable example of costs? Because Google Fiber is damn near charity compared to real, commercial installation costs.

                    In any case, we aren’t talking about fiber; we’re talking about EVSE installation. And the costs for those include *thousands of dollars to dig trenches*. See:

                    http://cleantechnica.com/2014/05/03/ev-charging-station-infrastructure-costs/

                    1. Bill Howland says:

                      I’m just saying people make ‘private’ arrangements with their landlords all the time.

                      My tenant just asked for permission to install an electric stove: I provided a 30″ gas one gratis and there was no existing provision for an electric one.

                      I said lets make a deal.. You sell the gas stove, give me the money for it, and I’ll install the outlet for your electric stove at my expense.

                      I’m sure this kind of thing goes on all the time between tenants and landlords and it doesn’t necessarily make national news.

                      My point about street lighting systems is that just because it hasn’t happened yet I bet it happens SOON as EV penetration grows. Its too cheap to do to NOT happen. I’m sure I’m not the only one who can figure this stuff out.. Its not rocket science.

                      Apartment dwellers aren’t demanding 20 kw Tesla model S facilites for every car. They would be more than satisfied to plug in their Volt overnight so that they wouldn’t have to use quite so much gasoline, and a 110 volt outlet would go far to satisfy them.

                      Your insistance on ‘expensive EVSE’s ‘ is disproven by GM’s own experience.

                      55% of volts are charged without a special EVSE, but the 110 thingy that comes with the car.

                    2. Spider-Dan says:

                      L1 is perfectly fine for PHEVs like the Volt. I said it is not practical for BEVs (particularly long-range BEVs), and I stick by that.

                      Do you have the stats on how many Model Ses are charged with L1? How about Leafs?

                    3. Bill Howland says:

                      Brian here who has a Leaf has told me, although he currently has a 15 amp docking station, that if he had to he could get by with 12 amps 110.

                      I don’t have any figures as to how many BEV owners actually do.

                      I don’t understand why BEV owners must drive more miles on average than the typical 30 per day. They can go much more than this occassionally, and use the weekend to replenish their battery more fully.

                      And besides I’m comparing the situation of haveing Absolutely Nothing, to having something…. Why do you insist that EV drivers have to have total perfection all the time? Or that an EV driver is totally incapable of making his own private arrangements with a landlord?

                      Just as Paul Scott, I think that’s his name (car salesman for Nissan in Los Angeles) finally made a deal with his landlord to get a 15 amp 110 volt recepticle to plug his Leaf into, so I’m sure many other Apartment / COndo dwellers could make arrangements.

                      Forward thinking landlords could have some parking spots arranged in an area with plugs for those who want to use them. Just give the key to the padlock on the thing to the tenant(s) who arranged to use them. Or some other defacto metering scheme…. The one I suggested costs exactly $31 plus installation and is 99% accurate.

                      You seem to be saying that if there is not a hugely elaborate expensive store-bought scheme available, then people, both landlords and tenants, are totally helpless.

                      I don’t think this accurately reflects the situation, and that tenants and landlords will continually work out mutually beneficial, low cost solutions.

                      Its a Big Country. People will find what works for them at the lowest cost possible. They do not need, nor expect Perfection.

                  2. Bill Howland says:

                    I wouldn’t advise charging a Tesla at 110 since all Tesla chargers at 110 , whether Roadsters, Rav4evs, Mercedes B-Class, or S’s, truly suck.

                    For the same $31 meter and socket combination the landlord or tenant can install an RV nema 14-50 outlet in a weatherproof box since the Model S owner will have his own ’40 amp’ cordset. So maybe the typical installation of a forward thinking landlord may be 10 metered outlets using the $31 metering per outlet, and have 8 115 volt 12 amp facilities, and 2 – 40 amp RV outlets for tenants have S’s or X’s, or other tenants that have their own portable evse’s. Now the landlord is probably not going to want to change his service equipment since that stuff gets really pricey, but he may be willing to put in EV friendly metered outlets to the extent his particular buildings will allow them.

                    I know of personally some 10 apartment / buildings that have (what is now) ridiculous 150 amp 120/240 volt house meters where the total load is a few smoke detectors, a sump pump that never runs, and 10 – 13 watt cfl’s.

                    This service could take the above arrangement without changing anything.

                    Other landlords won’t be able to do as much, but the point is don’t constantly insist on perfection during this obviously developmental period of EV’s for apartment dwellers.

                    1. Bill Howland says:

                      There’s all kinds of permutations you could do on the above situation…

                      Perhaps a third S owner could have his own RV outlet installed, such that it is cabled to his own meter so that totally is removed from the house load, and there is no metering issue since its on his meter anyway.

                      Perhaps another identical apartment only has a 100 amp 120/240 volt house meter.. Then perhaps we could have 6 – 12 amp recepticles and the 2 – rv outlets could be wired on 30 amp breakers such that the 240 volt EV’s (s’s or x’s) are agreed to adjust their cars to only 24 amps 240 otherwise the breaker will trip. So 48 plus 36 is 84 amps. We are getting close to the limit, but maybe not everyone charges exactly at the same time. Or if it doesn’t work maybe the Tesla’s could charge at 16 amps 240.

                      So where there is a will there is a way, and the landlord nor tenant has purchased not one superfluous EVSE.

                    2. Bill Howland says:

                      Or, going back to the 30 stall garage scenario where we have a 100 amp service running the thing, perhaps we could install in the back of each stall:

                      1). A $31 120/240 revenue meter 99% accurate meter with a landlord seal, fed with a 20 amp double pole breaker.

                      2). A 240 volt RV outlet and a 115 nema 5 – 15 plain outlet for 110 volt charger bricks.

                      If done all at once, this would be well under $10,000 for 30 spaces, including labor.

                      Each space could handle either a 115 volt 12 amp load or a 16 amp 240 volt load. The 115 volt recepticals would be wired on the red wire if an odd stall and the black wire if an even stall.

                      Now not every tenant is going to have an EV, but those that do can be either 115 or 230.

                      THe only restriction is that, for tenants that must provide a portable evse for their cars, no larger than a 16 amp one would be allowed, even if the car has a 6.6 kw charger in it.

                      S’s, and X’s would be understood to adjust their charging rates to 16 amps otherwise the 20 amp breaker will trip.

                      The landlord would just have to calculate how many ev’s he can handle at any given time in the garages.

                      But again, the point is that practically, since EVERYONE is not going to have an ev, accomodation can be made for tenants which rent a place that is ev friendly, should they have an EV.

                      To save even more money perhaps the landlord only has 1/3 of the stalls wired, and simply rents out any particular space depending on whether you own an EV or not.

                    3. Spider-Dan says:

                      The general problem I have with these kind of one-off solutions is that you are left to the whim of the property owner/HOA.

                      Let’s set aside apartments/rentals for the moment, since the prospect of making any sort of substantial investment in someone else’s property is not really financially sound. Instead, let’s take the case of a condo owner (who has a vested interest in upgrades that materially affect the value of his property) who has to deal with an HOA to make modifications to “shared” spaces like parking lots.

                      Now, maybe you can get your HOA to agree to foot the bill to install EVSEs based on the property value increase. Maybe you can get them to let you use the existing unmetered 120V outlet right next to your stall. Maybe your stall happens to be adjacent to your unit and all you have to do is buy and mount a $500 L2 EVSE on your own wall. These would all be great scenarios… for you.

                      But these are not big picture scenarios that can be applied to make BEVs practical for everyone. If you’re talking about piecemeal individual negotiation, then you’re expecting every BEV driver (in this scenario) to be a knowledgeable EV advocate with good bargaining skills. This is not a fair expectation.

                      While legislation that prohibits property owners and HOAs from outright banning EVSEs is critical, that legislation only applies to fully-above-board professional installations by licensed contractors, not this kind of DIY $50-in-parts-from-Home-Depot cost-cutting. That sort of mindset is only appropriate in the garage of one’s own house.

                      So while there may be a place for innovative new thinking in commercial EVSE installation, it’s outside the scope of what I’m discussing. As I have said before, I’m not talking about what people hypothetically *could do*; I am talking about what they *are* doing.

                    4. Bill Howland says:

                      You’ve mentioned several times now about getting management to install EVSE’s.

                      To date, there are NO ev’s or PHEV’s that require them to be purchased by the management.

                      If desired, the renter can provide his own portable evse, but even that is rarely required.

                      Tesla products, which legitimately are the only cars more efficient on 220, don’t need EVSE’s either. They need RV outlets.

                      So you constantly bang the drum about huge expenses. I don’t think enterprising tenants and landlords’ solutions are going to cost that much money.

                      People are smarter than you think, especially when its something they want or need.

    2. Big Solar says:

      Dont worry, they wont.

  13. Lennart says:

    And how much kWh uses the electrolyzer to produce one kg of H2?

    1. Sivad says:

      This has been covered in other discussions on different sites on the same station. They are claiming their station uses something in the ballpark of 50 kWh on site to make on kg of hydrogen.

      So if they used their solar panels and electricity to charge BEVs instead they could give an EV almost 200 miles of range for that one kg of hydrogen that will give the Mirai only 60-70.

  14. kdawg says:

    “It’s equivalent to getting the first sticker from the state government to sell gasoline by the gallon.”
    ——-

    LOL.. even they are comparing themselves to the old gasoline model.

    1. This is a university-based research project, so it’s laudable that they are doing novel engineering and making technological progress. Being the first to get the per-kg permit is actually a pretty big deal. It took a lot of work to get there. Kudos to them.

      1. kdawg says:

        Good engineering. Bad reference.

  15. Nix says:

    Filling a tank to 350 bar from the same station that fills 700 bar is going to waste a lot of energy.

    350 bar ~= 5,000 psi
    700 bar ~= 10,000 psi

    In order to fill a car to 10,000 psi, the source tank needs to be at a higher pressure than the tank being filled. The higher the pressure difference, the faster the fill. I’ve seen numbers between 16,000 psi to 20,000 psi for the source tank in order to quickly fill a tank to 10,000 psi.

    It takes a lot of electricity to pump to 16-20,000 psi, which is a huge overkill for any car that can only be filled to 5,000 psi.

    Every time a car is filled to 5,000 psi from a tank that is pressurized to 16-20,000 psi, all of the extra energy put into pressurizing that fuel to such high pressures is just a huge waste of energy.

    But then again, wasting energy seems to be an acceptable trade-off for folks who want these vehicles. So I doubt any potential buyer will give a second thought to the efficiency losses caused by over-pressurizing the H2.

    1. I think the efficiency losses will be umm, lost, on most customers, but the pricing won’t.

  16. Bill Howland says:

    As regards the pressure, I thought the boiling hydrogen built up its own pressure….In other words I thought it was going to be trucked to the station liquified. But thats a detail – there’s several ways to skin a cat, especially if you are throwing $2,000,000 per station at it.

    Spider Dan keeps saying an EVSE and the related capacity supply facilities are required for apartment dwellers..

    Ok all you apartment dwellers. If you didn’t have anything else would you be satisfied to have a Level 1 facility where you were expected to use your own ‘charger brick’ supplied with the car?

    I haven’t done any Nielson Surveys , but I would wager any apartment dwelling EV owners would be more than satisfied with a low cost or no – cost 15 amp plug they could use. If they are paying 20 cents an hour or whatever for the service, then they’d just put their own padlock on the outlet to prevent the next guy from using their paid for electricity.

    To me its a WIN-WIN all around, and the utility will like it since its a very very small load over a long period of time, most likely using cheap baseload electricity for the majority of the time overnight.

    So its a win-win-win.

    1. Spider-Dan says:

      Charging a long-range BEV on L1 is pretty useless. In CA, you can’t even charge a 38-mile Volt to full during off-peak rates… a 200+ mile BEV would be charging well into peak rates, which quickly eliminates the EV cost advantage.

      1. Bill Howland says:

        I forget the name of that Nissan Car Salesman who used to post on plugincars, but HE lived in an apartment and he was very greatful to finally make arrangements to get a level one facility for his Leaf.

        Since the typical BEV driver may only drive 30 miles per day, there may be some days that they use more miles than they’ve accrued for the day. So what? They’ll recharge the battery more fully on the days that they drive less or charge for a longer period of time, and incidentally, I said MOST of the charging would be off peak, allowing for some to be at the Shoulder Peak Times.

      2. Spider-Dan says:

        Actually, I’m significantly understating it. A long range BEV would take several DAYS (60+ hours for a 200 mile BEV) to charge to full at home, including exorbitant peak rate kWh pricing. (And that’s presuming you aren’t driving at all.) That is not even remotely viable.

        Of course, you could get a faster charge at a commercial station… but those rates are not even competitive with $4/gal gas.

        1. Lensman says:

          Good grief, Spider-Dan. Those “exorbitant rates” for electricity are still a -lot- cheaper than running your car on gasoline!

          And no, those who charge at home should ordinarily -never- have to charge their PEV during peak electricity usage hours. After a long trip in a long-range PEV, you may need to charge for 12-14 hours a day for a day or three to get it back up to 80%+ charge. No need for 24 hour charging; in fact, if you’re using the car to commute to work every day, you couldn’t even if you wanted to.

          Spider-Dan said:

          “Actually, I’m significantly understating it. A long range BEV would take several DAYS (60+ hours for a 200 mile BEV)”

          Please stop with the FUD.

          So what if it -does- take 60+ hours to fully charge your Tesla Model S from 0% state of charge on a 110 volt outlet? There’s no other PEV out there that can go 200+ miles on a charge, so you can only be talking about the Model S. Tesla always ensures a buyer has a L2 charger installed at home before they take delivery of the car, so your scenario only applies to someone staying overnight at the destination. And if he’s driving that far, he can stop at a SuperCharger along the way… so again, you’ve cherry-picked a worst-case scenario just to spin FUD.

          Again, the average driver doesn’t need to fully charge his PEV every night. Not even someone who owns a Tesla Model S.

          1. Spider-Dan says:

            PG&E is the main utility company in California. For customers on their EV rate plan, summer peak rates are 0.392/kWh. That is equivalent to ~$0.14/mile.

            In a 37 MPG gen1 Volt, that is equivalent to $5.18/gal gasoline. So, yeah… not competitive.

            You might be wondering about the winter peak rate. It’s $0.265/kWh, which is equivalent to $3.53/gal gas (again, in the *winter*). Not exactly great, either.

            As for charging a long-range BEV on L1: if you are still driving this car ~30 miles a day, “12-14 hours a day” would take you WEEKS to recharge (if you even have a net positive daily charge at all, which is questionable).

        2. Bill Howland says:

          The only part I’ll agree with you Spider-dan is that Californians have allowed their electrical systems to be screwed up.

          I pay 12 to 13 cents / kwh year round, with no time-of-day pricing. It is offered, but there are few grabbers since the basic juice is cheap enough. I believe most Californians would die to pay 12 to 13 cents 24/7/365.

          Now if you guys let there be a Hydrogen Gas station surcharge on your taxes or electric bills to subsidize the construction of these H2 stations, I don’t know what to tell you. I know what I would do.

          1. Spider-Dan says:

            What part of the country do you live in? I would be shocked to hear that any state on the southern border has electricity rates that low, and states at higher latitudes wouldn’t have the kind of electricity (read: A/C) usage that you would see in warmer climates.

            1. Bill Howland says:

              Buffalo, New York. Several parts of the country are 7 or 8 cents 24/7/365. Like Idaho, Oregan, Washington, W Va, but you’re not gonna like ’em cuz they’re coal.

              1. Bill Howland says:

                Washington and Oregan are obviously Hydro. Its getting late.

              2. Spider-Dan says:

                Well, I wouldn’t exactly say that CA has “allowed their electrical systems to be screwed up”; we just need a lot more electricity in the summer than the northern climates do, and the prices reflect that.

                Similarly, I’m pretty sure your heating oil bill dwarfs my gas bill…

                1. Bill Howland says:

                  Personally what do I spend?
                  $15.47 / month for electricity since I have a ‘solar powered piggy bank’ where the utility ‘owes me electricity’. The meter reading charge is $17 but obviously I play rate games to get that reduced.
                  BUt if i did use electricity my marginal cost for the juice would be 12 or 13 cents/kwh.

                  Gas wise I paid just under $100 last month. This month, like last january was unbearably cold, so I’ll pay about $150.

                  My internet bill was $15, My cell phone is $10/month, and my landline telephone is $30. My tv is fully digital , hd, rooftop antenna free, with a tenna-rotator ka-klunker, running into 3 tv sets, the other 2 being wifi driven off the internet service.
                  During the summer time I have a 2 1/2 ton, 14 amp air conditioner, with a 6 amp (115 volt) air handler load.

                  The electricity goes to substantially my 2 ev’s. The rest of the house is substantially cfl’s, at least the lights on all the time.

                  Gas appliances are 100,000 btu/hr Furnace
                  Hot Tub 125,000
                  Water Heater 40,000
                  Wall double oven 17,000
                  built in cooktop 60,000
                  Family room heater 7,000
                  Living Room fire place 22,000
                  Clothes Dryer 20,000.

                  I have a charcoal grille which I never use, preferring a charbroil 1700 watt unit , and a brickman 1600 watt smoker that I can also use as a grill.

                  The 8 ft x 10 ft hot tub has a 150 watt ozone generator, 2 small circulator pumps and about 5kw of jet pump load (6 brake horsepower, or 12 horsepower in hot tub exaggerated advertising).\

                  Its a 2 storey, 2200 sq ft, 4 bedroom colonial.

                  SO, other than motor loads, and 2 ev’s which are portable motor loads, most of the home’s energy consumption is natural gas. I have no fuel oil, but I do have a gas can for the emergency cheapie 5 kw generator.

                  THe snow blower and lawn mower are both electric.

                  1. Bill Howland says:

                    Oh I forgot, a 3 person swedish style indoor Sauna which is around 1800 watts.

                    As far as service sizes go, I have a 275,000 btu/hour gas meter at the standard 1/4 pound per square inch (7″ watercolumn) with a connected load in the high 300’s but as a practical matter I never use more than 275 at any one time.

                    Electrically I have a 100 amp service which is the same age as the house, and it was somewhat large for the time although the house did have electric cooking which I replaced with natural gas.

                    Now conceivably I could get by with 60 amps, but then I’d have to be circumspect about what I ran at one time. As it is I can run everything I want and charge both cars anytime I want and not worry about a thing.

      3. Lensman says:

        Spider-Dan said:

        “Charging a long-range BEV on L1 is pretty useless.”

        I see Spider-Dan is posting EV bashing FUD again.

        The average driver drives less than 40 miles per day, so a L1 home charger would be entirely sufficient for most drivers. And a larger battery doesn’t -have- to be fully charged every night, any more than you -have- to fill up your gas guzzler’s gas tank every night. The gas guzzlers runs just find on half a tank of gas, and the long-range BEV runs just fine on a 50% charge. If it takes two or three nights to return your long-range BEV to a full charge after a long trip, who cares?

        And if you are someone who frequently makes long trips, then just don’t buy a BEV. That’s why they make different cars; no one car is for everyone.

        For most PEV drivers, a L2 charger isn’t a necessity; it’s just nice to have.

        1. Spider-Dan says:

          What is this “PEV” acronym you keep using? You use it to refer to a Model S, but you don’t seem to mean “BEV.” And since I specifically said that “Charging a long-range BEV on L1 is pretty useless,” I can’t imagine that you are wasting everyone’s time by applying that statement to PHEVs (for which L1 is perfectly adequate).

          Now, as to what I actually said: I find it strange that you claim that L1 is perfectly fine for an EV with a long-range battery, yet at the same time you say, “Tesla always ensures a buyer has a L2 charger installed at home before they take delivery of the car.” Seems like Tesla agrees with me, not you.