Wal-Mart Continues Fuel Cell Project
Written by: MHM Staff
The Wal-Mart distribution center in Grove City, Ohio, received a visit
from Ohio's Lieutenant Governor Bruce Johnson where he viewed a fuel
cell project in operation. The project, a consortium led by Cellex
Power Products Corp. (British Columbia), which replaces lead acid
batteries used by lift trucks with fuel cell power systems, will
receive a $ million grant through the Third Frontier Fuel Cell
Initiative, a special project in Ohio.
"Ohio has repeatedly demonstrated its commitment to fuel cell
technology since the inception of the Third Frontier Project in 2002,"
said Johnson, who also serves as Director of the Ohio Department of
Development. "Projects like this one, ADVERTISEMENT
which is good for Ohio businesses and workers and for the environment,
are proof that this technology is viable in our state."
Fourteen Cellex fuel cell power units fueled indoors with hydrogen
supplied by BOC, a member of The Linde Group, are operating in two Ohio
Wal-Mart DCs for four months. The objective of this trial is to
demonstrate whether Cellex fuel cell products provide superior
performance and health and safety benefits compared to incumbent lead
acid battery technology for businesses operating large fleets of lift
Wal-Mart Executive Vice President of Logistics and Supply Chain,
Johnnie Dobbs said, "One of Wal-Mart's environmental goals is to
increase the efficiency of our existing facilities in a number of
areas." Dobbs added, "Embracing new technologies such as hydrogen fuel
cells will play an important role in defining how successful we are."
In addition to consortium players, the project has other Ohio ties. New
Bremen based Crown Equipment Corporation; the largest electric lift
truck manufacturer in North America has supplied pallet trucks for the
Grove City DC. Ohio based OKI Systems, a leading lift truck servicing
dealer is providing service and support. Cellex CX-P150 units use Mark9
SSL fuel cell stacks from Ballard Power Systems Inc., world leader in
design, development and manufacture of zero-emission proton exchange
membrane (PEM) fuel cells.
Tom Hoying, Cellex vice president, sales and marketing said,
"Wal-Mart's leadership in testing hydrogen fuel cells is very
important not only for the material handling sector but also for the
global environment." Hoying added, "Cellex's CX-P150 power units
currently in use at these two Wal-Mart DCs increase productivity by
enabling trucks to stay on the floor longer and provide environmental
benefits such as eliminating handling of lead and acid required with
industrial batteries." Hoying said, "If this test meets everyone's
expectations, with Wal-Mart's size and global presence, they're in
position to make significant reductions in greenhouse gases and
criteria air contamination on a global scale.
Cellex estimates the project will create more than 100 jobs by 2011.
Source: Cellex Power Products Corp.