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December 07, 2015

Richland School District Two’s Institute of Innovation is receiving a hydrogen fuel cell unit formerly in use at Fort Jackson.

The redeployment, part of a partnership with the Fuel Cell Collaborative, will be installed by M.B. Kahn Construction Co.

“SCRA is excited to be able to join with M.B. Kahn and our Fuel Collaborative partners in this innovative approach for advancing the hydrogen and fuel industry in our state,” said Bill Mahoney, SCRA CEO, and member of the Fuel Cell Collaborative executive committee. 

“The opportunity to deliver follow-on value from previous public-private investments reflects SCRA’s commitment to be faithful stewards of the funding we receive to promote commercialization activities in new technology domains.” 

Removed from Fort Jackson last fall, the fuel cell units were part of a five-year demonstration project under the U.S. Energy Department’s Fuel Cell “Market Transformation” initiative. It involved 10 total fuel cell units and was managed by SCRA. Once the applied research corporation took custody of the cells, the collaborative funded work to refurbish them for service.

The units, which are expected to provide more than five years of clean, green backup energy, will be used for public school education projects across the Midlands, including at the Institute of Innovation. There it will provide a backup power option of up to five kilowatts, which allows for cost saving, and will be used as a part of the school’s Next Energy and Fuel Cell Engineering class.

“Richland Two is proud to be a part of the Midlands’ focus on alternative energy,” said Debbie Hamm, Richland School District Two superintendent. “Teaching our students about creating and providing affordable sources of energy bodes well for the future of the state of South Carolina and our nation. We are appreciative to those who have worked to bring this opportunity to the students in our district.”

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