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Electric and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles (EVs and HVs) operate on different power trains but share a common problem: a lack of infrastructure to refuel.
Hydrogen’s problem is worse. EVs can plug into a wall socket at home or a kiosk connected to the electric grid but HVs have to find a tankful of the gas. 
The hydrogen that fills those tanks typically is made by pulling it out of natural gas at a refinery, then trucking it to huge tanks, usually buried underground for safety, where HVs can tap into it.
Now the fledgling hydrogen economy has taken a key step toward becoming commercial with Hydrogen Fuels, Australia’s self-contained hydrogen production and refueling station.
The station uses solar power to extract hydrogen from rainwater instead of natural gas, earning it the moniker of “green hydrogen,” a key to widespread use of hydrogen in a carbon-conscious world.
Instead of burying its hydrogen tank in the ground, the refueling island keeps it topside so installation of the refueling station can be relatively quick and cheap.
A demonstration plant being built in Melbourne’s industrial heartland will initially produce up to 90 kilograms of hydrogen daily, equivalent to only about 30 gallons of gasoline; but eventually, it will scale to become capable of fueling more than 100 vehicles every day.
The five-hectare site will not only be a fuel stop; it’s also a research and development center for Hydrogen Fuels Australia and its partners, including Sweden’s Nilsson Energy, Green Hydrogen Systems in Denmark, and New York-based Plug Power.
The plant is scheduled to be producing hydrogen fuel before next March.
TRENDPOST: The technology and infrastructure of tomorrow’s hydrogen economy has been evolving quietly, out of the spotlight. Now, with a hydrogen fuel system running on water and sunshine instead of natural gas, with hydrogen trains criss-crossing Europe (“All Aboard the Hydrogen Train,” Trends Journal, 15 June, 2021), and with nations competing to be the “Saudi Arabia of hydrogen,” (“The Emerging Hydrogen Economy,” Trends Journal, 13 April, 2021), the hydrogen economy can expect to have a comfortable place in the world’s energy mix by the end of this decade as the cost of refining hydrogen falls due to new technologies and scaling of production.

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