Through the Fuel Cell Challenge, we encourage students to create technologies and innovations that impact the market. Launched in 2006, the Fuel Cell Challenge connects industry- leading innovation at the University of South Carolina with the real world challenges faced by cutting- edge hydrogen and fuel cell businesses.


The Fuel Cell Challenge funds teams annually through two competitions:

  • Industry Challenge: Student teams respond to real-world challenges presented by private businesses working in the hydrogen and fuel cell market
  • Innovation Challenge: Students who are ahead of the market with an innovative technology, concept, or idea submit a proposal for funding to develop a prototype

We build sustainable businesses from concept to prototype to launch through partnerships with:

  • CETi: Through the USC-Columbia Technology Incubator’s Center for Entrepreneurial & Technological Innovation (CETi), the Fuel Cell Collaborative assists innovators with promising concepts on the basics of building a business around a technology.
  • USC-Columbia Technology Incubator: Once a clear business plan and model is in place, entrepreneneurs have the opportunity to move into the Incubator with access to an entreprneur-in-residence and 30+ fellow technology startups.
  • SC Launch: Companies that are particularly promising may qualify for the SC Launch program. SC Launch provides mentorship and bridge funding to help early-stage companies commercialize their products and services.